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Cop vehicles and Tescos smashed in Bristol (Stokescroft) riot last night.

Brizzle Rising | 22.04.2011 09:59 | Free Spaces | Other Press | Social Struggles

Just a brief couple of pieces from the mainstream (ish) press and the police themselves.

Very interesting article on last nights riot in Bristol.

The videos on the above website show both show Tescos being smashed up and police cars being attacked.

As the (informative) comments accompanying this article show this is just a few minutes in over 3 hours of running battles through Stokes croft, St Paul's and Montpelier. As hundreds were involved I suspect that we will build a fuller picture of what happened over time.

And here is a copy of the police statement. Which seems to mention 12 arrests so far.


Police say that actions taken during their robust operation in Bristol city centre overnight were fully justified.

Protestors took to the streets after police carried out an operation to arrest four offenders who represented "a very real threat to the local community" from a property in Cheltenham Road, Stokes Croft.

Officers also seized a number of items following the arrest – including petrol bombs – which are currently being forensically examined.

Acting on intelligence provided during the day, officers rolled out well-rehearsed plans at 9.15pm last night, closing Cheltenham Road before forcing entry into the building.

Three people were arrested on suspicion of public order offences and another person on suspicion of threats to cause criminal damage with intent to endanger life.

Following the operation, which was completed swiftly and effectively, groups of protestors began to gather in Cheltenham Road and surrounding streets in the Stokes Croft area and refused to disperse when asked by police officers.

As minor fires were started and bottles, bricks and other objects were hurled at police, additional officers were bought in to assist their colleagues.

Assistant Chief Constable Rod Hansen said:" Residents have called us to several incidents in the property over the past few days. Yesterday there was a very real threat to the local community from the petrol bombs that were being made and we needed to take positive action.

"The safety of the public is paramount in any situation of this kind and we took the decision to carry out a swift arrest operation, following intelligence received about the criminal intentions of those who were occupying the building,"

"The fact that we seized petrol bombs illustrates the seriousness of this situation and the reason why we took this positive action.

"When 300 people congregated and a small minority from that group started small fires and throwing bottles, stones and other items at officers, we used well-rehearsed plans, which involved the use of officers from neighbouring forces to control what had become a volatile situation," said ACC Hansen.

Minor incidents continued until about 4am when the groups finally dispersed.

During the operation police made eight arrests.

Eight police officers and a number of protestors were injured and required hospital treatment. None of the injuries are believed to be serious.

Around 160 officers were involved in the high-profile operation, which included 66 officers drafted in from neighbouring forces.


Despite their joint operations with South Wales police being well-rehearsed they obviously didn't do spell checker rehearsal A&S constabulary. ( its protestErs not protestOrs)

Brizzle Rising


A bit of background stuff

22.04.2011 11:03

For those of you not from Bristol its worth pointing out that this particular Tescos has beenthe focus of a diverse campaign of resistance by locals, Tescos got planning permission on the sly by pretending to be some one else. When people found out they squatted it from under the noses of the contractors, the space became known as the NoTesco building and large numbers of people came up with alternative plans for the site. A number of vibrant marches and protests have been held against the supermarket invasion of Stokescroft. There was a spirited defence of the building last year during a 8 hour eviction involving scores of police and bailiffs. Since then Tescos have had a permanent heavy security presence on the site. When the store was finally opened last week (18th) a number of people were arrested for obstruction offences and a picket “until they leave” began on sofas outside.

Stokescroft has (or is near too) a number of Bristol's more prominent squats. Telepathic Heights is one. It's very well known for its huge murals and music. A siege of a man on the roof of this building last year lasted for weeks before he was removed and badly beaten by the police. People since re-squatted the building.

And then yesterday the squatters were calling for defence on Bristol Indymedia from 10.30 AM because they thought they would be evicted. (unconfirmed report that they did successfully resist bailiffs at some point during the day)

In the early evening the picket outside Tescos (opposite) was removed and then at 8:40 pm (ish) the police entered the building in force. acting on intelligence (oxymoron?) What happened next..........................................

Brizzle Rising


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  1. police training — Peter Pannier