A spot of impromptu fare-dodging followed by a lot of impromptu FIT team dodging meant that I didn’t even get close to the Class War meet up point.
Instead I was met with a wall of cops.
The fake police stall at the start of the march was a giggle, if unthreatening, but with FIT teams starting to stop and search I decided it was best to attempt to find the anarchist contingent.
Being the only (far from undercover) anarcho in a crowd of thousands of cops was at best surreal, punctuated by quick flashes of extreme anxiety and a compulsion to occasionally scream ‘I’m not with them’.
But, trapped as I was, I shuffled down Victoria Street generally avoiding eye contact and wishing I was somewhere else.
Hearing a scuffle I fell to the back of the march where a woman was being violently arrested (pics below). Ringed by aggro cops (trying to block photographers), it was hard to find out why, although one of the Met’s finest grunted at me: ‘Section 5, she was swearing’. Meanwhile the FIT team were photographed in Starbucks stocking up on doughnuts.
The cops all wore white caps, whether this was to symbolise their submissive, lackying to the state or a symbol of the preferred skin colour of officers was unclear. This march was very male, very white and very, very dull.
Out of uniform all coppers still look the same and still look like coppers. Some conspiracy theorists have speculated they were all cloned from a single pork sausage.
Cops marched in silence with nothing in the way of support from the general public who seemed to view the whole affair with mild disdain. And reports of 25,000 demonstraters in tonights sub-Standard are bollocks, you can halve that and then knock off a couple of thou’.
The mass lobby of parliament was also an abject failure with barely a handful committed enough to stay out of the pub. So much for the ‘7,000-10,000 policemen and women queuing outside the Palace of Westminster’ trumpeted on the Police Federation’s website.
Brian Haw and co were good value for money as ever, ranting at the cops mingling around Parliament Square after the march ended. But for this vegetarian the smell of bacon and cheap aftershave was a bit too much so I sloped off home before I got meself in trouble.
The good news is that, despite two arrests, the Class War counter-demo has been hailed a success. Early reports also reveal the BNP’s presence at the front of the cop’s march.
Fun and japes at the start of the march
Stop and search
Arrested for swearing?
A quick doughnut break
Coppers are definitely getting younger
Brian Haw and co doing what they do
The failed mass lobby, you can never find a copper when you need one
Where were all those missing coppers?
Police trash littered the streets of Westminster