Monthly Archives: March 2011

How it happened

by Joe Rennison, 1:00am March 27

Trafalgar Square hosted a peaceful and pleasant party this evening. Police took a ‘soft touch’ approach and everything seemed to be taking its course. People sat around Nelson’s column listening to music, police allowed them to build bonfires to keep warm and protesters repeatedly commented on how impressed they were by the police’s handling of the situation.

Then a group of protesters were seen on the Olympic clock. It is unclear what they were doing on the clock but it certainly wasn’t deemed acceptable by the police who stormed in, rapidly carving a path through the protesters and forming a wall around the clock. Protesters reacted by running over to the scene from every corner of the square, throwing missiles such as traffic cones and burning wood. Many glass bottles were also thrown, which eventually pushed the police back, as they didn’t have riot gear on to protect themselves. These police were replaced by the heavy hands of riot police who secured the area quickly and efficiently, but violently. Generally the police were reactionary, only acting in response to aggression from protesters but a few disturbing scenes saw police break lines and use the full force of their shields and batons. One incident saw a protester knocked squarely to the ground by a police shield, from an officer that had stepped out two meters from the police line to reach the protester. It was a scene reminiscent of the film 300, more than the usually tourist infested Trafalgar Square.

From here, police sweeped through the protesters, pushing them onto the strand and into the surrounding area. A small group remain ‘contained’ in the centre of Trafalgar Square but most have dispersed, engaging in scuffles here and there but generally going on their way.

Another protest remains in Hyde Park where a group intend to stay overnight. Small and peaceful the protest has garnered little attention, even from us.

As a closing note, be aware of the ‘earlier’ tab on the BBC’s footage being shown now on BBC News 24. Trafalgar Square does not look like that now.

Latest Met Police Statement

“Throughout the day there have been a total of 214 arrests for a variety of offences including public order offences, criminal damage, aggravated trespass and violent disorder. All are currently in custody at various London police stations.

“In total there have been 84 reported injuries over the course of the day, including 31 police officers.”

Police draw line across Strand

Strand is now partitioned by a police line just before Charring Cross tube.

The police are looking to seperate the protesters. Potential kettle on west side of strand as police advance up from Trafalgar Square.

Police van attacked.

By Joe Rennison

A police van distributing shields just got ambushed by protesters.

Police reacted by sending in about 20 riot police which has now swelled to about 40.

It started with protesters repeatedly hurling glass bottles at an unarmed, unprotected officer. The reaction by riot police was similarly forceful.

Protester speaks out against arms investment

By Joe Rennison

Madeleine Young has been out since 8 and plans to sleep in Hyde park tonight.

She said: “If there was less money given to arms dealers then there would be more money for the people and I am very clear on that matter.”