We went to a Bristol Rent Strike launch party last week

Music, mayhem, and good old activism

The University of Bristol is yet again increasing its accommodation fees by 3.5% this year after a 4.5% increase last year.

This comes after persistently refusing Freedom of Information requests for where the money is going; university accounts suggest £6.9 million is made in profit from their residential services.

As a result Bristol, Cut the Rent have started a pledge to rent strike in UoB-owned accommodations, demanding genuinely affordable rents and greater transparency. Last week saw its official launch party, and it was pretty live.

Turns out, getting involved in a political action can actually be quite fun. What’s more, it’s refreshing to see that Bristol students can be angry about something other than being rejected from Oxbridge.

On the bill were two first year bands personally affected by the university’s exclusionary rent setting policies

First on was supergroup Elliot Brett whose climactic and cinematic trip-hop got people moving.

Next on was Aqua TV who brought a blistering barrage of punk energy with an eclectic range of songs bringing to mind Sonic Youth and The Red Hot Chili Peppers (before they got shit obvs).

The night ended with a raffle with a lucky attendee winning an official Rent Strike care package which included: 1x 2L White Ace, 1x pack of king skins, 1x clipper lighter, 4 tinnies of their choice and a pack of extra strength rubber balloons.

Being surrounded by such a huge amount of sweaty, enthusiastic and determined students it really did feel like this movement was going somewhere.

To check out the pledge and have a gander at what Bristol, Cut The Rent stands for, follow this link.

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