the plod lose the plot

Tagged as: cuts demo2011 education nov9 occupation occupylondon occupylsx repression solidarity students
Neighbourhoods: holborn holborn_circus holborn_viaduct new_fetter_lane

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Resembling a moving kettle, hemmed in and crushed, the march moved excruciatingly slow from Malet Street via Trafalgar Square down The Strand. At a road block costruction with a strange blue wall-like barrier on Fleet Street, the march was directed up Fetter Lane.

It stopped for a long time, whether this was due to the police horses and several lines of officers in the front of the march, who had been purposfully sowing it down to the usual London crawl, or, as I have heard, to the refusal of marchers to move on in solidarity with the kettled sparks, who were prevented from joining the studen march by the police, I don't know. Frustration reached a boiling point on New Fetter Lane, occasional objects, mostly crumpled newspapers and empty plastic bottles, but also some paint, were thrown at the police.

Walking ahead of the march, it was chilling to see all side street blocked off with barriers as well as police lines, it felt much like sheep being herded to the slaughter's. The same on Holborn Circus, all streets leading off were blocked with barriers, vans and officers, except Holborn Viaduct.

How the line of police horses got stuck in the middle of the crowd, and what caused the confusion amongst units on the ground, is unclear. Just a moment earlier it looked like an operation that would fill any police state with pride. But they did get confused. And some of the protesters grabbed the opportunity to pick up pace and head off along the prescribed route, lined by road blocks on each side street. Obviously the police was not content keeping people on the route, they also felt the need to control the pace of the march and rocked in with riot cops, cutting of the majority of people.

One young woman describes her experience of the events at Holborn Circus here.