Kill the Bill protest to continue in Norwich this weekend

Protesters against crime and policing bill in Norwich.

Protesters against crime and policing bill in Norwich. - Credit: Archant

Campaigners will continue the Kill the Bill protests in Norwich city centre this weekend as they fight against "draconian" legislation.

Protesters from a range of groups including environmental movement Extinction Rebellion have been marching through the city in recent weeks carrying banners such as 'We Won't Be Silenced' and 'Save Our Land'. 

The campaigners are fighting the government’s Police, Crime, Sentencing, and Courts (PCSC) Bill, which would give police more power to impose conditions on non-violent protests.

hitchin windmill hill

A masked protester holds up a placard, as 'Kill the Bill' demonstrators hold a peaceful gathering on Hitchin's Windmill Hill - Credit: Supplied

The first Saturday of May saw around 150 people in attendance as speeches were held outside City Hall before the march through the city.

A spokeswoman for Norfolk Police said officers monitored activity, but no arrests were made and some roads were blocked for a short time.

With another protest being organised for this weekend, campaigners have spoken about the need to keep the Kill the Bill message publicly visible. 

James Harvey of Extinction Rebellion Norwich said: "I prefer the phrase 'freedom to protest'.

"I think it has been going well from our point of view with the numbers and interest but I still think the vast majority are not aware of the huge impact it can have on them.

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"Say for example in the future someone got into power or there was segregation, you would not be able to protest and could be in jail so it really does impact everyone and we will continue to raise awareness of it."

James Graham, of Extinction Rebellion Norwich, added: "This is the kind of thing that can change how civil liberties function in this country so there is a real case to build momentum."

The Norwich branch of the Association of Community Organisations for Reform Now (ACORN) has been involved, as has Green Party councillor for the Thorpe Hamlet ward, Lesley Grahame.

She said: "Protest, judicial review, and voting are all ways to hold governments to account and stop them going rogue.  

"This Police, Crime, Courts and Sentencing  Bill is part of a wider picture of government consolidating its power by making all of these more difficult, without actually taking responsibility for dealing with crises from Covid to climate chaos. We need to bin this bill."