Sun 18 Oct – Freedom to film: reclaiming our public spaces

As many of us know, there are a number of legal restrictions on filming in public spaces, shopping centres and even parks .

But Hackney charity Worldwrite say that security guards, community safety wardens and similar folk are refusing their young volunteer film crews ‘permission to film’ on streets where they are actually entitled to do so.

Whilst the rationale for prohibition is often on the  grounds of ‘privacy’ and ‘security’, Worldwrite say that there is in fact no law against filming or taking photographs in public places.

The charity says that most restrictions are based on contemporary anxieties and prejudices, rather than the law itself.

It suggests that at the centre of the reduction of activities allowed in the public sphere is a suspicion of the citizen film-maker or photographer, who may regularly be seen as a predatory or threatening figure. Filming, news-gathering and photography by citizen journalists has a long and important history and freedom. Continuing this tradition is vital to our democracy.

On Sunday 18 October, the charity aims to highlight these ‘film-free zones’  by making a programme about the right to film.

Worldwrite is encouraging all film-makers, photographers and everyone to join them on the day.

They are inviting people to use come along and bring cameras, mobile phones and similar, to promote the right to view, record and question the world around us.

Where and when

Worldwrite will be filming at the following locations and times on Sunday 18 October:

At 10.30am in Mandeville Square, Clapton, London E5
At 12.00pm on Ridley Road Market, Dalston, London E8
At 1.30pm outside Hackney Town Hall on Mare Street, London E8

They will be filming their  film-makers, interviewing members of the public and recording any attempts to prevent them doing so.

The aim is to make a stand for the freedom to film and a programme re-establishing the right to film in East London without harassment.

Worldwrite says that people cannot be arrested for filming for a news programme in a public place, and that cameras and footage cannot be taken away without a court order.

More about  WORLDwrite.

020 8985 5435
Registered charity no. 1060869

Real news stories don't come cheap.

The Hackney Citizen is the borough’s only independent newspaper, and is now in its tenth year.

Our hard-hitting journalism has uncovered fire safety failures in tower blocks, revealed plans to criminalise rough sleepers, exposed dodgy letting agents and reported on many other issues of public concern.

We’ve always been totally free in print and online, but advertising revenues are falling.

That’s why we’re asking for your help.

Hackney Citizen’s high quality journalism is produced by a small team on a shoestring budget, so we’re asking you to make a monthly contribution to fund our work, enabling the paper to survive and thrive.

Support the Hackney Citizen from as little as £2 per month.

Can you spare £4 a month or more? Get the paper delivered direct to your door each month! (UK only)