Takeover of Barclays BankTagged as: economic_crisis ukuncut
Neighbourhoods: bd1 bradford
Published by group: IMC Northern England
Around 20 people took over the foyer of Barclays Bank in Bradford city centre this morning and turned it into an impromptu library as part of the UK Uncut day of action. The action was taken in protest at the huge bonuses being paid to top bankers, as well as huge tax avoidance by Barclays bank, whilst cuts are being made to libraries and other public services.
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Upon arrival at the bank at around 11am, the protesters held a 'read-in' and set up a library within the foyer, handing out leaflets to users of the bank explaining why the action was being taken.
Initially, the police responded by sending in around 8 officers, including undercover plain clothes officers who initially refused to identify themselves when asked. After a legal observer pointed out to them that this was unlawful, they eventually relented and showed their ID and gave their badge numbers (although one said that they were lying and this wasn't their real number as they did so).
A journalist was threatened with arrest for taking photos of the arrival of the police at the bank. It was pointed out that this was unlawful yet the threat was not dropped. The journalist continued but no arrest was made.
The action continued peacefully (other than the reading out of stories to the group) until around 12pm when the protesters left and joined a rally in Centenary Square where speakers and union officials gave speeches against the cuts to a crowd of around 50 people.
A call was made for people to attend a meeting of Bradford council to voice their dissent on thursday 24th February where the local cuts will be voted on by the council. People were also urged to attend the mass rally organised by the TUC in London on 26th March.
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