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Video: St Paul's protest

A group of Occupy protesters have chained themselves to the pulpit of St Paul's Cathedral.

The four women, including one in a wheelchair, padlocked themselves to the pulpit during this afternoon's evensong service.

Outside more protesters, from Christianity Uncut, unfurled banners urging St Pauls to join their campaign against inequality.Louise Hulland sent this report.

Occupy London statement

Occupy London has released the following statement on their St Paul's protest:

"On the eve of the anniversary of the beginninng of the Occupy London Stock Exchange camp by St Paul's Cathedral, supporters of Occupy London, in collaboration with Christianity Uncut, today staged a dramatic intervention to highlight their call for the leadership of St Paul'sCathedral to stop sitting on the fence and join the fight against rising inequality in the UK and beyond.

"While Christianity Uncut unfurled a 5m x 10m banner outside the Cathedral urging the leadership of St Paul's to "Throw out the money changers from the temple", four Occupy activists staged a mic check during Evensong. They are now locked on to the Cathedral pulpit not planning to leave."


Hairdressing greats pay tribute to Sassoon

Some of the country's most famous hairdressers have spoken of how Vidal Sassoon influenced their own careers.

As they arrived for a memorial service at St Paul's Cathedral today, John Frieda and Nicky Clarke paid tribute to him as a unique individual.

"He was a revolutionary. There is no doubt about it, the people that are around today, including myself, certainly owe a huge debt to him."

– Hairdresser Nicky Clarke

"I don't think there is anyone in our industry that has achieved what he achieved. He was a man that completely revolutionised the industry in a way no one else ever has."

– Hairdresser John Frieda

Vidal Sassoon was a London-born hairdressing pioner, who invented the "bob" hairstyle which epitomised the Swinging Sixties. Some of his most famous clients were designer Mary Quant, the model Jean Shrimpton and film star Terence Stamp.

He also turned his craft into a multi-million pound industry, creating a network of academies and lending his name to various hair products.

He died at his home in Los Angeles in May, aged 84, after a battle with leukaemia

Celebrities attend Vidal Sassoon memorial

A host of celebrities turned out today to pay tribute to hairdressing icon Vidal Sassoon at a special memorial service at St Paul's Cathedral.

Among those who attended were actor Sir Michael Caine, designer Zandra Rhodes, singer Toyah Wilcox and hairdressers John Frieda and Nicky Clarke.

Hairdresser Nicky Clarke arrives at St Paul's Cathedral. Credit: Gareth Fuller, PA
Actor Sir Michael Caine outside the cathedral. Credit: Gareth Fuller, PA
Designer Zandra Rhodes also attended. Credit: Gareth Fuller, PA


Clear skies help protect St Paul's

Clearer skies are helping to protect the cathedral from chemical erosion. Credit: Stephen Pond, PA.

The risk of chemical erosion to the stone facade of St Paul's Cathedral is at a 300-year low.

A recent study has found that the levels of sulphur dioxide - found in acid rain - have fallen by 95% over 30 years.

The drop is largely down to a decline in industry in central London and a move towards cleaner energy production, according to the report by the universities of Portsmouth, Oxford, Sussex and Cambridge.

Ex St Paul's cleric finds new role

The former canon chancellor of St Paul's Cathedral has found a new position within the Church of England five months after resigning over the handling of an anti-capitalist protest outside the church.

Dr Giles Fraser will be parish priest of inner city St Mary, Newington, in south London, he announced on Twitter. He added that he would be writing about his new post and charting inner city life regularly in The Guardian newspaper.

23 arrests made during "largely peaceful" evictions

City of London police, who were supported by the Met, said 23 arrests were made during the "largely peaceful" eviction as bailiffs from City of London Corporation removed tents and equipment from outside St Paul's last night.

The action was taken five days after Occupy London was refused permission by the Court of Appeal to challenge orders evicting protesters.

Stuart Fraser, policy chairman of the City of London Corporation, said: "It is regrettable that it had to come to the need for removal but the High Court judgment speaks for itself. The site has now been cleared and the area is undergoing a deep clean."

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