5 November has long been a time for ceremonially burning the effigies of unpopular figures. Yesterday, a group of protestors angered by austerity cuts held a procession through Catford and Lewisham, culminating with the burning of political effigies on the main roundabout.
Coalition politicians such as David Cameron, Nick Clegg and George Osborne made for ready tinder, but Labour figures such as Gordon Brown and Ed Balls were also put to the flame. Nor was Mayor Boris Johnson given any quarter, thanks to his role in cutting back fire stations.
The event was part of a nation-wide day of protest called Bonfires of Austerity organised by the People’s Assembly, with additional worldwide action from Anonymous, wearing their trademark Guy Fawkes masks (though one of their number was not so anonymous). Elsewhere in London, Parliament Square and the space in front of Buckingham Palace saw heated protests, with 15 arrests and fireworks hitting the palace.