Mr Justice Lindblom handed OccupyLSX protesters an early Christmas present yesterday and the City of London Corporation a lump of coal, when he said he’d (to paraphrase) let the eviction hearing take as long it takes, rather than attempting to rush it through.
And with the courts not sitting again until 11th January, there’s a good chance Occupy will have upped and left of their own accord before bailiffs get anywhere near them. A number of papers reported last week that protesters have made a consensus decision to move on in January in favour of a much reduced camp outside St Paul’s and a “symbolic” tent within the doors. Finsbury Square, Bank of Ideas and Occupy Justice at Old Street aren’t planning on going anywhere for a while though.
Given that the City of London’s objections are, officially, not related to the protest but to the obstruction of the public highway, and given that the camp was always going to be extremely difficult to maintain at its current size in the long-term, it’s worth taking a moment to wonder whether the Corporation has just spunked a bunch of money away on trying to achieve something that would have happened anyway. Or, whether protesters allowed the Corporation to spunk money before deciding to head off. Either way, we thought spunked money was a lovely image to put in your head right before Christmas. You’re welcome.
Occupy have a range of stuff happening over Christmas and New Year across their various sites, including a family friendly Christmas Eve cabaret with Murray Lachlan Young this afternoon; carol singing, parlour games and Yuletide films tomorrow; a Hanukkah celebration on Wednesday; and a version of A Christmas Carol, specially adapted by Timberlake Wertenbaker, on the steps of St Paul’s on the 30th.