Search

Occupy London St Paul’s protesters set up camp on Hampstead Heath

PUBLISHED: 16:18 13 June 2012

Occupy London sets up camp on Hampstead Heath

Occupy London sets up camp on Hampstead Heath

Archant

An anti-capitalist protest group which occupied the steps of St Paul’s Cathedral for nearly five months has settled on Hampstead Heath.

Around a dozen Occupy London protesters pitched seven tents on the old hockey pitch on the Heath late on Tuesday night.

Their faces concealed in V for Vendetta masks, worn by anti-capitalist movements across Europe, camp leaders said they descended on the beauty spot to protest against its growing commercialisation.

Tammy Samede, 34, who claims to have lost her home earlier this year after representing the St Paul’s Occupy camp at the High Court, attacked the City of London Corporation’s management of Hampstead Heath.

She said: “Not happy with attacking the homeless in society, they have now put their tentacles out into the wider community.

“What are they doing on the Heath anyway? They are just gobbling up London’s open spaces. They should let the people have it back.”

She also branded controversial proposals to charge swimmers for using the Heath’s ponds – which have now been dropped – as “greedy”.

A spokesman for the City said camping on the Heath would not be tolerated, but would not comment on whether plans were being made to evict the camp.

The protesters said they have taken legal advice from a QC and will challenge any attempts to evict them through the courts.

Timothy Sullivan, 46, said the group’s presence on the Heath could improve its safety by deterring gay cruisers from frequenting the beauty spot at night.

He said: “We could vaporise that problem just being here and let people enjoy their open space again.”

Occupy London spent nearly five months camped on the steps of St Paul’s Cathedral protesting against “corporate greed” before they were evicted by bailiffs in February.

Michael Hammerson, who sits on the Highgate Society’s Heath committee, said: “All this is going to do is damage one of London’s most treasured wildlife sites and it’s not going to achieve anything.

“They are affronting millions of Londoners who value this place and think the City do a good job for Londoners.”

Nature enthusiast Ron Vester, 67, said: “If you get 10, you get 50, then you get 500, then it can becomes a bit of a disaster. You have got to think about sanitary issues and also where are they going to put their garbage?”

A spokesman for the City of London Corporation, which manages the Heath, said: “As the best piece of heavily-used urban green space near to the heart of any global metropolis, Hampstead Heath is no stranger to this issue and the bylaws are very clear - no camping. Full stop.”


If you value what this story gives you, please consider supporting the Ham&High. Click the link in the orange box above for details.

PROMOTED CONTENT

The NHS Test and Trace system provides protection for family, friends, colleagues and the community, and is here to keep all of us safe and allow us to enjoy summer safely. We take a look at how the system is working and talk to one member of the thousands of team members about her experiences.

People are being encouraged to enjoy summer safely by exploring destinations closer to home. Taking a holiday in the United Kingdom offers people the chance to uncover some stunning scenery, wonderful attractions and superb accommodation without having to jump on a plane. Here, we take a look at the type of places you can stay, the rules you need to follow and how to enjoy a great staycation.

A north London catering business has launched a new restaurant style dining experience for people at home.

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Hampstead & Highgate Express
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now

Most Read

Latest from the Hampstead Highgate Express