Skip Navigation | Sheffield IMC | UK IMC | Editorial Guidelines | Mission Statement | About Us | Contact | Help | Support Us

UK Indymedia UK Indymedia Sheffield Indymedia Sheffield Indymedia

Lib Dem conference: Reports from Sheffield under siege

The Fargate Speaker | 13.03.2011 11:52 | Social Struggles | Workers' Movements | Sheffield

A report on actions taking place as part of the opposition to the Liberal Democrat conference on Saturday 12th May.

The Lib Dems are in town! And Clegg and his bandits want protection from the angry people whose jobs and services they have been systematically cutting since they gained power. South Yorkshire police abridged with a thousand strong police force in the city centre, mobile barricades, surveillance and a steel ring around City Hall. The police had been bandying about figures of a ten thousand strong demonstration over the weekend. A figure not a single activist on the ground agreed with and was clearly a pre-text to justify the reported £2m cost of the entire operation. An expense that clearly flies in the face of local people who have been told in the past months of the need to tighten their belts and accept harsh and “unavoidable” cuts to public services. There is a general suspicion that this was a bit of a trial run for March 26th and the type of tactics deployed on the day seem to confirm this fact.

In the end around five thousand people turned out for the main demonstration on the Saturday. A good turn-out in spite of the predicted figures and generally a good atmosphere with groups from all areas of life that are currently being affected by the Con-Dem agenda. The speeches were, predictably, a staid affair, dominated by trade union bureaucrats and self-appointed leaders of the movement. Thankfully the vibrancy of those marching injected a bit of life into the event in spite of this. The anarchists formed their own bloc with individuals from Sheffield Student Occupation and members of People and Planet (who had also brought a bicycle powered sound system to provide a soundtrack to our march). The “friendly face” of S. Yorkshire police was on show as well with liaison officers deployed throughout the crowd, not evidence gathering teams at all honest!, there to assure us that we “weren’t gunna be caged” in front of City Hall and honestly inquire where we were from, who we were associated with and what our plans were. Direct action had been promised by some Trotskyist groups for in front of City Hall, unsurprisingly they failed to deliver (a single student from Nottingham let off a flare and was arrested scaling the fence). Clearly selling papers was a far better use of their time than disrupting the conference. Aware that this would be the case, the libertarian bloc opted to take matters into their own hands, decided not to enter the “freedom cage” in front of City Hall and split from the main demonstration for a direct-action-tour of Fargate.

Tax dodgers and bail-out banks were targeted in a series of “bail-ins” made all the more entertaining by the sound system in tow. A number of locals even joined the festivities and people were generally very supportive. One activist reported a local say, upon seeing fifty masked troublemakers charge down Fargate, “This is what they ALL should be doing!”. Despite the size of the operation S. Yorkshire police were totally unprepared and Topshop, Vodafone, Natwest and Boots were all shut down. When the response finally did come it was predictably violent. The successful use of de-arrest and anti-kettling tactics meant no one was arrested. Unfortunately a small group did get kettled on Fargate for a short period of time. Police were indiscriminate in detaining people trapping a few local people who weren’t part of the protest but just happened to look alternative. A fifteen year-old girl was punched in the face at this point and a mother pushed to the floor while with her kid. Locals were on the case though and thanks to a load of hassle the cops quickly realised they would have to release the kettle, marching them back to the cage in front of City Hall only for everyone to quickly disperse. Overall it was a successful day made all the more successful by no arrests.

These direct action tactics need to be applied on a mass scale if we are to be successful in beating the wave of cuts and austerity measures. Direct action really does get the goods! We showed what we could do with just fifty people. Imagine what could be done if we had just three or four times that willing to take things into their own hands. This means the end of A-B marches, no more leaders and bureaucrats bleating on about writing to your MPs. It means real action led by those affected pushing the ONLY real alternative – anti-capitalism.

The Fargate Speaker
- e-mail: fargatespeaker@gmail.com
- Homepage: http://thefargatespeaker.wordpress.com

Download this article in pdf format >>

Email this article to someone >>

Submit an addition or make a quick comment on this article >>

Additions

Raving in Boots

13.03.2011 14:45

anarchist


Publish

Publish your news

Do you need help with publishing?

