Earlier today I wrote an open letter to Boris Johnson about the scandal of the state of Parliament Square. For several weeks now, this World Heritage Site has been transformed into some sort of hippy camp, masquerading as a 'protest'.
I have learned tonight that the Mayor of London has written to the Speaker of the House of Commons informing him that legal action is to be taken tomorrow against the camp inhabitants. Boris has signed a mayoral directive this evening refusing the 'protesters'' request for retrospective authority to remain on the site. This directive gives GLA officers permission to apply to the High Court tomorrow to commence legal action against the protesters for 'illegal trespass'. If the court finds in favour of the GLA application the GLA will then have the power to seek to remove the 'protesters'.
Boris Johnson is at the same time making clear that while he believes in the right of freedom of expression and the entitlement to demonstrate he also has a duty to safeguard an area which is a World Heritage Site and a top tourist attraction. He has been considering what to do for some time, but when the protesters started digging up the turf and peeing against the statues, the Mayor decided enough was enough.
If the law was clear, I have little doubt that action would have been taken before now. Clearly the Mayor's office hoped that this would be one of those three day wonder encampments and the people concerned would move on. They haven't, so action needs to be taken.
So, all eyes on the High Court over the next few days.