Eastleigh Blogger in St Pauls protest camp

matthew myatt ocuppied times

Matthew Myatt with a copy of 'Ocuppied Times' he helped to produce

A blogger from Eastleigh is currently in the thick of the controversial ‘Occupy London’ protest at St Pauls Cathedral.

Matthew Myatt – a professional photo- journalist who contributes regularly to Eastleigh News went to report on the protest and ended up  working there as the official photographer for Occupied Times – a weekly newspaper printed and distributed by the protestors on site.

Matthew is a seasoned local campaigner and is clearly relishing his new role at the forefront of a national campaign calling for a reform of  the financial system in the interests of social and economic justice.

Although he currently spends most of his week camping in the square while working for the paper and keeping a  photo diary of the protest, he popped back to Eastleigh over the weekend to stock up on fresh socks and had time to answer some questions for Eastleigh News:

Why are you at the Camp?

The reason I decided to go to the camp is that I attended the main rally that took place on 15 October to give my support to the campaign to bring about a change in the way that the one per cent of people feed off  99% of the population. I hate greed and I hate the fact that these people and the government are borrowing huge amounts of money to keep the system running and are relying on my children to pay these debts in the future through taxation and cuts.

What are the goals of the camp?

That’s a good question and one that is asked by many people who come to visit the camp. I cannot speak for everyone but for me I am here to ask one simple question. Is there a better way than the system we have right now. I do not have the answers and I am not trying to force my views on others, I just want to ask the question and engage others in the debate. It is my hope that by raising the question others will stop and think and perhaps a consensus of change will come about.

Matthew's new home in the shadow of St Pauls

Matthew's new home in the shadow of St Pauls

Some critics say the camp is full of middle class part timers – others say it’s full of students and the work shy – what’s the truth?

The camp is a cross-section of society; there are people from all walks of life living at St. Paul’s court yard. This is important because it is only through a consensus of all of the 99% that real change will be brought about.

Is this just a left wing protest?

No. The camp has people of all political beliefs. From Greens to Tories, all sharing a common understanding that the system as it is cannot continue if society as a whole is to benefit.

How can people who can’t make it to the protest help?

Protest comes in many forms. It’s not just about holding a sign and shouting in Parliament Square. The best way people can help is to look beyond the newspaper headlines. Do a little research for themselves and see what is going on around them, to their friends and family, in their community and to a society as a whole. I have great faith in people and that at heart people want what is fair and just. Asking difficult questions of the people who want power is a great way to start the change. The next time someone comes to your door asking you to vote for them, ask them what they will give back to ensure our society and our community will benefit from the policies and decisions they will make once they have your vote.

How long are you prepared to stick it out?

Change takes a long time. Some of the biggest changes to come about have taken years, even decades. No one is under the false belief that things will change tomorrow or next week, but change has already started by the fact that people are prepared to sleep on the streets to voice their anger at the injustice of greed. How long will it take? Who knows, but unless we take that first step nothing will change. I am in it to win it, so my answer I guess would be that I am prepared for a very long slog for the sake of my children and my children’s children.

CND veteran Bruce Kent addresses the camp

CND veteran Bruce Kent addresses the camp

Occupied Times website

Occupy LSX

Matthews Blog

  10 comments for “Eastleigh Blogger in St Pauls protest camp

  1. mm
    Eastleigh Xpress
    November 8, 2011 at 4:12 pm

    Well done Matthew – standing up for what you believe in.

  2. November 8, 2011 at 7:31 pm

    Thank you Steve for hilighting the Occupy London movement. I am sure there are many in Eastleigh who have seen the national news of the camp and have wondered what it is all about. I would ask anyone who has an interest in what is trying to be achived to visit the Occupy LSX link in your copy.

  3. November 8, 2011 at 8:51 pm

    Well done on the Occupy London protest. Its good to see people getting involved and showing thier feelings.

    However, I like many others think that the point has been made. The daily business of St Pauls is clearly being disrupted. People are not being allowed in to viist as tourists or to join in daily prayer. If St Pauls was a
    mosque, I can imagine a different scenario.

    The fact that there are reports of tents being empty during the week looses the protesters credibilty. I would suggest that the protest should move on to somewhere else in an effort to sustain momentum. At this time, you are where the authorities want you. In one place.

    • November 10, 2011 at 12:11 am

      John, Never let the truth get in the way of a good story. Stop reading the press. St. Pauls reopened to the public 6 days after closing its door. Both the public and tourists have full access to the building and weddings are even taking place without any interference from OccupyLSX.

  4. November 8, 2011 at 11:24 pm

    Thanks Matthew and to everybody involved in the Occupy protest. These issues have been ignored for too long and I’m pleased they are being raised in this way.

    • November 10, 2011 at 12:05 am

      Thats really kind of you to say so. I wish people in Eastleigh would wake up and start seeing things more clearly.

  5. Jenny Schwausch
    November 9, 2011 at 8:43 am

    Well done Matthew but don’t forget that Eastleigh needs you too!

    • November 10, 2011 at 12:06 am

      Thank you Jenny, I will return.

  6. November 9, 2011 at 8:51 am

    What the Occupy protesters have achieved is to get publicity on the mainstream media without setting fire to anything and without smashing anything. Their process of decision making by general assembly where everybody can have a say and the community as a whole agrees how to proceed contrasts with the Corporation of London which is an unreformed and undemocratic rotten borough.

    • November 10, 2011 at 12:08 am

      Thank you Keith for your support. Very welcome. I did post your email on the message fence for all to see.

Comments are closed.