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Heavy-Handed Policing at May Day Kill The Bill Protest

Riot police advance along Wine Street

Saturday’s Kill The Bill protest ended with a show of force from Avon & Somerset Police. 

After the main Kill The Bill protest, Bristol’s thirteenth, had ended on College Green at around 21:30, a small group of around 50 protesters marched back through the centre and to a squatted building on High Street. 

The crowd leaves College Green

Here they stood in the road and outside the squatted building, which is at number 39-40 High Street, while music was played from inside. 

A statement from A&S Police claims that police encouraged people to disperse, however there was no sign of this on the ground. 

At 22:00, around 40 riot police were deployed from six police vans at the junction of High Street and Baldwin Street. Many protesters left the area at this point, leaving around two dozen. 

Riot police were targeted with bottles and other missiles from some protesters. There was no evidence of police being targeted before riot police arrived. 

Riot police arrive on High Street

The police blocked the road from one side to the other and advanced up the road, pushing the remaining protesters back onto Wine Street. 

Supported by six mounted officers, police pressed on and protesters, finding side streets blocked by more police, were shepherded along Wine Street, onto Castlemead and finally towards the Old Market roundabout where they eventually dispersed. By this point there were only around ten protesters left. 

A&S Police reported two arrests. One man on suspicion of assaulting four emergency workers and another on suspicion of failing to comply with a Section 35 direction. 

By 22:30, all protesters had been dispersed. 

Read all of TBA’s Kill The Bill coverage here.

Protesters can be seen sitting in front of the police line.
Police block a side street
Mounted police stand by.
Police outnumber protesters by three to one.
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