Police statement following protests in central London.

Throughout the afternoon and evening of Monday, 15 March a large number of protesters gathered in central London, specifically in the areas of Parliament Square, Trafalgar Square and parts of the West End.

The Met maintained an appropriate policing plan during the protest based around the ‘4 Es’ approach with officers initially engaging with those in attendance.

Throughout the evening, the protesters began to block a number roads including Victoria Embankment and Westminster Bridge causing traffic disruption.

The protesters were encouraged to leave the area and many chose to do so; however, a number remained in Westminster.

Temporary Deputy Assistant Commissioner Jane Connors, said: “Whilst I understand why people feel the need to express their views at this time, we must remember that we are still in the middle of a pandemic, and that there is the constant risk of transmitting the Coronavirus.

“Our officers we once again out on the streets, with primary role of trying to ensure people’s safety during this health crisis.

“Despite many people adhering to officers’ instructions to leave the area and go home, we had to take some enforcement action as the evening progressed.

“Three people were arrested on suspicion of breaching the Health Protection Regulations. Two remain in custody and the third was released after being issued with a fixed penalty notice. 

“A fourth person was arrested on suspicion of assaulting an emergency worker and remains in custody.

“In addition to the arrests, two people were issued with fixed penalty notices.

“We will continue to review how we police events such as this and I would urge people to think carefully before joining any future protests.”

The Havering Daily