When I was in London I literally stumbled upon the Resist and Act for Freedom Rally in Trafalgar Square on Saturday 19th September 2020. This photo reportage documents the protest.
I was accidentally in the right place at the right time! Here’s a short video clip from my iPhone to give you an idea:
My Role as a Reportage and Documentary Photographer
My role as a professional photographer is to document what I saw at this rally and protest through my photos and this blog article. No more, no less. I will never push an angle or take sides through my work. I pride myself in remaining neutral at all times. That said, as an events and documentary photographer, this was a gift!
Conspiracy Theorists Rally
Upon arriving at the rally it was clear from the banners on display that this was a protest by all manner of conspiracy theorists.
So much so that it was difficult to work out what group had organised it. A quick search on Google led me to this breaking news article by the Evening Standard.
The article confirmed that the Resist and Act for Freedom Rally (as I later found out it was called) had been organised by Kate Shemirani.
Shemirani has been suspended as a Nurse for her conspiracy theory beliefs. She believes that Covid-19 is a hoax and is also anti-5G and anti-mask. Shemirani has also become the face of the “Anti-Vaxxers” movement in the UK. Hence the varied turnout of protestors.
Judging by the banners on display the protesters largely comprised of the following groups:
- Anti Vaxxers
- Those believing Covid-19 is a hoax
- Anti 5G
- New World Order
- Anti Face Masks
- Anti MSN (Mainstream Media)
- QAnon – Those believing there’s a worldwide child trafficking ring
- Anti Bill Gates
Largely peaceful Protest but some trouble
It was a largely peaceful protest but there was some trouble and hairy moments too. I spoke to some of the protestors and listened to their firmly held beliefs. They were not there to cause trouble.
But there were also some troublemakers and some provocative taunting of the Police coming from the stage. Almost inevitably this whipped some of the crowd into a frenzy which resulted in an isolated skirmish and some clashes with the Police. I left shortly afterwards.
I later read that the Police eventually closed down the rally over public safety concerns and there had been 32 arrests.
Here’s a video clip from my iPhone showing the trouble kicking off:
London Photography Trip
This rally was held on the last day of my 3 day London photography trip. I was there to continue the Streets of London street photography project that I started back in March which was curtailed by the subsequent Coronavirus lockdown. I also started work on a new social documentary project. So, watch this space, as there’s more London photography posts to follow soon.
Click on the photos to view full size:
You can learn more about my work as a professional photographer in London here and my documentary and events photography here. Alternatively, you might be interested in my units stills photography in London here.
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