Campaigners’ “battle-bus” takes to the streets to gain support for national demo

A “battle bus” peopled by campaigners and council and NHS workers toured Tower Hamlets to rally support for a national march on Saturday.

GPs, tenants’ representatives, students and teachers were among the groups who took to streets and markets across the borough, including in Mile End and Bethnal Green.

They were urging people to join the Trades Union Congress march, titled “March for the Alternative”, which could bring over a million people into central London.

Starting at Mile End underground station, the bus headed for Whitechapel market before moving onto Brick Lane and Bethnal Green Road.

Along the way, the campaigners spoke to members of the public and handed out leaflets, with further stops in Roman Road and Chrisp Street.

John McLoughlin, who organised the tour and is branch secretary of Unison, said: “This Con-Dem government is out to smash up the welfare state, scrap final salary pensions and destroy millions of jobs.

“Sadly, the council is pushing through �56m worth of cuts in the coming year that will see hundreds of workers’ jobs go and key services decimated.”

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Amanda Bentham, a member of the East London Teachers’ Association, said: “It was a really successful day.

“People were very positive and we distributed thousands of leaflets.

“Lots of people told us they were already planning to come on the national demo on Saturday.”

The bus will be back on the borough’s roads on Friday stopping off at workplaces and shopping centres and protestors will meet at Altab Ali Park in Whitechapel on Saturday at 10.45 am before going to a meeting point at Victoria Embankment.