Marchers protest against cut-backs

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PROTESTERS who took part in a march through the centre of Northampton to demonstrate their anger at the public sector cuts have vowed to do everything they can to “make their voices heard”.

The march, which started at Becket’s Park and then went up Cheyne Walk and along York Road and Abington Street, was organised by an alliance of 40 different trade union and campaign groups on Saturday.

The group of more than 100 protesters filled the piazza outside All Saints’ Church for a rally which was addressed by a number of speakers including; Roger McKenzie, assistant general secretary of Unison; Cheryl Pidgeon, TUC Midlands regional secretary and David Ward, deputy general secretary of the Communications Workers Union.

Matt Wrack, general secretary of the Fire Brigades Union, Anjona Roy of the Hope Not Hate Campaign and a representative from the Education Activist Network also spoke to the crowd.

Ron Mendel, president of Northampton Alliance to Defend Services, said he was pleased with the turnout which reflected the “broad range of people” against the removal of funding from public sector services.

He said: “We have got to hit the streets and mobilise. We hope our message is being heard.

“We’ve got two Conservative MPs in the town and a Conservative-dominated county council so I hope the message is getting across to them.

“I would urge everyone to write to their MPs, sign petitions and do as much as they can to make their voices heard.”

Bea Price, a member of Northamptonshire People Against the Cuts, said: “This is the first big march we’ve had but we will continue to fight until the argument is won and the cuts are stopped.”

Graham Croucher, secretary of St James Resident’s Association, who attended the march, said it was “crucial” that people registered their opposition to the cutbacks.

He said: “This march keeps up the pressure on the Government and local authority and keeps up the public awareness. People need to know that the cuts are not over yet.”