It gathered outside Brixton police station, about 30-40 people, many very young, but not only. It was headed by a group with a mobile sound system playing very loud anti-police hip hop, rap etc. music and carrying a couple of banners.
First, some vociferous slogans against the police outside the police station, then off through the market area before moving into Brixton Road up to the notorious prison in Jebb Avenue. In spite of its size, the demo, some people walking, some with wheels, took over the main road (A23), and was immediately surrounded by police. As well as the cops that moved with the demo, many more could be seen all the way along the route to the prison, both standing in the side streets and parked in vans.
Passersby looked curiously on at this noisy, clearly anti-police march at a time when we are all supposed to be subdued and living in fear of a knock on the door. This had already occurred concerning those for whom the demo had been called in solidarity.
What the march lacked in numbers was compensated for with the passionate anger of the participants who had come from various parts of London and beyond, in answer to this urgent callout in solidarity with those being held in Brixton prison following the recent uprising, against the heavy sentences being meted out on absurd charges, and against the very existence of prison itself.
This became really clear when everybody stormed through the barrier blocking the pedestrian road on the edge of that disgusting gloomy Victorian edifice. By this time passions were running high, everybody screaming slogans in unison to the prisoners: FREEDOM NOW! FREEDOM NOW!; THE PASSION FOR FREEDOM IS STRONGER THAN THE PRISON (also in Greek); COPS, PIGS, MURDERERS; NO JUSTICE NO PEACE, FUCK THE POLICE, music full volume,wild war cries, sustained very loud banging on the corrugated prison fence with bike locks, etc. One of a group with a Free Mumia banner made a strong militant speech through a loudhailer.
The greatest emotion exploded when the clenched fists of some of the prisoners emerged from some of the ‘windows’, and cries of FREEDOM NOW! OUT NOW! broke out from the depths of that rotten dungeon. The passion was so strong and everything continued, shouting backwards and forwards, for about 20 minutes, half an hour.
The cops, a few dozen of them, didn’t seem to know what to do. More vans arrived, including two dog vans which made some of the demonstrators decide to stay behind, not knowing whether something had kicked off inside, and not wanting to abandon the prisoners. Later, after the vanloads of cops drove away, everybody left, explaining why they had come to curious (some quite sympathetic) neighbours in the street behind the prison as they went.
A few days later news arrived from inside through the grapevine that the prisoners were very very happy about the demo, it gave them strength and courage to carry on.
Solidarity with the uprising!
Everybody to the streets!
Fire to the prisons!
random london anarchists