Brighton demo ends in violence

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The Independent Online
Eighty people were arrested yesterday as hundreds of police in riot gear and using dogs clashed with anti-road protesters on Brighton seafront, writes Clare Garner.

Police foiled an attempt by the radical anti-roads pressure group Reclaim the Streets to hold a street party in the middle of the East Sussex seaside town, seizing sound equipment, a van full of scaffolding poles, and an uninflated bouncy castle.

In scenes reminiscent of the Sixties mods and rockers battles in the resort, holidaymakers ran for cover to avoid being caught in the crossfire of cans and bottles being hurled at the police. The Sea Front and West Street were blocked for part the afternoon.

The organisers of the Reclaim the Streets event had hoped thousands would descend on the town to enjoy a mini carnival but only 400 to 500 protesters attended. Their aim, they said, had been to move the beach onto the roads of the town.