my london diary index


Stock photography by Peter+Marshall at Alamy

Other sites with my pictures include
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All pictures Copyright © Peter Marshall 2017, all rights reserved.
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Class War Paper Launch at White Cube

London, UK. 30th April 2017
The official launch of the new Class War newspaper at the White Cube
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Class War held a protest against gentrification outside Bermondsey's White Cube gallery to launch the new Class War newspaper featuring some fine articles about Class, Housing, the Women's Death Brigade etc, as well as some hilarious horoscopes and features on Duncan Disorderly and Potent Whisper. It also contains photographs, a few from this site used with permission.

It was a legendary occasion with great music from Cosmo, who had come from Wales to play, Adam Clifford (aka Jimmy Kunt) and others, along with some powerful spoken word performances by Potent Whisper and others and political rants from Simon Elmer, Martin Wright and Ian Bone.

As well as providing a coruscating attack on the housing polices of Labour-run London councils including Southwark who are demolishing social housing to provide investment opportunities for the wealthy, mainly overseas investors, many of whom leave the properties empty while their market values soar, the event was also a launch party for the relaunched Class War tabloid - and there was some football.

Police had thoughtfully provided a large security presence for the event, more than enough to provide a full team, but they were reluctant to play ball, while White Cube had closed their gallery, employed security staff and parked a large van across the entrance to ensure that no one was distracted from the Class War event in the yard in front of the gallery.
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Trump and May - Climate Disaster

Parliament Square & Westminster Bridge, London Sat 29 Apr 2017

The people directing those holding up the signs got them two arches further than was needed on the bridge
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Campaign against Climate Change held a rally in solidarity with the People's Climate March in the US, and to tell Theresa May not to follow Trump down the path to climate disaster.

After speeches opposite Parliament, people carried giant letters spelling out 'TRUMP & MAY CLIMATE DISASTER' and walked with them to Westminster Bridge for photographs. Unfortunately the letters proved difficult to see from the south bank and the huge crush of tourists made taking pictures on the pavements very difficult. It didn't help that they started on the fourth arch from Westminster and were then moved to the fifth when to get a better picture of the Houses of Parliament behind they really needed to be on the third.

They also needed to be held a couple of feet higher to clear the mass of the crowd or to be made to be suspended over the bridge rail - as with a normal banner drop - to be properly legible.

It was just a little easier when they moved to the other side of the bridge and the letters were more clearly outlined against the sky, but again the pavements were full of tourists making it hard to get a clear view. And when I finally managed to do so, the result was a long thin image - or one with huge expanses of empty roadway and empty sky and the message on a narrow strip. The letters were a nice idea but needed rather more thought about how they could be photographed.
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Palestinian Prisoners Hunger Strike vigil

St Martin's Place, London. Fri 28 Apr 2017

A woman hands out leaflets about the Palestinian hunger strike
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A vigil by Inminds human right group on the edge of Trafalgar Square gave information and stood in solidarity with the largest hunger strike of Palestinian political prisoners in 5 years.

Over 1500 Palestinian prisoners from all factions went on hunger strike on 17th April 2017 and more have joined since despite brutal attacks by prison guards and force feeding. News media in the UK have largely or completely ignored - with the BBC making no mention at all until it reported the end of the strike.

The prisoners are demanding basic human rights and want all prisoners to be allowed family visits, the use of phones to contact family, proper health treatment without charges, humanitarian treatment during transfers between courts and prisons, an end to end to administrative detention and solitary confinement, to be allowed to receive clothing, books and hygiene products from their families and to run their kitchens rather than have to eat food prepared by Israeli criminal prisoners who in some prisons routinely spit and urinate in it.

