Wednesday, 30 November 2011

Taking to the Streets

A lovely clear day this morning - the roads were very quiet as parents were not involved with ferrying children to school
The skies were completely clear of vapour trails until later in the morning, suggesting that Bristol Airport had fewer flights than usual.
 Saw this "roof garden", i.e. the top of a garage
 Having looked at iPhone holders for potential use in the van,I came up with a low-tech, cheap and simple version - a lump of BluTack...
After lunch, Su dropped Bella and me down to Victoria Park.  Although retired I am still a member of my union (UCU) and so decided to withhold my labour from the marking pile today.  As Bella is a rescue dog, we do not know if she has ever been on a march, so today may have been her first political statement.  She did very well, not being particularly phased by the whistles and vuvuzelas - she was more interested in the tennis ball we found in the park.  Waiting for the march to form up, there were some speeches - and music provided by "Agitpop" - a great name, but the music was stuck in a 70s/80s time warp. "Stand Down Margaret" by The Beat has less bite 30 years on...
 These police were clearly not expecting us to start a riot...
 Banners ready for the march
 A shy member of my union
 Forming up behind the Bath Trades Council banner
 Not just union banners on display
 The march was big by cozy, sleepy Bath standards.  Estimates afterwards were as high as 1,500 people. Bella wasn't the only dog...
 A few people shouted out, "Get back to work" as we marched through Bath.  My response of "I'm a pensioner!" drew no response...  Chatted to this lone counter-protester for a minute - he was less reactionary than the picture might suggest.
 I was taken by this Janus-like protester, making a symbolic link with the Occupy movement
 The march wended its way along George Street, down Milsom Street, past the Theatre Royal and round Queens Square - where the Occupy encampment is set up.  I was impressed by this explanatory notice
 This is the Occupy camp
Some individualised and non-union banners..
A great example of a portable sound system - it was loud too!
 More individual posters - these made by proud children
 A lonely flag at the end of the rally
 The bandstand after all the speeches
 Another individual banner
 And all this took place in the lee of the Royal Crescent.
Fortunately the weather stayed clement throughout the march and speeches - just a bit of drizzle on the way back up the hill coming home. David Cameron is claiming these strikes are a damp squib, but time will prove him wrong...


  1. A brilliant report on a great demonstration!

  2. Thanks for the feedback - good to see so many people. Nothing like collective action to raise the spirits against the Tories and their cronies...

  3. Great photos, Marcus - good report. I didn't have a camera for Wolvershampton - shame on me!