JUST IN CASE YOU LIVE IN THE AREA , SUPPORT THE CRAWLEY YOUTH RALLY at the Crawley Youth Centre, Longmere Road, West Green, Crawley 11am-midday tomorrow, Saturday, December 4

And responding to Mitchell’s slur on their attractiveness, dress sense and character, our Oxfordshire heroes and heroines turned up at the Council Offices on Thursday, December 2 in formal attire! Did the Tory Leader display a sense of irony?

The Oxfordshire young people continue to lead the way, invading the Council offices yesterday and provoking this priceless quote.

Video footage showed protesters entering the Oxford building and walking through corridors before being ejected by police. The Conservative leader of the local authority, Keith Mitchell, said on Twitter: “County Hall invaded by an ugly, badly dressed student rabble. God help us if this is our future.”

Find below the flyer for the December 5 demo.

The Oxford Mail reports,

That twenty libraries and 20 youth centres will close unless local communities can come to their rescue, under Oxfordshire County Council proposals to save £155 million by 2015.

The council has announced plans to stop funding 20 of Oxfordshire’s 43 libraries from next financial year to save £2 million over four years, while cuts to the youth service will save £4.2 million.

Meanwhile seven “hubs” will become the centres of a re-structured youth service to tackle school exclusion, teenage pregnancy, drug use, anti-social behaviour and unemployment.

But the council said funding and staffing at Headington’s Saxon Centre, Cutteslowe, Wolvercote, Wheatley, Bampton, Standlake, Chipping Norton, Carterton, Chalgrove, Wantage, Wallingford, Chiltern Edge, Thame, Burford, Faringdon, Henley, Cholsey, Chinnor and Watlington would have to be found from local communities if they were to remain open.

However young people in the county are not shrugging their shoulders in apathy. The Save Our Youth Centres group is organising a protest outside David Cameron’s office in Witney on Friday, December 1o at 5.00 p.m. They are calling on all comers to support the action. Good on them. My feeling is that we should make every effort to respond to this call.  If support arrives from outside of Oxfordshire, the protest will take on a national dimension that will inspire hopefully wider developments. Certainly, given it is Cameron’s constituency, a big turn-out will attract media coverage.

Let’s follow the young people’s lead and give Cameron a bloody nose  – metaphorically speaking, of course! As you can see from the ‘hubs’ notion, what’s left of youth work is pressed more and more into being a soft-policing, preventative service.

Spread the Word! Send the Group Messages of Support! Build the Protest!


Just found this further example of young people refusing to lie down., which appeared in the Haringey Alliance for Public Services newsletter today.

Save Haringey Youth Centres – Campaign Update


See front page Tottenham Today article on the campaign and update provided from the Campaign group below.

Young people from the popular bounds green youth club was angry when the chief executive of Haringey council seemed unaware when questioned about the closure at a meeting with him on Thursday 18th Nov. the chief executive met over 200 young people to discuss their concerns and the young people only had one subject, saving their youth service. the young people asked over 50 questions making it clear to him that they were angry and they would fight to save their important youth centres.

Save Warwickshire Youth Service

Young people in Warwickshire are on the move, setting up a Facebook and holding an open meeting in the Lillington Youth Centre, Leamington Spa on Saturday afternoon, December 4.

Please send in more news wherever young people are coming to the fore!


  1. I posted the following on the CYPN forum, following a news item on the invading Oxfordshire ‘rabble’!

    It’s heartening to see young people rediscovering and fashioning afresh the politics of direct action. And you can only chuckle at the police’s consternation that there are no leaders to be bought off. Of course in such creative activity sometimes you lead and sometimes you follow, according to the needs of the situation.

    The Oxfordshire example, which relates specifically to cuts in the youth service, needs to be taken up across the country. The Save Youth Centres Facebook is spreading the word. The Haringey group are inspiring. A demo is to be held in Crawley on Saturday.. Whilst the Woodcraft Folk General Council has been exemplary in its support for the student protests in general and the resistance displayed by its own ‘Woodies’.

    Within this turmoil youth workers and supporters with all our talk of youth participation and empowerment need to stand up and be counted. The struggle against fees and cuts, against the abolition of EMA, against the privatisation of youth work, against the marketisation of both formal and informal education is all of a piece. We need to act together now in defence of youth work and public services…and not least the right to think and act critically.

    The Save our Centres group are calling a protest outside David Cameron’s office, High Street, Witney at 5.00 p.m on Friday, December 10, supported by the Oxfordshire Anti-Cuts alliance.

    The Conservative leader of the local authority, Keith Mitchell, said on Twitter: “County Hall invaded by an ugly, badly dressed student rabble. God help us if this is our future.”

    Leaving God out of the picture, this bloke symbolises our future, if we don’t do something about it!

  2. I gather from local youth and community workers today that the protest outside Cameron’s Witney office on Dec 10th is organised through a facebook group set up by a 12yr old young man who wanted to get his mates to support him in protesting peacefully about the closure of the youth club in his area. As a result of the facebook group the protest has been picked up more widely.
    I’m told that police officers visited the young man this week at his school. Apparently they told him that they monitored facebook and knew that he was behind the protest. They warned him that he would be held responsible if there was any trouble at the event and that the protest must not cause any obstruction. They said that he should be aware that if Cameron attended he would have armed guards with him. The young man was apparently (and not surprisingly) very shaken by this experience.
    Cameron is not expected to attend the office for his regular fortnightly surgery this week, but young people from local youth clubs still want to make their point outside his local surgery.
    I’m told that OCC youth and community workers have been told not to work with young people to campaign against the cuts, so there is no youth worker involvement in the organisation of the protest.
    If you are planning to be there, please take this into account.
    As a local resident I intend to be there to support the young people having a voice. It’s outragous that Oxfordshire County Council and the police have behaved like this. The young people involved should be applauded for taking the initiative not isolated and intimidated for wanting to speak up.

  3. Steph

    Thanks for this. I’ve just had a note on Facebook saying the de mo is cancelled, but clearly the young people themselves are not sure what is going on.

    The police intimidation is disgraceful. Trying to find out more, but my instinct is to ask people still to be there on Friday!

    THURSDAY A.M. THE DEMO IS ON. The Oxfordshire Anti-Cuts Alliance are taking the heat off the young people by being responsible to the police!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.