The protest got a very positive response from most of those walking by, taking leaflets and stopping to talk. There were just one or two people who shouted comments supporting Israel and calling all of the information on the banners and placards lies, and accusing the protesters of anti-Semitism. Of course this is nonsense. It isn't anti-semitic to stand up against the kind of human rights abuse that is documented in Inminds leaflets and posters, most of it fully evidenced by internationally recognised sources, but merely common humanity.
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Olympic Park Update

Stratford, London. Fri 28 Apr 2017

On the Greenway is a map and information about the Olympic park and area
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Almost 5 years after the Olympics I went back to look at the progress on the site and in particular at the QEII park to see how it looked. It seemed a good time to go as later in the year parts of the area will get too much overgrown, while earlier in the year it would have looked rather too bare. As well as the panoramic images I had gone to make I also made some other pictures. Not everything works as a panorama.

I took the tube and then DLR to Pudding Mill Lane, and even before I left the station it was clear that a lot of work was still going on, including some for Crossrail. The Greenway between Stratford High St and the railway is still closed.

I made my way up onto the Greenway and to the ViewTube, and made my way into the garden, disturbing a woman busy tiding it up. The trees and shrubs outside the fence made it impossible to photograph from the extreme corner of the garden when I had photographed during the Olympic year. The upper floor is no longer a viewing platform, but now offices, and the row of containers alongside the path were largely empty and unused - they are to be let out as affordable studio spaces where makers can both work and sell.

There was a large building site to the south of the Olympic stadium, which according to the map appears to be the London Marathon Charitable Trust Community Track and I walked along the road south past that and along the Loop Road and the bridge over the City Mill River before entering the park and heading north beside the river to its junction with the Old River Lea. Although Carpenter's Lock has not yet been replaced there is now a board saying that they are restoring this double radial lock - unique in the UK - if little sign of any progress.

I was able also to walk across the old bridge, though sorry that its iconic graffiti 'F**K SEB COE' has been painted over and not restored. Further north was still a huge area of empty desert that crushes any soul that has to cross it, particularly in hot weather - the map calls it Mandeville Place. At least today it was threatening rain and temperate. The edges of the area when I looked across to the west are still shabby, with unkempt grass and weeds and building sites. Beyond Carpenters Rd the park is at least green, though with little interest compared to the old allotments, and the landscape around the Velodrome with its outdoor track lacks the ruggedness of the old cycle track.

There is an attempt at a more formal garden along the Eton Manor Way, and the Olympic rings on a mound above it. I walk on south, though a small belt of trees on a hill and then down and across the Lea past the Copper Box to cross the navigation on the new Wallis Bridge into Wallis Rd in Hackney Wick. I've time to admire a little of the graffiti which has re-established itself since the unfortunate Olympic Blitz (an act of unthinking cultural bias) before catching the train to Stratford to return to central London.
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International Workers’ Memorial Day

Tower Hill, London. Fri 28 Apr 2017
The Unite wreath and the coffin with helmets and boots
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The International Workers’ Memorial Day rally at the statue of a building worker on Tower Hill remembering all those killed at work, around 500 in the last ten years, mainly in the construction industry, as well as those injured, disabled and made unwell, almost all in preventable incidents.

At the centre of the rally was a coffin with boots, hard hat, hi-viz tabard and safety glasses, surrounded by more helmets, one for each of the 43 workers killed this year. The slogan for the day was 'Remember the Dead - Fight for the Living'. After the speeches, a wreath was laid and after a period of silence 43 black balloons were released, one for each of the workers killed last year.
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RMT protest driver only operation

Old Palace Yard, Westminster, London. Wed 26 Apr 2017

DPAC members hold a banner 'Rail Workers Fighting 4 Our Safety
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The RMT hold a national protest outside Parliament to mark a year since the beginning of their dispute with Southern Rail over the introduction of driver only operation.

The protest was supported by disabled train users from DPAC who see the presence of guards in charge of the doors as essential for the safety of disabled passengers. Passenger safety is clearly at risk in the long 8, 10 or 12 carriage trains on many Southern routes unless a member of staff is actually on the platform to supervise the passengers alighting and boarding trains. A driver checking a large number of small screens inside the cab is clearly not an acceptable solution.

