Squatters at the old Red Lion pub on Southampton Street can remain for now after a court hearing was adjourned due to the prosecution not following procedures correctly.

The derelict pub was transformed into Kobani House last month – a political space in solidarity with the people and revolutions of Kurdistan.

Vogue Assets LTD, owners of the disused pub, issued an interim possession order (IPO).

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If the order had been granted by the Reading County Court judge, the squatters would have had to leave within 24 hours of the order being served.

But the judge adjourned the case this morning because the prosecution had not served all the mandatory papers on time, with the claim form served only on the morning of the hearing.

The judge said: “The IPO is gone. Forget about it. What we have now is a trespass order.”

He told the squatters: “The only issue of that hearing is whether you have a right to remain at the property.”

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Following the verdict, the squatters walked back to Kobani House through the centre of Reading, hoisting their Save Kobani House flag and chanting songs such as Italian protest folk song Bella Ciao.

The next hearing will be heard at 10am on Monday. December 9.

What happened at court?

The judge adjourned the case because the prosecution had not served its claim form on time.

An application for an IPO was served prior to the hearing but the claim form was served to the defence on the morning of the hearing.

The law states landlords must serve the documents to the squatters within 24 hours of the court issuing the application for an interim possession order.

The hearing will now take place on Monday.

The IPO is no longer valid and a trespass hearing will be heard to determine whether the squatters have the right to remain.

What is Kobani House?

Kobani House is a political space in solidarity with the people and revolutions of Kurdistan set up by squatters.

Reading Chronicle:

The squatters hold political workshops and social events such as open mics and are planning a free meal on Christmas Day.

The group hope to stay until January 2020, so that they can continue to host events and strengthen community links.

Cllr James said of the squat: “Whilst the council wouldn’t condone squats it might encourage developers to develop buildings faster.

“The group from all reports are fairly welcoming so I think that deserves some credit.”

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The Kurdish community in Reading, of which there are around 700-1000 residents, have called for a permanent community space.

A petition has been set up on change.org which asks for the council to provide a temporary space followed by a commitment to a long-term plan for a centre for the Kurdish community.

Councillor Sophia James, lead member for Communities: “There are budget issues, but we would happily support the group.

“They are welcome to apply for funding and we would actively support that.”

The council has a contract with Reading Voluntary Action (RVA) to provide support to voluntary groups in Reading and help them apply and bid for funding.

Information to voluntary groups on sources of funding can be obtained from RVA, by calling 0118 937 2273 or visiting their website www.rva.org.uk.

RVA can also advise on community spaces available in Reading.