Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Freedom Press is the oldest surviving anarchist publishing house in the English speaking world and the largest in Britain. It is based at 84b Whitechapel High Steet in the East End of London. Alongside its many books and pamphlets, the group also publish a fortnightly newspaper, Freedom, which is the only regular national anarchist newspaper in the UK.
The Press was founded in 1886 by a group of friends, including Charlotte Wilson and Peter Kropotkin, who were already publishing Freedom newspaper, and has operated, with short breaks, ever since. Much of the bookshop's recent history was tied up with Vernon Richards, who ran both it and Freedom Newspaper from the 1930s until late in the 90s.
The bookshop was attacked by neo-fascist group Combat 18 in March 1993, and eventually firebombed. The building still bears some visible damage from the attacks, and metal guards have been installed on the ground floor windows and doors, intended to ward against against any further violence (see picture).
Today, although Freedom no longer press books themselves, they remain as a functioning publishing house. The building hosts an autonomy club, archive, bookshop and newspaper. A 'hacklab' (online public resource centre for GNU/Linux) is also under construction.
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