Occupy London: Organisers Pay Tribute To 'Quarrelsome, Idealistic And Extraordinary Movement'
Occupy London's organisers have paid tribute to the evicted protesters at St Paul's Cathedral who "peacefully resisted to the last".
The camp which began on October 15 last year was finally removed by City of London Corporation bailiffs supported by police officers within a few hours early on Tuesday morning.
The operation was reportedly fairly peaceful, despite a few incidents of scuffling with police and 20 arrests.
Occupy had expected the operation after losing its legal fight to stay last week, and sent a tweet only 90 minutes before the eviction teling its members they should be prepared for the eviction to take place.
Some of the protesters had left as early as last Thursday, and most of the group's valuable equipment and educational materials had already been taken away.
But after the camp was gone there was little for its organisers to do but reflect on what most agree has been a historic protest.
"The last thing to go were the kitchen shelves," Occupy wrote on its website. "Around a dozen occupiers peacefully resisted to the last; a short distance away a vigil continued on the Cathedral steps as others observed, supported, prayed and remembered. The police cordons made the groups seem further apart than they actually were."
True to style the group called a small meeting to discuss the eviction as the eviction was actually taking place.
Then: "At around 2am in the morning, the floodlights which illuminate the neoclassical edifice of that great building were turned off.
"When the lights returned, four policemen could be clearly seen on the balcony, in silhouette."
Occupy also said that former St Paul's Canon Chancellor Giles Fraser, who initially recognised the group's right to assemble, was prevented from reaching the site by police.
"This morning, the City of London Corporation and St Paul’s Cathedral have dismantled a camp and displaced a small community, but they will not derail a movement.
"The attention given to the final hours of the Occupy London Stock Exchange site is testament to that.
"We would like to thank all those who got the word out on social and traditional media overnight. We are deeply appreciative of the sustained attention we have received; it’s all the more precious at absurd hours of the morning."
Addressing the obvious question - what happens next? - Occupy said that it would hold a meeting at 7pm on Tuesday, again at St Paul's, to discuss their strategy.
But after a short time to "recharge" the world should "be assured that plans are already afoot: plans of some ambition, employing a diversity of tactics and delivered with the aplomb you would expect from us.
"All will be revealed in time. May is one of our favourite months."
Finally the group said it would miss the St Paul's camp - "but not because of the tents, or even the kitchen shelves".
"It was a makeshift, loosely cooperative, occasionally quarrelling and fiercely idealistic group of people who came together to achieve something extraordinary," Occupy said.
"The relationships forged during these strange and beautiful four and a half months still have much further to run. This is only the beginning."