Call it whatever you want but the free party scene is alive and kicking in the UK. There are various free parties and illegal raves but the term free party means that the party and rave is ‘free’ from the legal restrictions of the legal club and rave scene.
Free does not mean it costs nothing however any earnings are free from income tax, something the Thatcher government did not like way back in the late 1980s when the free party scene really took a hold.
Way back then they were known as acid house parties and warehouse raves mainly because they played a dance music which was predominately acid house and often set in disused warehouses.
Today these parties still play a mixture of acid techno and the newer harder music known as hardstyle. These raves are often known as freetekno parties if they have one main sound system but if they do have more than one system resulting in a mini festival feel they then become known as teknivals.
Most free parties do not charge to enter but they do like to have a donation to cover costs and let’s be honest, a lot of donations means they can still make some pocket money.
The term free party is used more over here in the UK and Europe than the USA, they prefer to use the freetekno party term. Such a shame that no can use the traditional spelling of Techno… I am a purists
The newer version of the warehouse rave where the free party is held in a secret indoor address has become known as a squat party and gets the name because the event organiser has squatted in the property for the purpose of the party.
Just like the old days of the acid house parties and warehouse raves the address of the party is not released until the day of the event and you obtain the address from the party organiser either by text message, mobile phone or social media.
After the second summer of love back in 1988 the British government wanted to crack down on illegal raves and free parties because they were annoyed that they had little control at that point. Parties could have up to 4000 people attending with the M25 Orbital ring road staging events which would see around 25,000 party goers going to many different events most weekends.
The crack down came and new laws were passed so that anyone caught holding a party could be fined £20,000 and face a possible six months prison sentence. A sex offender could get less punishment than that!
25 years on after the acid house brought with it the illegal rave and free party scene the scene is still live and growing. Below is a tune from Kutski and Audiofreq which includes a newsreport about an illegal rave that happened in London.
As a middle aged man all I can say is long live the illegal ravers and the free party spirit!
Illegal Hardstyle Party – UK News Report
For more information about the free party history then please visit Wikipedia here Free Party