Despite protestors being evicted from outside St Pauls Cathedral in London, Nottingham City Council has said they have no intention of doing the same to those of the Occupy movement in Market Square.
The Occupy camp has been running for more than two months, and protestors say they’re in it for the long haul.
Occupy Nottingham started on October 15th as a protest against money spent by corporate organisations which they believe they could be spent elsewhere like the NHS and public services.
James Forben is a newer member to the camp.
He said: “We’re staying as long as we can. Not because we want to live here but so we can make a point and make change happen.”
The Occupy camp is constantly changing as more people decide to join them. What started out as just four tents is now a busy camp of around 35 tents.
James joined on Day 24.
He said: “At first I thought what’s the point of protesting, but then I met some of the people here and went on a demo with them and I learnt a lot so I decided to join.
“Sometimes it can be difficult – it’s quite tiring and we’re all really cold and we’ve had some people from the public making threats – but we’re all on high alert and it’s really good, I’ve met some great people who’ve educated me here.”
Protestors want to spread the message that they are a non hostile group and are respectful to the people of Nottingham. On October 21st the camp was moved from one end of Market Square to the other to make room for the GameCity exhibition and Christmas market.
Although the camp is always expanding protestors enforce that no one can just walk in and join. Some of the members have been asked to leave after being disrespectable.
Jamie Needham, a member of the camp, said: “We have a strict no drugs and alcohol policy but some people weren’t following it so they had to go. We’ve got a lot of kids here and we need to protect ourselves more than anything.”
At the entrance to the camp is a list of questions for people who want to join:
1. Do you know why we are here
2. Do you have any skills you can bring to the camp
3. What are your personal feelings and reasons for giving your time here
Occupy Protestors say they have had a positive response from the public and believe what they’re doing is having an impact on others.
Jamie said: “Four weeks ago no one was talking about the issues we are raising but they are starting to now. If we’ve achieved something that’s one step forward, although we’ve still got a long way to go.”
By Natalie Garland