Protest lost our sympathy

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THE Dean of Sheffield is magnanimous in his view after the Occupy Sheffield protesters packed up their camp and moved on from the cathedral forecourt, saying that now the organisation can focus on its aims rather than argue over location, while the church can get on with its ministry work.

We hope the protesters listen, for they earned themselves few friends and, frankly, have got off lightly considering the amount of harm they caused to the cathedral, which reckoned it had notched up a sizeable legal bill during the court exchanges between the two.

That is money that could have been used for better causes than persuading a protest group to accept that they had no right to be where they were.

Some of the group’s claims struck a sympathetic chord, but the argument became one of the right to protest and this diversionary tactic sapped much support.

Long memory of law wants windfall

REDLEY Farrier was given the benefit of the doubt when he appeared before a court for growing cannabis and it was claimed he profited to the tune of more than £32,000 from his crimes.

He bargained with the court and succeeded in reducing the amount to £22,058, a sum he was told to pay to the nation under a proceeds of crime case. With just £335 in his pocket at the time of his arrest, Farrier probably thought he was on safe ground that he would not be in a position to meet his obligations.

Of course he did not expect he would come up trumps on the lottery, with a win which hands him £10,000 on his birthday for the next 10 years.

However, the authorities caught wind of this, froze his bank account and went back to court for their share of the windfall. Now Farrier has changed his mind and reckons the sum is excessive. Pity he didn’t think of that when he agreed it was an accurate sum earlier.

This is a warning: the long arm of the law is matched by its long memory.

Support Johnny

FORMER world champ Johnny Nelson has come up with a knockout idea which we hope will get the support it deserves. He is launching a charity to help young people get into sport by providing them with the equipment which otherwise may be beyond their reach. Sport not only offers rich rewards for those at the top of their game, it also teaches people of all ages valuable lessons in how to make the most of opportunities that are available to them. We hope that anyone with influence who can help this charity get off the ground takes the initiative and supports Johnny and his team.