Although Southern and the government say there are no safety issues, few rail passengers would agree, and everyone sees this a move towards operating long trains with only one member of rail staff aboard. Fresh talks over the dispute are due to start this week.
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LSE decorated against inequality & corruption

LSE, London.Tue 25 Apr 2017

'Cut Directors Pay Boost Workers Pay We All Know it Makes Sense'
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Students and workers in the 'Life Not Money' campaign at the London School of Economics carried out a colourful nonviolent direct action calling on the LSE to change from what they say is thirty years of growing neglect, cruelty and outright corporate greed towards workers and staff at the school to something beautiful and life affirming.

On sale in the LSE shop was a t-shirt with large letters on it spelling out the name of the institution as '£$€' with the symbols shown in appropriate flag designs, which perhaps shows most clearly the management ethos; taking further the protesters banners which called it the 'London $chool of Exploitation'.

Like the LSE's LIsa McKenzie who pointed this shirt out to me, I found it hard to believe - and soon after the pictures had been published this shirt design vanished from the window, though it is still available, at least on the shop's web page, where it says "If there are two things LSE is famous for, they are its international standing and its financially savvy graduates. With this unisex international currency T-shirt, you get both!" Perhaps they should consider a redesign adding a suitably exploited and downtrodden employee.

Campaigners taped flowers and statements to the windows of the student union and used wipeable spray chalk to call on the LSE director to take a pay cut of £100,000 in her £500,000 salary to improve pay and conditions of the lowest paid workers who are on under £9 per hour and have unpaid breaks.

After painting the slogan and decorations, they sat outside and held a party until police came and arrested the four who had decorated the Garrick Building alleging they had caused criminal damage, despite their offer to clean off the paint with the sponges they had brought for the purpose.

I was passing around lunchtime three days later and photographed the building again. The chalk had been removed cleanly with no sign of any damage, though there were still security staff standing around in case there was any more action. more pictures

London Uni Security Officers strike

Senate House, London. Tue 25 Apr 2017

Dancing on the picket line at the lunchtime rally
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Security officers at the University of London picketed outside Senate House on the first day of their 2-day strike.

Their employer Cordant has failed to honour an agreement with the university to increase their pay in line with other university employees, and they have fallen behind by around 25%. A letter to the managers and a meeting with them was met by the cancellation of all holidays, even those already agreed for the next 2 months.

The security officers who are members of the University of London branch of the IWGB union voted 100% for strike action calling for no zero-hours contracts, proper pay slips for all and for the University of London to honour its promises on pay.
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LGBT rights abuses in Chechnya

Russian Embassy, London. Sat 22 Apr 2017

Outside the gates of the Russian Consular Dept
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People brought pink flowers and wrote messages on pink triangles outside the gates of the Consular department of the Russian Embassy to show solidarity with LGBT people in Chechnya.

Over a hundred men, suspected by the authorities of being homosexual have been rounded up an put into camps and tortured, with three thought to have been killed. Those held include many well-known in the country, including TV personalities and religious figures.

The Amnesty petition states "The Chechen government won’t admit that gay men even exist in Chechnya, let alone that they ordered what the police call 'preventive mopping up' of people they deem undesirable" and the London vigil was one of a number taking place across the UK.
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Scientists Rally for Science

Parliament Square, London. Sat 22 Apr 2017

Scientists listen to speeches at the rally
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I was later than I hoped to arrive at the rally at the end of the march for science in Parliament Square, but there still seemed to be quite a few people speaking. But I didn't recognise many of them and didn't stay long.

The speakers were listed as:

Robin Ince, comedian, writer and broadcaster
Dr Brenna Hassett, bioarchaeologist and author
Dr Francisco Diego, astronomer and broadcaster
Dr Suze Kundu, materials chemist and science communicator
Jon Butterworth, professor of physics
Angela Saini, author and science journalist
Pete Etchells, science writer and senior lecturer in psychology
Dr Andrew Steele, chair of Science is Vital
Heydon Prowse, BAFTA winning director, writer and comedian
Dr Aysha Raza -
Ealing councillor and NHS campaigner

I didn't photograph them all, though some are in my pictures here and from the march where you may recognise them. Most I didn't know and haven't named.
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Reform Family Courts

Kensington Gardens, London. Sat 22 Apr 2017

People listen to speeches at the Peter Pan statue in Kensington Gardens
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Campaigners, including many who have suffered injustice in our secret Family Court system and from police and social services, marched from Parliament to a rally at the Peter Pan statue in Kensington Gardens highlight the urgent need for reform.

