Letter to the banks as demo continues

Camp protest: Occupy protesters have been asked to move.     Photo: Sarah Washbourn.
Camp protest: Occupy protesters have been asked to move. Photo: Sarah Washbourn.
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THE Dean of Sheffield Cathedral has written to the city’s banks for fear of losing their support for church projects as the Occupy protesters continue to defy his request to go home.

In a letter to local businesses, the Very Revered Peter Bradley assured them the cathedral was doing everything it could to end the protest.

Dean of Sheffield Cathedral the Very Rev Peter Bradley.

Dean of Sheffield Cathedral the Very Rev Peter Bradley.

Rev Bradley said banks had previously funded projects at the church, which runs the Archer Project for the homeless.

The letter said: “We understand many of our partners locally are being inconvenienced by the protest currently taking place on the cathedral forecourt.

“I want to assure you we are doing all we can to bring the protest to a peaceful conclusion.

“The cathedral deeply values its long-term partnerships with many companies, banks and other agencies in the city. I hope you will be reassured to know that on the very first day of the protest I publicly thanked our major commercial partners, including Barclays bank, HSBC and the Cutlers Company.

“Whatever questions the protesters may be drawing to our attention, our experience of these and similar institutions has been of their consistent professionalism and committed support of our work.”

Nigel Slack, from Occupy Sheffield, said the protest – which has been in place since November 5 – was not aimed at the church.

He said: “We are not there in some form sort of protest against the cathedral and we are not there to disturb, wherever possible, the cathedral’s operation.

“We feel the information and the campaign we have started needs a great deal of publicity and it’s a good place for us.”

The Dean has told the campaigners they have ‘made their point’ and asked them to move on, saying they are taking advantage of the church. But so far they have refused to comply with his request.