WHEN: Sat 26 January -  Sunday 27 January 2013, 11am - 8:00pm

WHERE: The Bishopsgate Institute, 230 Bishopsgate, City of London, EC2M 4QH

HOW TO GET THERE: Map, Liverpool Street Tube (2 min walk from station)

TICKETS: Free! Donations welcome. Arrive 10-15mins before talk to ensure a seat

PROGRAMME: Click here


A very warm welcome to the 4th This Is Not A Gateway Festival. This is the festival that almost never happened - prison, unexpected illness and death in the family, brutal funding cuts and so on! As a result this year's festival programme is somewhat smaller than previous years - however it might be the most potent and provocative yet?

Welcome also to the Bishopsgate Institute a fascinating building that transgresses across and through the geography of the filthy-rich Corporation of London into the London Borough of Tower Hamlets - where one in two children wake up each day in entirely unnecessary poverty. The building along with its programme; archive and library and popular education programme opened in 1895 as a result of external and direct pressure on the Corporation and and it's churches. These institutions had, as a result of industrialisation, colonialism, slave trading and deceased estates accumulated what was then seen as excessive monies. People demanded the monies be used for education and poverty eradication. Such institutions knew they had to 'bend' or face the real prospect of 'breaking' once and for all. The Bishopsgate Institute would have been sold off long ago if it wasn't for a secular church minister who wrote into the organisation's constitution that its public endeavors must continue perpetuity. 

Most of you reading this will have likely been to a previous This Is Not A Gateway Festival, salon or book launch... if you haven't, please consider this an extra warm welcome! You can see photographs of previous events here and read what others thought about the previous festival here. You might be able to tell from the images and comments the events are low-key and usually undertaken in a non-hierarchical way. Everyone in the room is a participant - there are no experts.

Five main themes are being interrogated at this year's festival;

Financial Districts

Legalities of Space

City Means Inequality


Insurrections, Riots & Revolutions

The festival programme runs from 11am to 8pm each day and includes debates, workshops, lectures, exhibitions, walks and film screenings. The festival has been described as an experience where 'the street', meets 'the community centre' and 'the academy'.

Look out for the message boards and the people with sound recorders ... one of the efforts this year is to publish a list of demands, both for ourselves and for the institutions; local, national and global that are without a doubt making our children's lives more difficult. 


Deepa Naik & Trenton Oldfield