1988-1989, Melbourne, Squatters Union of Victoria activity

More chronologies from Squat It! outlining the SUV’s activities during 1988 and 1989. Unfortunately the chronologies for September-October 1988 are missing as we do not have a copy of issue #16. If anyone can help out then please contact us at ozsquat@gmail.com


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1987, Melbourne, Squatters Union of Victoria activity

The Squatters Union of Victoria was highly active during 1987, the UN’s International Year of Shelter for the Homeless, as the following timelines from the group’s zine Squat It! demonstrate.

Timeline 1 1987001

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1985, Canberra: Cambodian Embassy Squat

A year after the ACT Squatters Union set up a Homeless Embassy in the abandoned South Vietnamese embassy they moved into the similarly disused, and somewhat plush, Cambodian Embassy. This story appeared on the front page of the Canberra Times on 28 June, 1985.
friday 28 june 1985

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2000-2002, Sydney: Squatspace Actions

A video showing a variety of actions undertaken by Sydney’s Squatspace collective including them setting an Unreal Estate agency in Newcastle’s Hunter Street Mall in 2002.

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2010, Sydney: Radio Interview with Squatters and the story of Kinema

 For 6 months in 2010 a household of squatters lived in a fairly fancy property in Sydney and hosted some film nights. Uilleam tells the story below. For an interview with him and another squatter about a long term squatted home and cafe that appeared on Community Radio FBi, visit here. For more tales of squatting and advice on utilities visit the Squat Sydney Blog here.


Kinema, Our Squatted Cinema

When we finally broke into our building we walked upstairs. We knew that the bottom floor wouldn’t be practical to use, but had no idea what would be at the top of the two flights of carpeted stairs. Up there were two perfectly sized bedrooms, a roomy living area with a kitchen, and a huge empty hall (pictured) that must’ve been an office.

Looking at all the space, making our two bodies look tiny, we were both pretty excited. The last few months we’d been kicked out of everything we squatted within weeks and had been sleeping in living rooms, and now we were in a huge building with loads of potential. The sobering reality that we were squatters in this joint, and with it being in a fairly prominent location meant a lot of our initial ideas were not going to be realised. Read more »

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1989, Sydney: Broadway Squats, Round One

This story from Angry People magazine in 1992 discusses, in the context of moves to sell off parks, the first time shopfronts Sydney’s Broadway were squatted and evicted by South Sydney council. The squats were reoccupied in 2000 and held for a number of months.

angry people 1992-10


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2009, Brisbane/Ipswich: Brisbane Solidarity Network Homeless Guide and Queensland Squatters Handbook

The Brisbane Solidarity Network have produced an excellent squatting handbook for Queenslanders which can be downloaded from here. Their practical and insightful 128 page Crisis guide also provides survival strategies and information for Brisbanites finding themselves without housing or on the edge of homelessness. To download a copy or find out about the group’s campaign work click here.


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1929-1936, Australia: Lock Out The Landlords!

The economic depression of the 1930s saw thousands of Australians thrown out of their homes and into the streets. These actions however did not go unopposed. Across Australia pickets, occupations and protests were organised to disrupt and prevent evictions and auctions. Where these failed some took matters into their own hands wrecking the properties of landlords and real estate agents in revenge. This pamphlet, originally written in 1998 and updated ten years later, chronicles just some of the many struggles that took place. It includes a chronology of actions as well as photos and quotes from those involved providing an insight into the events of the time. It can be downloaded here. A history walk and podcast visiting some of the key sites of unemployed and eviction campaigns in Brunswick can be accessed here.

eviction crowd

Woolloomooloo anti eviction rally, Sydney early 1930s

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Late 1980s/Early 1990s, Melbourne and Sydney: Squatting stickers and posters


Some squatting related stickers and posters contributed by Ann.


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2013, Melbourne: New novel set in 1980s squatting and punk scenes

fly book

Synopsis from amazon.com: Rejected by suburbia for being a freak, Agro finds acceptance in the Melbourne hardcore punk scene of the 1980’s, where mates and music are everything. Moving from squat to squat she and her friends survive thugs, prostitute rings, police raids, bikie gangs and thieving speed addicts. Despite the bleakness of their lifestyle they live by a code of loyalty, one that is all important and separate from the world that rejected Agro. In her desperate struggle for acceptance she is drawn back to her violent past. Only this time being a freak is no disadvantage. Fly is the beginning to a disturbingly real saga set in an underground world that slams to a genuine Melbourne beat with real bands, real venues and real attitude.

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