I will blog about the whole day when I get home as it was facking ace, but for now I’m just going to focus on Trafalgar Square last night.
When we got there, the party was in full swing, and that’s what it was – a party. There were a couple of sound systems and a few hundred protesters chilling, laughing, chatting and dancing. The atmosphere was similar to that of a festival. After the mentalness of the day it was a perfect ruddy end. Well, until the Met decided to fuck the non-confrontational policing they’d had to submit to all day, and most of them seemed to be loving it!
We were over to one side of Nelson’s Column and away from the bigger crowds as Cosmo had just played a set there, when we noticed the police going into the main crowd and snatching folks out. Then the riot squad appeared by the National Gallery and I thought ‘here we go’ – and in I went. Well, we were there for an occupation and due to the positive, peaceful atmosphere I felt that their presence was unnecessary.
By the time I was back in the crowd, they’d moved onto the Square and I joined the frontline and the chants such as ‘it’s your jobs too, it’s your lives too, it’s your children too’. This went on for a bit and as it died down I looked around and we were surrounded. I asked one of the TSG (Territorial Support Group) coppers why we were being kettled for having a peaceful, if lively, party.
“It’s not kettling, it’s containment” was his reply.
I then felt a hard smack on the back of my head. I looked behind me and there was a barrier lying on the ground.
“Did that just hit me?” I asked the same copper.
“Yep” he said. “you shouldn’t be here then, should you.”
No ‘are you alright?’ or ‘do you want a medic’. But this just showed them up to be the programmed, heartless cunts that they are. I asked if I could leave and he just shook his head.
I got into conversation with one of the non-face covered coppers about the cuts and enquired as to how aware he was of the affects it would have on him and his family. He seemed just as concerned as the rest of us and keen to talk about it. After chatting with him for a few minutes, what I assume was his superior orificer pulled him back and did a bit of talking in his ear. He didn’t return to the front, and I was then hit around the head with a shield as they went for a push forward.
The TSG’s (the ones with their faces covered) were really aggressive and constantly shoving folks with their shields. Mostly short, sharp shoves to those either trying to converse with them or just standing within reach. the only incitement going on was from them and a few protesters on the plinths of Nelson’s column throwing water bottles. Fucking thugs, you may think. Dunno. When an animal is cornered its natural instinct is to lash out. That instinct extends to humans. Chuck some adrenalin in there and you’re going to get allsorts of reactions. This chucking stuff wasn’t constant though, or full on. The media coverage is bollocks.
I just wanted to get out, so I worked my way around the arc of old bill trying to find another vaguely human one. I was shoved more and took another smack on the head, AFTER telling them I’d been hit by a flying barrier, as they pushed us into a smaller space. They were up on the monument by this point too. they must have been letting folks out somewhere as protester numbers seemed to be dwindling.
So I kept trying to talk to them about the cuts and asking if I could go now. Reactions were mostly accusing me of violent disorder, if I got a reaction instead of killer cold looks at all. Then i asked where I could have a piss.
“Over there” one said and vaguely pointed.
“Can you be more specific?” I asked.
“No. Go where you like.” he replied. There was nowhere to go.
“Ok, thanks. If that’s the case, I’ll go here.” And that’s what I did. Got down and did a big piss right in front of them. Their faces! Think I even clocked some vague change of expression on a couple of the TSGs half-hidden mugs. Shook, got up, and said “See, I really did need that.” as it headed stream-like towards their boots.
There was a first-aider among the protesters who checked me out after seeing me standing alone and looking a bit vague for a bit. He thought I was concussed and got me to drink some water. Thanks go out to him for spotting me.
After much dotting out to the riot line and back in to the middle again, I eventually found a woman copper who was prepared to listen to the fact that I’d had a big bang on the head and didn’t feel right and needed to get out. She didn’t have her face covered and she looked pretty terrified by the whole thing. The bloke next to her, who did have his face covered, couldn’t resist nudging me with his shield as I spoke to her though. Cunt. She got a medic for me who did nothing but look at my eyes. I told them they could verify what happened with their colleagues as they watched it happen then refused to get me any help or leave. I was instructed to go around the back of the column and to keep walking. I couldn’t resist a last grin at them all. Well, it was good to be out!
Most of the folks I was kettled in with weren’t throwing stuff. The ones I was chatting with hadn’t been smashing shit up all day. They’d been protesting peacefully and then up for a party. Almost ALL of the ones I spoke with had been hit with shields WITHOUT being confrontational. The police were unnecessarily brutal in Trafalgar Square last night. In fact, their presence in that capacity was completely uncalled for.
So I took three blows to the head, two of which were definitely the old bill. I also have a bruised nose, several small bruises on my arms and legs and even a cut and bruise UNDER my 20 hole Docs. I vaguely remember being kicked and shoved to the ground by the nice orificers too.
Most of the media cover on the ‘Battle of Trafalgar’ is complete and utter bollocks. That is all.