To the chants “No one voted for Boris” and “Save our democracy, stop the coup” hundreds of thousands have marched in cities across the UK in the last three days. The central co-ordinating work was done by Another Europe is Possible, working with a broader coalition of left anti-Brexit campaigners. There were around 80 demonstrations on Saturday 31st.
Friday 30 August
200 people attended a lively protest in Darlington.
400 were on the protest in Leicester with Labour and trade union speakers. UCU members marched down in the city centre with placards and drums.
A comrade from Calderdale reports: "On the announcement of the coup, I was visiting Todmorden. I contacted the activists in Todmorden Ward Labour Party whom I'm in contact with regarding a demonstration against the "coup"; the Labour Party mailing list publicised a demonstration on Thursday and a lot of activists shared details of the event on social media. There were over 100 people attending outside Todmorden Town Hall, the majority of whom were Labour members. It was lively and got a generally good response from the passing traffic. It is planned to carry on every day at 5pm this coming week."
Saturday 31 August
5,000 attended a rally organised by Another Europe is Possible in George Square, Glasgow. Jeremy Corbyn spoke.
Up to 2,000 attended one of the biggest left rallies in Birmingham for many years. Several of the speakers said the issue was no longer Brexit but democracy and the need for a general election. This would be news to the vast majority of people out on the streets who want to stop Brexit and defend freedom of movement.
Certainly the 1000 in Manchester were largely Remainers according to our reports, with some from the Labour Party.
Some thousands also turned out in Nottingham for a rally organised by Another Europe is Possible. And 2000 attended a rally at Newcastle's Grey's Monument.
There were many protests in smaller cities and towns, for example 500 in Cambridge, 200 in Northampton (called by the NEU) and 200 in Tonbridge.
Around 4,000 in Sheffield at the rally called by the local Labour MPs. Good labour movement speakers but also, unfortunately Angela Smith, the former Labour MP who defected to Change UK.
Also 4000 in Leeds some Labour banners but only one, trade union banner (the NEU). Speakers included Labour MPs, UCU. There was a small breakaway march at the end of the rally.
London had an estimated 100,000 – enough to fill Parliament Street/Whitehall from Trafalgar Square to Westminster. After speeches which included John McDonnell, the static protest became a march. Protestors ended up on Waterloo Bridge and spontaneously sat down. More speeches were heard in an “open mic” session. People then headed down to Piccadilly, stopped traffic again, and back to Trafalgar Square. Another breakaway march went up the Mall to Buckingham Palace (no singing of “God Save the Queen, and her fascist regime” unfortunately, but a longer walk around London and back to Trafalgar Square followed. It seems that three people have been arrested and are being supported by organisers.
Monday 2 September
A protest outside Downing Street, was well-timed to completely drown out Boris Johnson's non-announcement. Around 500 people turned out for the protest and this was followed by an open Assembly.
What happens next? More protests!
The #StopTheCoup coalition are calling for daily protests, starting at 5.30pm across the country, a wave of civil disobedience.
Follow locations, https://www.stopthecoup.org.uk and on Twitter @stopthecoup_uk