Sunday, 27 March 2011

TUC March.

Up to town early yesterday morning to join the crowds gathered on the Embankment ready to march against the cuts to public sector jobs. It's the biggest demonstration in London since the 2,000,000 strong demonstration against military intervention in Iraq back in 2003.

It was a colourful and eclectic affair mostly organised Union groups marching behind banners, but alongside them were other coalitions, family groups and lots of unaffiliated individuals, all keen to show their opposition.

Eleanor and I tried to find her sister Hannah, who works for Equity, but it the gathering was huge and crushed and it was near impossible to go anywhere but where you ended up. On a sunny day London is a great city for demonstrations and we snaked up to Trafalgar Square and along Piccadilly to Hyde Park. On the final leg things slowed up as the throng stopped to take photographs of the paint bombed, glass shattered Ritz. On the other side of the road Lord Palmerston's former town house had Tories Out scrawled on one of the walls. He would have agreed.

It was fairly late when we got there and most of the speeches were over. A blessing really to have missed Ed Miliband's shameful attempt to see us as the inheritors of both the suffragettes and the civil rights movement. Cheap politics.

Walking back into town we passed Fortnum and Mason, occupied by masked anarchists and members of UK Uncut. The police were moving in slowly to try and clear the shop, whilst on the pavement a huge crowd had gathered to watch the spectacle.

Despite a few sporadic outbreaks of violence is was a fantastically organised day where the real big society had came together to protest against the government perpetrated knife crime.


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