Several speakers told horrendous real life stories of children being taken away from victims of domestic violence, mothers who had reported child abuse by partners or former partners, and other injustices.

Some present were unable to speak as they were gagged by court orders made in secret, and a woman at the protest was being forced to live away from friends, job and family. Another told us of the battle she had to regain her daughter, taking 7 years and costing her £14,000.

Present at the protest was the father of Hayley Gascoigne, a 32 year-old mother of four who collapsed after being given a judgment in a family court hearing in Hull on January 26.

A more controversial figure who spoke was Sir Benjamin Slade, who owns two castles in Somerset and was earlier in the week in the news for advertising for a young wife to serve his needs. He spoke about a former worker for his estates who had approached him for help after social services had taken away his children for what appeared to be trivial reasons. Sir Ben had a chat with a friend who was editor of a major newspaper and mounted a campaign which was eventually successful in getting the children returned. He was currently involved in the case of a young woman who was being forced against her will to live in Torquay and was at the protest with him.

The protest, and another in Nottingham, had been arranged to support a particular woman currently involved in a case in the family court, but on the previous afternoon a family court judge had ruled that her name could not be mentioned. Although we all knew her name, we would be committing an offence if we named her - and the protest became known simply as Justice4S.

The protesters want reform of the Family court, Police and Social Services and Justice system to make the decisions of these courts open and accountable and to bring an end to the failures, corruption and system abuse that has happened to them, and to end the covering up of failures by police and social services. They call for better training for police and social services in dealing with abuse victims and for a register of stalkers and an end to unfair gagging orders.
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Scientists march for Science

Kensington, London. Sat 22 Apr 2017
The march starts on Exhibition Road
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Thousands of scientists and supporters of science gathered outside the Science Museum to march through London to a rally at Parliament to celebrate the vital role that science plays in our lives and to call for an end to the fake news and fake science such as climate denial by politicians such as Trump which will prove disastrous.

They want the UK and other governments to base their policies on proven research rather than anecdote and prejudice, and call for the international cooperation in science threatened by Brexit and isolationism around the world to be protected.

It was a considerably more nerdy protest than most, and some of the posters and placards were difficult event for someone like me with a couple of science degrees in my past to understand. Many scientists do seem to have a problem in communicating with the rest of us and write slogans like 'Do I have large P-value? Cos I feel Insignificant' or 'dT=α.ln(C1/C0)'.

I left the march as the end of it turned into the Kensington Road on its way to Parliament Square and walked into Kensington Gardens where another event was about to take place. Later I made my way to the rally in Parliament Square - see above.
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Valley Gardens

Virginia Water, Surrey. Fri 21 Apr 2017

Skunk lily
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A family walk in Virginia Water.

Mainly we were around the Valley Gardens, which were full of rhododendrons in flower, and I took a few pictures. They were quite impressive and I'm told it will be a long time before there is such a great display, as the whole area is to be renewed and cut back as the bushes are getting too large. It will be some years before they return to be as prolific as this year. After walking around we went and had a pub lunch which as fairly forgettable.
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Richmond to Greenford

London. Sat 15 April 2017

Canalside dock at Brentford which has now lost its roof and become an art project
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I walked this section of the Capital Ring with Linda on 'Holy Saturday'.

I'm not really a great fan on designated walks such as this, but I had bought her the book on the Capital Ring. But personally I'd rather either just set off from somewhere and go whichever way looks most interesting - as I did most of the time taking the pictures in London Dérives, or spend time looking at OS Maps and planning my own routes. But at least with paths like the Capital Ring you know that you are not going to have to hack through 6 foot nettle beds or illegal barbed wire or face too many raging bulls - and one is too many.

