Saturday, 27 November 2010

Occupation Day 4

Another brilliant day for Newcastle Occupation. Issues with security are now stable and we have a log book for non-Newcastle students so that they are able to attend events that we are hosting, as long as they don't stay the night.

Northumbria Uni has been contacted to try and drum up some support from staff, the SU and students.

We also had a number of banner drops all around the city, which saw banners at Ricky Road Halls, Northumbria bridge and the Millenium Bridge. Click through for some awesome pics.

Then we facilitated a meeting between local schools, sixth forms and colleges so that we could all plan the Second Day of Action on Tuesday, another peaceful day of protest in Newcastle!

We have also published an email from Newcastle SU President voicing support for the occupation.

During the day we have been speaking to Patrick Kingsley from the Guardian about a telephone interview tomorrow. We are also in the process of arranging some chats over Skype with David Wearing. Manchester Uni and UCL have both given us challenges including making the largest human pyramid and a dance-off.

Mr Scruff will be playing at Digital in Newcastle tomorrow night, so in the spirit of solidarity we have invited him to come over to the Fine Arts building as a Pre Party with plenty of tea and biscuits!!

We finished the night with a small general meeting followed by a workshop on direct action.

Right off to build that human pyramid.


  1. HEPI report on the Browne review-



    It would be good to use this time in occupation to look at the nuances of the government's policy. For example, the findings of this report reveal that the government may either have to lower the repayment threshold, increase the interest rate, or increase the rate of repayment of tuition fees if the "hugely optimistic assumptions" by the Browne report on the level of graduate earnings does not come true. They would have to remove in part the only progressive elements of the new system. That or they would have to leave universities to waste away with insufficient funding.

    "What is the response of the government likely to be when it discovers that far less money is coming back than had been assumed, and that part of the reason for this is that £9000 has become the going rate for the fee? The report suggests that a number of approaches are available that will make the arrangements more expensive for the student (reducing the repayment threshold in real terms, increasing the interest rate, increasing the "tax" from the present 9%). One option that is not discussed in the report is that the government may simply shrug its shoulders and walk away, leaving it to universities themselves to make arrangements for student finance and support with whatever fees they can raise from students."

    It seems like we are seeing the locking of antlers between two ways of thinking. The government's is technocratic and market-oriented and ours is not.

  2. But I'm not there, so I can hardly tell you what to do. I might start my own occupation...