Protests Expected At Sheffield Lib Dem Conference
11 March 2011, 10:51
Up to 10,000 protestors are expected in Sheffield over the next 3 days while the Liberal Democrats hold their party conference.
A huge steel fence has been put up outside City Hall to protect the 3,000 delegates and extra police have been drafted in from around Yorkshire to keep demonstration peaceful.
South Yorkshire police say they are expecting between five and ten thousand protestors over the next three days with one March on Saturday finishing up on Barker's Pool.
In all policing of the event will cost taxpayers £2 million.
Last night Lib Dem leader and Sheffield Hallam MP Nick Clegg has told his party to "hold your nerve" and insisted he believes he was right to take the Lib Dems into coalition with Conservatives and right in the agenda the Government has followed.
The Conference opens today against the humiliating backdrop of sixth place in last week's Barnsley Central by-election, with many rank-and-file members unhappy about Mr Clegg's U-turns on issues like university tuition fees and the pace of spending cuts.
The latest YouGov survey for The Sun has put the Lib Dems on just 9%, trailing well behind their Conservative coalition partners on 34% and Labour on 45%.
Labour's 11-point lead is the largest the company has recorded since the election.