Tesco removes one-inch 'anti-homeless' spikes from outside central London Metro store after activists threaten days of protests over measure
A row of one-inch-high studs, which protesters claimed were designed to prevent people sleeping rough, were spotted outside a Tesco Metro
Thursday 12 June 2014
Tesco has agreed to remove the 'anti-homeless spikes' from outside of one of its stores after activists threatened days of protests.
A row of one-inch-high studs, which protesters claimed were designed to prevent people sleeping rough, were spotted outside a Tesco Metro on London's Regent Street just days after a similar strip of spikes were photographed outside a luxury block of flats in Southwark.
The supermarket denied the spikes were an anti-homeless measure and said the studs on a ledge outside the convenience store in central London were installed to deter anti-social behaviour like smoking and drinking - which the firm said intimidated customers.
The images of both sets of studs prompted a furious Twitter row earlier this week with activists claiming that the spikes were an attack on the most vulnerable people in society.
A Homes Not Spikes demonstration has been planned by the group Left Unity.
A row of one-inch-high studs, which protesters claimed were designed to prevent people sleeping rough, were spotted outside a Tesco Metro on London's Regent Street just days after after a similar strip of spikes were photographed outside a luxury block of flats in Southwark (pictured)
Tesco said it would remove them to address the concerns of those who "interpreted them as an anti-homeless measure".
Protesters also unsuccessfully attempted to sabotage the spikes last night by pouring concrete over them.
Left Unity said tonight's event would still go ahead and called for Tesco to remove the spikes from all stores where they are in place.
Spokeswoman Bianca Todd said: "Tesco had tried to distract from the issues here - now they have been forced to back down."
"Thousands of people have made their feelings known online and this should be a message to any other company thinking of using anti-homeless spikes."
"The campaign to remove all the anti-homeless spikes from everywhere they have been put in continues."
"We don't want to live in a society where public space is covered in spikes. Homeless people are not pigeons."
"Instead of leaving people homeless, they should be housed in one of the 700,000 homes currently lying empty in Britain. Homeless people need homes not spikes."
A Tesco spokesman said: "Customers told us they were intimidated by anti-social behaviour outside our Regent Street store and we put studs in place to try and stop it."
"These studs have caused concern for some who have interpreted them as an anti-homeless measure so we have decided to remove them to address this concern."
"We will find a different solution and hope this clears up any confusion."
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