'Notice to leave' expected in 48 hoursTagged as: cuts occupylondon occupylsx repression
At St Pauls Occupation: A 'notice to leave' letter is expected today, meaning that court proceedings could start within the next 48hours (via the Corporation of London), although the expected announcement at 12pm did not happen as the Corporation of London are continuing to meet. They will have to physically hand over a legal notice to the camp at some stage. At the same time St Paul's Catherdral has released a statement (see below) claiming it has no part in the formal legal notice and that they withdrew their legal action.
For the Finsbury Square occupation: Yesterday (31st Oct) OccupyLFS were told by Islington council that they are trespassing (on finsbury square which is council owned). The council said they intend to serve a letter stating this and giving 24-48 hrs to leave (NB they don't have to at that point). Then they could be served notice to appear in court in maybe a couple of weeks.
Statement from St Paul's today:
"The Chapter of St Paul's Cathedral has unanimously agreed to suspend its current legal action against the protest camp outside the church, following meetings with Dr Richard Chartres, the Bishop of London, late last night and early this morning.
The resignation of the Dean, the Rt Rev Graeme Knowles, has given the opportunity to reassess the situation, involving fresh input from the bishop. Members of Chapter this morning have met with representatives from the protest camp to demonstrate that St Paul's intends to engage directly and constructively with both the protesters and the moral and ethical issues they wish to address, without the threat of forcible eviction hanging over both the camp and the church.
It is being widely reported that the Corporation of London plans to ask protesters to leave imminently. The Chapter of course recognises the Corporation's right to take such action on Corporation land.
The bishop has invited investment banker Ken Costa formerly chair of UBS Europe and chairman of Lazard International, to spearhead an initiative reconnecting the financial with the ethical. Mr Costa will be supported by a number of City, Church and public figures, including Giles Fraser, who although no longer a member of Chapter, will help ensure that the diverse voices of the protest are involved in this.
The Bishop of London, Dr Richard Chartres, said: "The alarm bells are ringing all over the world. St Paul's has now heard that call. Today's decision means that the doors are most emphatically open to engage with matters concerning not only those encamped around the cathedral but millions of others in this country and around the globe. I am delighted that Ken Costa has agreed to spearhead this new initiative which has the opportunity to make a profound difference."
The Rt Rev Michael Colclough, Canon Pastor of St Paul's Cathedral and a member of Chapter, added: "This has been an enormously difficult time for the Cathedral but the Chapter is unanimous in its desire to engage constructively with the protest and the serious issues that have been raised, without the threat of legal action hanging over us. Legal concerns have been at the forefront in recent weeks but now is the time for the moral, the spiritual and the theological to come to the fore."