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Protest called against teacher pay cap

A protest will be taking place in Bristol today. Credit: PA

A protest will be taking place in Bristol today as the National Union of Teachers fight against the 1% cap on pay increases for teachers.

The cap on pay rises, initially of 0% and then 1% after, has been in place since 2010 as part of the Government's austerity measures.

That means teachers' pay has fallen behind inflation, with many choosing to leave the profession as they struggle to cope.


Hundreds of South West students join national protest

Hundreds of students from the West are heading to London today (4 November) to take part in a demonstration calling for free education.

The protesters are angry about the Government scrapping Maintenance Grants, its plans to raise tuition fees and slashing support for disabled students.

Around 10 thousand people attended a similar rally last year:

The student protests in 2014 Credit: ITV News

Under the plans, student grants, available to undergraduates from low income families, will be replaced by loans, in a shake-up of education funding. Critics say it could put the poorest students off attending university.


Hundreds expected to protest budget in Bristol "mass die-in"

Chancellor George Osborne delivered the budget earlier today. Credit: PA

Hundreds of people are expected to protest today's budget in a "mass die-in" in Bristol this evening.

The protest, organised by the Bristol People's Assembly, aims to highlight what the organisers call "the many deaths and huge damage to millions of lives which continues to be caused by austerity and the cuts".

Today's budget included a reduction in the benefit cap for households, an end to housing benefit for 18-21 year-olds, a two-child limit for child tax credits and a freeze in working age benefits for four years.

The Chancellor also announced a new National Living Wage of £7.20 an hour, which will increase to £9 an hour by 2020.

Protestors are planning to move around Bristol, beginning at fountains near the city's Harbourside at 5pm, and ending at College Green.

More than 800 people have signed up to attend so far.

Thousands spent on allotment security

Protester being evicted from Stapleton allotments Credit: ITV News

Round the clock security will remain in place at a site where protesters were evicted last month in Bristol.

Campaigners camped out at Stapleton allotments in opposition to a new MetroBus route. Bristol City Council won a court order to remove them.

It says ongoing site surveillance and the eviction has cost hundreds of thousands of pounds.

Work is underway to reconfigure the allotments, making sure there is no interruption to local food production as a result of work on the MetroBus scheme. No allotments are being lost and improved facilities will be put in place for allotment holders including more parking, more water points and a new allotment building.

Once work on the allotments is complete, construction work for the bus-only junction will get underway. The link, which is part of the North Fringe/Hengrove Park MetroBus route, is expected to reduce journey times between Hengrove and the University of West of England by 27 minutes, linking people in South Bristol with growing job opportunities in the north of the city.

The site will remain under guard, with the situation reviewed regularly. Whilst there is a cost to this, it is far less than the cost of clearing another occupation of the site. The costs of the recent eviction operation and necessary ongoing site security are estimated to be hundreds of thousands of pounds.

– Bristol City Council spokesman
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