This wasn't the most exciting of walks for me, as we'd walked half of it - along by the Brent - in the opposite direction a few months earlier. But it was pleasant enough if just a little on the long side for my aging knees, and both start and finish easy (and cheap) to reach by public transport.

From Richmond the walk goes by the river and across the lock bridge to Isleworth, where we stopped briefly for a pint and a coffee in the Swan Inn. Riverside development has spoiled the place a little (and more happening now) but it still retains some of the old character. The pub where I bought my first pint of beer when I was a Senior Sea Scout (for 1s5d) has gone, now a private house, but there are still a few left, including the famous London Apprentice, always worth avoiding.

The tide was low and we could have walked across to the Ait, and I remember paddling and swimming here as a boy - and I think the odd outing in a boat when I was a scout (I leant to row badly), as well as rather more often taking the ferry with my family across the river to Kew Gardens.

I'd done the next part of the walk to Brentford through Syon Park recently too, a year or so ago with my elder son, and then the path along the towpath beside the Grand Union many times, both walking and on my bike. The short section from Brentford Bridge to the railway line is saddening, with new waterside developments having almost completely destroyed its character.

The next five miles or so by the canal and then the RIver Brent is largely unexciting. Too much green, and too little incident until you reach the splendid Hanwell VIaduct, and beyond that Brent Lodge Park. Beyond that the final 2.5 miles seemed rather tedious, and I was getting hot and tired and would happily have given up and taken the bus if my partner had allowed.
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Good Friday procession of witness

Staines, Middx. Fri 14 Apr 2017

A man wheels a cross in the High St
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Christians in Staines held a procession of witness on Good Friday, marching behind the Salvation Army band through the High St to the Two Rivers shopping estate where they held a service and gave out free hot cross buns with a flier explaining their significance.
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St Paul's - Ecce Homo twice

City of London. Thu 13 Apr 2017

Mark Wallinger's life size sculpture Ecce Homo at the top of the steps of St Paul's Cathedral
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Amnesty International and artist Mark Wallinger in collaboration with St Paul's Cathedral display his statue of Jesus with a crown of golden barbed wire rather than thorns, Ecce Homo, on the steps of the cathedral "to highlight the plight of those who face torture or execution or imprisonment for their political, religious or other beliefs."

The sculpture had looked small and insignificant when it was the first to be displayed on the fourth plinth in Trafalgar Square seemed far better suited to its location on the steps, where people could approach it closely. Roughly life-size (who knows how tall Jesus was, many tourists took the opportunity to be photographed standing alongside it, though I rather thought they detracted from its impact, and photographed the statue without them.

Around the corner, another man was on display, fully clothed and sitting on another set of Cathedral steps, wearing a white dunces cap with eye holes and the word 'SINNER' on it. He sat ignoring questions from onlookers and read the Times Literary Supplement dated the following day.
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Axe subsidy to massive polluter Drax

City of London. Thu 13 Apr 2017

Drax gets £600m environmental subsidy for massive pollution from biomass
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Environmental campaigners from Biofuelwatch, Axe Drax and London Rising Tide protest outside the offices of Schroders and Invesco, the major shareholders in Drax, the UK’s largest and most polluting power station.

Drax mainly burns coal from Colombia, where open cast mining is causing large-scale human rights abuses, land grabs and water and air pollution, but it also burns 13 millions of tons of wood pellets per year, mainly from clear cutting highly diverse coastal wetland forests in southern USA.

Drax receives a huge £1.5m per day subsidy from our electricity bills intended to finance clean renewable energy despite scientific studies showing burning wood is environmentally disastrous, producing large amounts of carbon dioxide when burnt and eliminating for many years the capacity of the forests which are felled to absorb carbon.

The protest was held while the Drax AGM was taking place in York, probably moved there to avoid the protests outside it that have taken place every year in London. A protest was also taking place in York.
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Human Chain at Latin Village

Seven Sisters, London. London.Sat 8th Apr 2017

Campaigners to save the Latin Village form a human chain around the block
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A lively protest supporting the Save Latin Village Campaign opposed the demolition of the largest Latin American community market in England at Seven Sisters in north London.

