On a drippy February morning in Potters Fields Park next to London’s City Hall, excited chatter floated from a large crowd. The 100-strong group, led by writer Anna Minton and me, had amassed to undertake ‘Space Probe Alpha’ – a mass trespass.

A few yards from us, thousands of methodically interlaced flame-textured Irish blue limestone paving stones marked a socio-political boundary, where the public space of the council-owned park transforms into privately owned pseudo-public space managed by a company called More London Estates.

The celebrated 1932 mass trespass on Kinder Scout, in ...


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