07/08/2017

UK: Pro-EU activists to stage 'stop Brexit' marches


 It is only Monday, it is August, the quietest month in France's calendar, but it will be a busy day.
I'm officially on a break, working only part time and writing the first pages of two new book projects, but politics is never far away.

I won't leave France until the autumn normally and move on with a new job from September on a film.

But if you're in the UK, you might be interested in these two events:

Anti-Brexit March in London, on September 9th - meeting point : Hyde Park

Anti-Brexit March in Manchester on October 1st
Here is the event on Facebook:
https://www.facebook.com/events/193901264475628/?acontext=%7B%22action_history%22%3A%22[%7B%5C%22surface%5C%22%3A%5C%22page%5C%22%2C%5C%22mechanism%5C%22%3A%5C%22page_upcoming_events_card%5C%22%2C%5C%22extra_data%5C%22%3A[]%7D]%22%2C%22has_source%22%3Atrue%7D

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More events are on the way:



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More here:


Today in The Guardian:

Pro-EU activists to stage 'stop Brexit' march during Tory conference

Campaigners say aim is to make the Tories face the reality of Brexit, with thousands expected to turn out in Manchester


Pro-EU campaigners are planning to stage one of their biggest “stop Brexit” marches outside the Conservative party conference this autumn.
Campaigners said their aim was to make the party “face up to the reality of Brexit” when they march to the conference centre to make sure their voices are heard by delegates inside.
Thousands are expected to turn out for the rally, starting in Platt Fields in Manchester on the first day of the conference – the same day as the traditional anti-Tory and anti-austerity protests held outside the gathering, which begins on 1 October.
The pro-EU rally will involve a number of groups, which are said to be planning an “autumn of discontent” against Brexit. The People’s March for Europe is one of the campaigns orchestrating a protest in central London, marching from Hyde Park Corner to Parliament Square on 9 September.
The organisers are hoping to attract pro-EU Tories to the Manchester event. The lineup of speakers so far includes the the former Labour adviser Alastair Campbell, Prof AC Grayling and the former Lib Dem leader Nick Clegg.
Peter French of Unite for Europe said there were several pro-EU groups planning to march in the north of England for the first time and they were hoping to be joined by activists from Scotland and Northern Ireland.
“This is our chance to actually let the people in the north of England have their voices heard because they have been neglected in every other way and this is a chance to give them their voice as well,” he said.
“And this is a chance to hopefully start to turn this around. Our aim is to actually stop the Brexit process and I think things are beginning to turn in that direction. We have a long fight on our hands but I think it is something that is achievable.”
The march will be supported by the Liberal Democrats, breaking the traditional truce against disrupting other party conferences.
“Brexit is the battle of our lives and it is vital we make the Conservatives see the strength of feeling against their disastrous extreme Brexit, which threatens to crash the economy and damage the life chances of millions,” said Tom Brake, the Lib Dem MP for Carshalton and Wallington. “They are heading for the very most reckless of Brexits in the teeth of public opposition to leaving the single market
“Liberal Democrats didn’t take the decision lightly to protest at another party’s conference but we can’t ignore the harm Theresa May’s Brexit will do to future generations. Liberal Democrats on the march will protest peacefully and in good spirit but ministers should be under no illusions that a lot of people are very, very angry at their disastrous handling of Brexit, which has made a difficult situation a million times worse.”
Smaller pro-EU protests are also planned outside the Labour conference in Brighton (late September) and the Lib Dem conference in Bournemouth.

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The Standard:

Anti-Brexit campaigners planning wave of mass protests in 'autumn of discontent'




An anti-Brexit campaign group is planning a London march as part of a wave of mass protests next month for a wider event dubbed “the Autumn of Discontent”.
Campaign group the People’s March for Europe has organised a pro-EU rally in central London for September, which thousands of people have already pledged to attend.
Activists will march from Hyde Park Corner to Parliament Square on September 9 in protest against last year’s Brexit vote.
Backed by Star Trek actor Sir Patrick Stewart and former Labour spin-doctor Alastair Campbell, the group said the march will coincide with other events in Europe including political party conferences and stalls to be set up in busy town centres.
The group said the “Autumn of Discontent” is “set to bring the issue of Brexit and remaining in the EU to the forefront of political debate.”
Remain supporter Sir Patrick attacked Leave campaigners for misleading the public over Brexit. He said: “The Leave campaign was filled with disinformation and one huge falsehood  – the £350 million that was going to find its way into the NHS.
“That £350 million never existed. The people of the UK were misled. Monthly reports are published on the economic impact of leaving the union – and they are all negative.”’
The group said the “Autumn of Discontent” is “set to bring the issue of Brexit and remaining in the EU to the forefront of political debate.”
Remain supporter Sir Patrick attacked Leave campaigners for misleading the public over Brexit. He said: “The Leave campaign was filled with disinformation and one huge falsehood  – the £350 million that was going to find its way into the NHS.
“That £350 million never existed. The people of the UK were misled. Monthly reports are published on the economic impact of leaving the union – and they are all negative.”’
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BONUS 

An extract from my book, Out Of The Comfort Zone - about the history of the band Massive Attack and their city, Bristol (to be released in 2018 in the UK, French version already out), extract from the third chapter - "Underground Revolutions":



Bristol and the Punk Revolution

England, after the first oil shock in 1973, radically changes. Unemployment and inflation double in a few years. In 1976, the country’s revenue per habitant drops drastically. Under James Callaghan’s cabinet, the end of 1978 is baptised the “Winter of our Discontent” by The Sun’s columnist Larry Lamb, inspired by a quote from William Shakespeare’s Richard III (“Now is the Winter of our Discontent / Made glorious summer by this son of York”)[1]. Many strikes block the main cities. Consequently, public spending has to be limited and cultural infrastructures are the first to suffer until the election of a conservative cabinet, to be led by Margaret Thatcher, after the Tories’ victory at the general election on May the 4th, 1979. The country is progressively ravaged by mass unemployment and by a cultural void. This will soon encourage the birth of countercultures.



[1] On this topic, watch Channel 4’s documentary series: Secret History: Winter of Discontent (Brook Lapping Productions for Channel Four, 1998).

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