Kollektives

Birmingham
Cambridge
Liverpool
London
Oxford
Sheffield
South Coast
Wales
World

Other UK IMCs
Bristol/South West
London
Northern Indymedia
Scotland

Sheffield Topics

Afghanistan
Analysis
Animal Liberation
Anti-Nuclear
Anti-militarism
Anti-racism
Bio-technology
Climate Chaos
Culture
Ecology
Education
Energy Crisis
Fracking
Free Spaces
Gender
Globalisation
Health
History
Indymedia
Iraq
Migration
Ocean Defence
Other Press
Palestine
Policing
Public sector cuts
Repression
Social Struggles
Technology
Terror War
Workers' Movements
Zapatista

Sheffield [navigation.actions2016]

Sheffield [navigation.actions2015]

Sheffield [navigation.actions2014]

NATO 2014

Sheffield Actions 2013

G8 2013

Sheffield Actions 2012

Workfare

Sheffield Actions 2011

2011 Census Resistance
August Riots
Dale Farm
J30 Strike
Occupy Everywhere

Sheffield Actions 2010

Flotilla to Gaza
Mayday 2010
Tar Sands

Sheffield Actions 2009

COP15 Climate Summit 2009
G20 London Summit
Guantánamo
Indymedia Server Seizure
University Occupations for Gaza

Sheffield Actions 2008

2008 Days Of Action For Autonomous Spaces
Campaign against Carmel-Agrexco
Climate Camp 2008
G8 Japan 2008
SHAC
Smash EDO
Stop Sequani Animal Testing
Stop the BNP's Red White and Blue festival

Sheffield Actions 2007

Climate Camp 2007
DSEi 2007
G8 Germany 2007
Mayday 2007
No Border Camp 2007

Sheffield Actions 2006

April 2006 No Borders Days of Action
Art and Activism Caravan 2006
Climate Camp 2006
Faslane
French CPE uprising 2006
G8 Russia 2006
Lebanon War 2006
March 18 Anti War Protest
Mayday 2006
Oaxaca Uprising
Refugee Week 2006
Rossport Solidarity
SOCPA
Transnational Day of Action Against Migration Controls
WSF 2006

Sheffield Actions 2005

DSEi 2005
G8 2005
WTO Hong Kong 2005

Sheffield Actions 2004

European Social Forum
FBI Server Seizure
May Day 2004
Venezuela

Sheffield Actions 2003

Bush 2003
DSEi 2003
Evian G8
May Day 2003
No War F15
Saloniki Prisoner Support
Thessaloniki EU
WSIS 2003

Server Appeal Radio Page Video Page Indymedia Cinema Offline Newsheet

insecure Unencrypted Page

We suggest you use an encrypted connection encrypted connection for browsing this site.

Please install the CAcert root certificate to verify the authenticity of the site, for more information see the security page.

IMCs


www.indymedia.org

Projects
print
radio
satellite tv
video

Africa

Europe
antwerpen
armenia
athens
austria
barcelona
belarus
belgium
belgrade
brussels
bulgaria
calabria
croatia
cyprus
emilia-romagna
estrecho / madiaq
galiza
germany
grenoble
hungary
ireland
istanbul
italy
la plana
liege
liguria
lille
linksunten
lombardia
madrid
malta
marseille
nantes
napoli
netherlands
northern england
nottingham imc
paris/île-de-france
patras
piemonte
poland
portugal
roma
romania
russia
sardegna
scotland
sverige
switzerland
torun
toscana
ukraine
united kingdom
valencia

Latin America
argentina
bolivia
chiapas
chile
chile sur
cmi brasil
cmi sucre
colombia
ecuador
mexico
peru
puerto rico
qollasuyu
rosario
santiago
tijuana
uruguay
valparaiso
venezuela

Oceania
aotearoa
brisbane
burma
darwin
jakarta
manila
melbourne
perth
qc
sydney

South Asia
india


United States
arizona
arkansas
asheville
atlanta
Austin
binghamton
boston
buffalo
chicago
cleveland
colorado
columbus
dc
hawaii
houston
hudson mohawk
kansas city
la
madison
maine
miami
michigan
milwaukee
minneapolis/st. paul
new hampshire
new jersey
new mexico
new orleans
north carolina
north texas
nyc
oklahoma
philadelphia
pittsburgh
portland
richmond
rochester
rogue valley
saint louis
san diego
san francisco
san francisco bay area
santa barbara
santa cruz, ca
sarasota
seattle
tampa bay
united states
urbana-champaign
vermont
western mass
worcester

West Asia
Armenia
Beirut
Israel
Palestine

Topics
biotech

Process
fbi/legal updates
mailing lists
process & imc docs
tech