Liverpool taken over by student protests after government cuts result in uncapped tuition fees

20/04/2011 15:40


Flickr (Matt_Baldry): Students march after receiving news that there will be a rise in university fees


Huge student protests took control of Liverpool after it was confirmed that tuition fees will be rising.

Students also gathered in nearly every other major city in the UK to make their feelings known. Among them were Manchester, Bristol and London where students joined to rally after learning of public spending cuts and more importantly, news that universities can now charge up to £9,000 a year.

Thousands attended the demonstrations which quickly got ugly. There were 16 arrests made in Manchester after a cluster of students broke away from the main group.

Emily Park, 20, was among the protesters in Manchester city centre. She said: “It is crazy that universities will be able to charge students this much. Although it does not affect me, the debt that future students will be faced with is going to be ridiculous.

“Causing riots though is not going to help the situation. We, like most people came here to take part in a peaceful protest and unfortunately the few who have rebelled will grab the headlines.”

The National Campaign Against Fees and Cuts (NCAFC), organised the nationwide protests that included sit ins, rallies and walkouts of lectures and classes. They estimate that one in ten students up and down the country took part in some way.

It is predicted that 2,000 students were involved in the Liverpool protests which were mainly peaceful. Sit downs were a common theme with students blocking three major streets near Liverpool city centre including Bold Street, Renshaw Street and Berry Street.

Among the protestors was Psychology student James McGuirk, 21. He said: “Overall the day went well. It was calm compared to other protests which looked quite ugly so that was really good. I doubt that the government are going to listen to people who vandalise and cause harm.

“If this means that the government change their minds and decide that students cannot realistically pay that much money then that means that we have helped which is all we can realistically do.”