A protest outside Downing Street against the newly-elected Prime Minister last night saw a bit of edge that has been sorely lacking in recent years, say our people on the ground.
The demo, which had two distinct sections comprising a static early crowd at the gates who were later joined by a rowdier bunch who got the cops a bit hot and bothered, skewed younger with zoomers making up the bulk of the people there.
Police were out in force from the start, surrounding the static crowd which had “benefited” from a Stand Up To Racism placard handout, but initially seemed content to stand around looking a bit bored while several hundred people decried the new PM.
This all changed when a bloc arrived which was a bit more mobile, and lines were drawn up in an effort to corral the groups separately — an effort which immediately failed. Batons were drawn and shins started getting kicked as the cops lost their cool.
Despite this, a pushy crowd repeatedly broke through the lines and only a limited kettle was imposed, lasting about 90 minutes. Two arrests were made.
A participant said: “I thought there was really good energy, people seemed up for it and we broke through the cordons several times — it was pretty satisfying.
“The thing which was really refreshing about it was that I didn’t know anyone there and people seemed pretty confrontational, it seemed like everyone had each others’ backs and were aware that we could use the fact that there were more of us than cops to our advantage.”
The Activist Court Aid Brigade reported:
“The (kettle) roadblock and slow release was an attempt at gathering ‘intelligence’ on the demo, and arresting anyone singled out by evidence gathering teams as suspects. They only made one arrest from the kettle, any other suspects seemingly having escaped altogether.”
Pics courtesy of Patrycja Borecka