The early part of the march saw less of a crowd than previous demonstrations and RiverOnline reporters at Westminster described the march as “disorganised” adding live on the Twitter feed “there are more police than students”.
A planned march towards parliament in London did not take place and there was much confusion about where the march was headed. Students dispersed amongst Westminster playing what was described as a ‘cat and mouse game’ with police to avoid being kettled.
Most of the protesters arrested for breach of the peace had refused to leave when asked to do so by the police. It was during the later hours that violent scuffles broke out between police and protesters, leaving one officer injured and seven protesters arrested for violent disorder.
Meanwhile protests and sit-ins were taking part all over the country and although arrests were made in other cities, 10 in Bristol and five in Manchester, on the whole it was more peaceful outside the city and numbers were much lower than at previous protests perhaps due to the freezing weather.
No action took place at Kingston University, although the main car park was closed and a van full of police officers were in attendance. They had been called by the university which believed students were going to start a sit-in.
Inspector Daniel Thorpe said “We are here to support KU security with a planned student sit it, but it’s looking to be a peaceful day.”
There was no sit-in, although KU’s education activists did hold a meeting in the John Galsworthy building.
Across London, students at UCL who have been holding a sit-in for more than a week, could face eviction after lawyers for the university went to the high court to seek an injunction.
Meanwhile, the NUS has called for a national day of lobbying on Thursday 9 December, the day parliament votes on the education bill.