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Thursday, 25 August 2016



The Portico

                                           INFORMAL, DRAFT ANNOUNCEMENT

                                                              Tom Leonard

The planning of this secular, apolitical, democratic group is currently at an 
embryonic stage and a draft constitution with a safe space policy is in preparation
by myself and another Church member, with advice from several members of the
community at large. While the group will be centred on St. Andrews and St. George's
West (SOC) Church on George Street in central Edinburgh, it will not be explicitly
Christian in nature or controlled or unduly influenced by other groups, or by a 
leadership or steering committee. While we will elect a Secretary and a Facebook 
moderator, there will be no other elected or unelected official. It is anticipated that 
the group will interface between the Christian and secular components of our 

     The idea is to seek ways of successfully confronting authority regarding the 
important social issues of the day. These include, but are by no means limited to 
(a) the protection of immigrants, refugees, and asylum seekers (b) reforming our
benefits system and Workfare, and scrapping Sanctioning (c) addressing the current widespread maltreatment of people with mental health issues (d) addressing 
ecological problems relating to the environment (e) demanding more help for the 
homeless, the  hungry, the sick. the elderly, and the vulnerable.

    Possibly ways of confronting authority include (A) well publicised public lectures 
and debates (B) public demonstrations, marches, and even pickets. These could prove 
to be more successful than, say, signing petitions or writing to Government officials, 
but all possibilities will be considered. including Parliamentary petitions for changes 
in the law. We also plan to organise various international campaigns, with a group 
Facebook page and maybe a blog.

    We plan to hold monthly meetings of the group, probably from 7pm until 10pm 
during a weekday evening. During these meetings, members will be encouraged 
to organise themselves into working groups which will consider how to further 
address specific social issues of interest.

     It is anticipated that this group is likely to attract interest from a wide range of 
socially active people and organizations in the Edinburgh area. If you are interested, 
then please e-mail me on

     Please say where you live, and whether you would like to be heavily, not so heavily,  
or tangentially involved with our group. Please also say something about yourself,

     We are planning to hold two or three informal meetings prior to our first formal 
meeting in November, and we will advise and invite you accordingly. 

                                                                The Undercroft              

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