Occupy London set to be evicted

LONDON-- Standing outside St. Paul’s Cathedral in central London on Friday, a cluster of Occupy London protesters looked in dire need of a coffee. 

An Occupy London sign outside St. Paul’s Cathedral. (Karla Adam)

He was referring to the bailiffs who are set to evict the multi-colored tent city that has been nestled for the last four months next to the iconic church where Lady Diana wed Prince Charles.  

Occupy London’s eviction appeal was dismissed earlier this week, meaning the City of London Corporation, which, along with the church, jointly owns the land, is free to oust the protesters.

On Friday, the site still looked very occupied. About 100 tents were pitched around the church and music from an over-enthusiastic tambourine player filled the air.

But the camp is a shell of what it was when it attracted the likes of Radiohead’s Thom Yorke and fashion designer Vivienne Westwood. The kitchen, library and “information tent” are gone because, protesters say, they don’t want them destroyed in the eviction, which several said they expect this weekend.

The Occupy London site Friday. (Karla Adam)

“There is the camp, and then there is the movement, which is still going strong," said Ronan McNern, 36, a protester and spokesman for Occupy London.

McNern said some of their upcoming projects included a record to be released next month with tracks from Ani DiFranco and Billy Bragg;  a 134-mile walk through London; and a school outreach program -- more than 30 schools have approached Occupy London about doing workshops, he said. 

And St. Paul's won't be rid entirely of the protesters: they plan to return on Saturday afternoons to host their generally assembly. 

Karla Adam is a reporter in the Washington Post’s London bureau. Before joining the Post in 2006, she worked as a freelancer in London for the New York Times and People magazine.


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