They want to save this community resource against the plans for demolition, part of the ongoing social cleansing and gentrification of the block by Haringey Council with property developers, which would replace it with expensive flats and chain stores, profiting investors at the expense of the community.

In 2008 London Mayor Boris Johnson wrote asking the council to review the scheme, but the council now plan to go ahead. The afternoon protest included dancers, samba bands and a human chain around the block, and was continuing into the evening when I left for home.
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March Against Chemical Warfare in Syria

Marble Arch, London. London. Sat 8th Apr 2017

The protest goes down Oxford St
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Protesters met at Marble Arch to march along Oxford St on their way to a rally at Downing St against Assad's use of chemical weapons in Syria.

The protest, organised by RefugEase and Syria Solidarity Campaign calls on the UK Government to protect civilians in Syria and to support Syrians as they struggle to survive against a regime determined to exterminate them.

The attack on Khan Sheikhoon near Idlib on April 4th, like that on Ghouta three years ago, used Sarin nerve agent, this time killing over 100 and injuring over 400.

I left the march as it went along Oxford St to catch the tube at Oxford Circus.
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Boat dwellers fight evictions

Embankment Gardens, London. Sat 8th Apr 2017

People sit and listen to speeches in Embankment Gardens
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Boat dwellers, including many families, held a rally before they march to Downing St and DEFRA to demand the Canal & River Trust (CRT) stops evicting or threatening to evict boat dwellers without permanent moorings.

They say the right to use and live on a boat without a permanent mooring on CRT waterways is enshrined in the British Waterways Act 1995 and that the CRT is acting unlawfully in imposing limitations based on minimum distance of movement or pattern of travel.

They also demand the CRT be told to abandon plans for chargeable bookable moorings and to stop selling off our waterways. They want proper maintenance of locks, bridges and waterway banks; more mooring rings; more water taps and more sanitary facilities.

I left for another protest as a succession of people were speaking and the march seemed unlikely to start for some while.
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Zuma Must Go

Trafalgar Square, London. Sat 8 April 2017

A woman blows a vuvuzela in the crowd at the protest
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South Africans protested outside the South African High Commission in London in defence of South Africa's democracy and called for the removal of President Zuma.

They say he has threatened our economy by firing Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan and his deputy, Mcebisi Jonas on the strength of a bizarre and seemingly last minute “security report”.

The large crowd was tightly packed into a small area outside South Africa House and the police had to move some barriers to allow them to use part of the road. Even then parts of the crowd near the centre of the protest were still too tightly packed to allow me to get close enough to really photograph the event properly, and I left to go elsewhere while the event still had several hours to run - and more were still arriving.
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Property Developer's Awards

Grosvenor House Hotel, Mayfair, London. Tue 4 April 2017
Property developers are awarded with horse manure and cockroaches for their contribution to homelessness
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Protesters outside the Grosvenor House Hotel where the annual Property Developers Awards were being held call those entering scum and parasites for contributing to the housing crisis and homelessness.

The protesters, who included queer coalition the Sexual Avengers and Class War say the developers demolishing social housing and community facilities across London in a process of social cleansing aided by largely Labour councils and led by Savills who sponsor the awards and were nominated for six of them. They are demolishing council estates and replacing most of their social housing with high cost private developments, often largely sold to foreign investors and making obscene profits - and tickets for this event were £396 per seat.

During the protest with a group crowding the narrow pavement of Park Lane with posters, placards and banners and making a great deal of noise and making those atttending the event aware of what they thought of them, activists rushed up anActivists dumped a sack of horse manure and coackroaches at the hotel entrance.
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UAF protest extreme right marches

Westminster, London. Sat 1 Apr 2017

Protesters look towards the EDL and Britain First protests a hunred yards down the Embankment
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The UAF and others opposing the Britain First and EDL marches had been restricted by police to holding a static protest on the Embankment, and had been harassed and attacked by police as they moved from their previously advertised meeting point opposite South Africa House down Whitehall to reach the area they were allowed to protest in.

