Saturday, 22 October 2011
St Paul's - Forgive us our trespasses
The Portland stone colonnade of the Paternoster Square buildings opposite has been taken over as a poster wall, with the piers and columns covered in imaginative printed and handmade posters - more arty satire than political rant. There's no pasting, everything is carefully taped to the stone, some with printed tapes reading 'Capitalism means War' and 'Another World is Possible'. One of my favourites was just plain stencilled lettering reading 'More to life than money', with the 'O's drawn as bombs.
Organisation is better than it was earlier in the week. A busy kitchen is handing out free meals, and they have lots of boxes of apples. Bins are labelled with instructions for recycling and sorting, and there was a council rubbish collection in progress. Portable toilets, although only two of them, are locked until the public ones close for the night. A fenced-off fire escape route for the cathedral is presumably now redundant but still kept clear. Some bigger tents have appeared but there is still plenty of room to walk through the site. No litter and no vandalism to be seen. This does affect local businesses though - the staff in Paul, the French sandwich chain, say that their takings are down because they usually have tables outside and there isn't enough room now. Policing remains low key: Paternoster Square is fenced off and both police and security guards are making sure no-one gets in, but there are no police lines, just pairs of officers walking around in hi-viz uniform.