Protesters march through London against Tier 2 restrictions

17 October 2020, 19:37 | Updated: 17 October 2020, 19:42

Protesters march through London against Tier 2 restrictions
Protesters march through London against Tier 2 restrictions. Picture: PA

Anti-lockdown campaigners have taken to the streets of London to protest against restrictions which have been brought in to curb the spread of coronavirus.

The capital entered into Tier 2 restrictions at midnight, meaning Londoners are now banned from meeting people from outside their household indoors, and a maximum of six outdoors.

Led by former Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn's brother Piers, demonstrators chanted "stick your poison vaccine up your arse", "take off your masks" and "we are the 99%" as they walked down Oxford Street.

Some carried placards blaming the virus on the new 5G network, while others claimed the virus itself was a hoax.

Demonstrators took a detour to Rathbone Square to stand outside Facebook'sLondon headquarters, although nobody was able to say if they were for or against the social media giant, which many have blamed for spreading pandemic misinformation.

The protest later came to a halt in Leicester Square outside the Imax theatre, although it was unclear why as they had originally stated they were heading for Downing Street.

Jeremy Corbyn's brother Piers was leading the march
Jeremy Corbyn's brother Piers was leading the march. Picture: PA
Protesters clash with police
Protesters clash with police. Picture: PA

Many of those gathered carried signs reading "my body, my choice", a slogan borrowed from the pro-choice movement.

One of the organisers told a breakaway group outside Downing Street: "Man flu has closed our country and crushed our economy."

Piers Corbyn, who has previously been fined the maximum £10,000 for his anti-lockdown protests, also took part in a demonstration in Soho on Friday night.

"We're here to drink against the curfew," he said.

"To oppose the lockdowns, to oppose job losses caused by lockdowns, to oppose all of of it.

"The whole lot should be lifted now."

London went into Tier 2 of the restrictions today
London went into Tier 2 of the restrictions today. Picture: PA

Londoners hit the streets last night to enjoy their last night drinking with friends before the restrictions came in.

One person was arrested for being drunk and disorderly, while one other person was issued a dispersal order and directed away from the area.

Some pub-goers remained on the streets, along with police officers, after the 10pm curfew kicked in.

Read more: Police to step up action as London goes into 'tier two' at midnight

Read more: More than half of England living with heightened coronavirus restrictions

Just minutes before, bars were packed with people enjoying their final night of mixing indoors with people from outside their households or 'bubbles'.

Earlier in the day, police officers made a number of arrests following a disturbance involving a small group of anti-lockdown protestors who tried to take over the middle of the square.

However, most people appeared happy to return home once the curfew forced pubs and bars to close.