This was around a hundred yards south of where the extreme right rallies were taking place close to each other, and there were extensive barriers and many police to stop the two sides approaching each other. When I was photographing the right wing rallies I could see the UAF and hear that they were shouting 'Fascist Scum off our streets' and other slogans, and that there were also some speeches.

But I could not walk along the embankment between the two groups, and by the time I had finished photographing the fascists and walked the quarter-mile detour that was necessary many of the counter-protesters had left for home and the speeches had ended.
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Britain First & EDL exploit London attack

Westminster, London. Sat 1 Apr 2017

Paul Golding in front of the Britain First banner
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Marches and rallies by Britain First and the EDL (English Defence League) in reaction to the London terror attack were opposed by the Anti-Fascist Network, London Antifascists and Unite Against Fascism (UAF) who accuse the extremist right of using the attack to fuel their anti-Muslim and anti-migrant racist propaganda.

Police had issued restrictions on the two marches, confining them to defined routes, and on the UAF allowing only a static protest. There were scuffles and arrests as police attacked the anti-fascists as they moved from their meeting point in Trafalgar Square to the protest area on the Embankment, past a pub where the EDL were meeting, with some heavy-handed attacks on protesters and at least one photographer.

The EDL were forced to retreat back into the pub where they were meeting until the police cleared the area. The two marches then went ahead, both with a large police escort.
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Iraqis protest US killing in Mosul

Downing St, London. Sat 1 Apr 2017

A woman holds up a photograph showing the devastation caused by US bombing in Mosul
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Iraqis, mainly women dressed in black, protested opposite Downing St against the civilians killed by US and Iraqi forces in the assault on Mosul.

The say that hundreds have been killed by US air strikes after being told to stay in Mosul. Some people were prevented from leaving and then bombed. The protest was organised by a group of Iraqi women, one of whom told me a nine-year old relative in Mosul had died earlier today. The women held up photographs showing some results of the US bombing.
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Youth protest over housing benefits loss

Parliament Square, London. Sat 1 Apr 2017

Young protesters came to Parliament Square against the scrapping of housing benefits for 18-21 yr-olds
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A grass roots group of young people, '#1821Resist', came to Parliament Square to protest against the scrapping of housing benefit for young people which comes into force today.

They say that under Tory rule since 2010 homelessness has doubled and that this change will continue to leave vulnerable people without homes, making it almost impossible for them to get into work or education.
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Flowers for London Victims

Westminster, London. Sat 1 Apr 2017
People photograph the flowers left on the lampposts of Waterloo Bridge
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Ten Days after the Westminster terror attack by a deranged driver, people are still stopping to look and and photograph the flowers for the victims, around the lamp standards on Waterloo Bridge, along the whole of the front of Parliament Square and in front of New Scotland Yard in its new building on the Victoria Embankment, where an eternal flame also remembers all police who have died while doing their duty.
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Motorcycle Theft Protest Ride

Westminster, London. Sat 1 Apr 2017

Riders wait at the traffic lights to ride around Parliament Square
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Hundreds of bike riders set out on two rides from the Ace Café in Stonebridge and Greenwich into central London to raise awareness about the growing problem of motorbike theft and I photographed them in and around Parliament Square.

Home Office statistics show a rise of motorbike thefts of 44% between 2012 and 2016, and bikes are being targeted by organised gangs armed with cordless disc cutters which can cut through any lock.

The petition to the Mayor of London and the Home Secretary asks for the police to be given greater resources to tackle this crime, and for them to give it higher priority, for more ground anchors in bike parking bays and for tougher sentencing of offenders.

The rides were safe and well-stewarded but made quite a noise, but unfortunately were well spread out by the time they reached Westminster, reducing their impact.
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London Images

April 2017

No shortage of buses on Westminster Bridge - but not going anywhere
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As well as the usual images from my train of Vauxhall and Nine Elms, and of the budilng work on the Shell Centre site, there are just a few more from around London and a couple from Milton Keynes seem also to have crept in.
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