Thousands of anti-lockdown protesters marched through central London on Saturday; with the prime minister’s Downing Street residence and parliament both pelted with tennis balls.
England was meant to have lifted all restrictions on June 21; but a rise in cases due to the emergence of the Delta variant, first identified in India, has pushed those plans back by at least four weeks.
The throng marched from Hyde Park, through Oxford Street and towards parliament, carrying flags, whistling and shouting as they demanded an immediate end to restrictions.
“The main reason I’m here is because I feel this lockdown has come at the cost of our liberty and rights;” said Iain McCausland, who had travelled from Devon on England’s southwest coast.
“Our freedom to assemble, our freedom to travel, and work. I’m really quite angry with the government; so are everyone here.”
One placard demanded “arrest Hancock”, in reference to Health Minister Matt Hancock; who hit the headlines on Friday after CCTV footage of him emerged kissing an aide inside a government office.
He apologised for breaking the regulations he helped craft, but has so far resisted calls to resign.