£100,000 bill for student protests

POLICING students protests in Sheffield last month cost around £100,000, police have revealed.

Operations were mounted when city students joined a wave of protests across the country at plans to increase university tuition fees to up to 9,000 a year.

Around 3,000 students took part in one march through the city centre and others organised a sit-in at Sheffield University's arts tower, where they remained for more than a week.

Hundreds marched to Hallam Lib Dem MP and Deputy PM Nick Clegg's constituency office in Nether Green to show opposition to tuition fee increases.

The students were also protesting over Mr Clegg's U-turn on the issue after he pledged to fight fee increases during the General Election but then voted for them after the Lib Dems joined the Conservatives in the coalition Government.

A South Yorkshire Police spokeswoman said: "The force has to consider the impact of a protest on the local community to ensure disruption is minimal.

"To achieve this, detailed planning takes place to ensure we're equipped with the appropriate number of officers on duty and required resources.

"We aim to ensure the safety of everyone involved, to protect the rights of those wishing to go about their normal business and not take part in protest."

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