The annual May Day TUC protest made its return to Nottingham this weekend, with an environmental theme fit for Extinction Rebellion.
The parade, held on the weekend of the May Day bank holiday, focuses on workers rights, and though that didn’t change this year, climate change was the dominant issue at this year’s gathering.
It was Nottingham’s nod to the Extinction Rebellion movement. Action by campaigners across London, has led to hundreds of arrests and brought traffic to a standstill.
Sam Harris, a first-year student in the city, helped organise the climate action bloc of the march. He says the protest in the capital has galvanised the eco-cause.
“I think that environmentalism’s really kicked up a notch, because are fed up. There’s a lot of the old school Greenpeace lot who’ve thought it’s going nowhere for years.
They now see Extinction Rebellion as the driving force that can create success.”
The parade made it’s way from the Brian Clough statue around Old Market Square, before making it’s way through city centre until it reached Sneinton Market. There, stalls advertising the causes were set up, with a stage for speeches, music and poetry throughout the afternoon.
Tens of people joined the march, which featured such diverse issues as Palestinian support, socialism and nuclear disarmament.
“My employers recently have asked me to volunteer because they can’t afford to pay me. This is what happens under austerity.”
Sam Harris, Climate Bloc Organiser
Martin Sleath, one of the organisers of the the parade and Nottingham’s Trades Council delegate, was mainly concerned with the city council’s budget cuts.
“Even the Nottingham City Council, which is really all Labour, is still implementing cuts. Their excuse is that the government is forcing them to do so. We argue they should resist that.”
Liam Conway, who was one of the organisers, hopes that the march will have highlighted certain causes to people living in Nottingham. No doubt, it’ll have definitely caught the public’s attention this weekend.