Justice4Grenfell is a community-led organisation, focused on the long-term goal of obtaining justice for the bereaved families, survivors, evacuated residents and the wider local community affected by the Grenfell Tower disaster. It is the organisation’s aim to ensure that such an event never happens again
Five years on from the fire, no one has been arrested. Justice4Grenfell wanted to highlight that half a decade later the authorities still had not delivered justice to the victims and survivors as well as the wider community. We wanted to create a moment to remind the UK public of this, so that continued pressure can be applied to the Government.
With a toothless public inquiry and no progress, we had to cut through the apathy and hijack a cultural moment while getting the tone right. There was lots of ‘hard news’ around, so we needed to create something impactful that was empathetic to the surviving familes, but also hard hitting.
10 days before the 5 year anniversary of the tragedy, the country was planning for the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. Communities up and down the country began organising street parties, festivals and other shared celebrations, but for one community this time was a time for remembrance and not celebration.
We decided to use this moment to flip the existing news agenda and create a moment that could not be missed. The week of the Jubilee celebrations, we held a Justice4Grenfell street party, with a crucial difference: no one would come. Here Be Dragons laid a table with 72 empty place settings, representing the number of men, women, and children who died in the fire on June 14th 2017. Each place card we laid carried the name of one of the victims; a special commemorative plate, often used around Royal moments, was designed for the occasion, again carrying all 72 names, and ‘Grenfell green’ bunting and napkins adorned the table. We worked with the local community to lend support to the idea - borrowing 72 chairs and enough tables from local community groups.
Throughout the day coverage began to cascade across media, and was covered by every national in the UK, and picked up and organically shared across social media by high profile people like Choose Love, Bella Mackie, Aisling Bea, Big Zhu and Cephas Williams.