Sunday, 19 October 2014

Police called in to property fair Mipim over #BlockBoris protests

Protesters at Mipim today: Hundreds of demonstrators caused the property conference to be shut down (Source: Facebook/Simerjit Gill)

Police were called in to the first day of property conference Mipim UK, after campaigners sought to disrupt London mayor Boris Johnson's opening address today with their #BlockBoris protests. 
Although the major made it to the podium for his speech at 10am this morning, this afternoon has seen the conference brought to a virtual standstill, with the grills being pulled down on at least some of the entrances.
Reports suggest up to 400 people staged the protest. The cross-group demonstration counts local residents, protest groups and unions among its supporters and is hoping to highlight the rising cost of living in London, which supporters argue has at least in part been inflated by investors and property developers. 
We've been to conferences in West London's Olympia plenty of times, but we've never seen anything quite like this.
Police held back angry protesters chanting “block Boris” and  “homes for people, not profit”, and attempted to keep them from entering the centre. 
Here is what some of the protesters had to say on social media today:

Lockdown at Olympia after protests

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