Move G7 protest site, says local MP

The Police’s decision to marshal G7 protestors on Plymouth Hoe has been described as a “disaster waiting to happen” by local MP, Luke Pollard

The historic Hoe with its parade of historic statues and war memorials, views of Plymouth Sound, and close proximity to the Barbican and the city centre has been identified by the Police as their preferred location for protests against the G7 summit. Protestors from across the country and further afield are expected to make the journey to the South West as world leaders meet in Carbis Bay in Cornwall.

Travelling Protestors will be encouraged to protest in South West locations to prevent St Ives and Cornwall being overwhelmed.

Luke Pollard MP has written to the Chief Constable and Police and Crime Commissioner for Devon and Cornwall, to ask for them to outline the rationale for locating the protest on the Hoe and to consider moving it to Central Park.

Labour and Co-operative MP for Plymouth Sutton and Devonport Luke Pollard said:

“The Hoe is the wrong location for a large protest. It is in our historic heart of our city, with limited ways in and out and would require protestors to travel through our city centre and Barbican. It is a disaster waiting to happen.

“I want the police to consider moving the protest to Central Park which has more space and is a location that is familiar to the Police because of policing Argyle games at Home Park. 

“I support the right to peaceful protest, which is essential for any democracy. I share the concerns of environmental campaigners – we are in a Climate and Ecological Emergency. Action to cut carbon and preserve wildlife habitats has so far been too little too late. We need meaningful structural change from our world leaders.

“I am very worried that if protests at former G7 summits are anything to go by, the Hoe could be trashed and people could get hurt. The safety and wellbeing of local people, the police, legitimate  protestors and everyone in Plymouth has to be the top priority. That is why I want the protest location moved away from the Hoe.”