Edinburgh University was the scene of student protests yesterday. Those involved are demanding that the university reverse its decision to implement £9000 fees for non-Scottish students.
The march was organised by the EUSA and the Edinburgh University Anti-Cuts Coalition, and took place yesterday at 12.30pm. Students marched from Holyrood along the Royal Mile to the Scotland Office on Melville Street, with police closing Lothian Road in order to allow the protestors through.
Around 150 people are believed to have attended. The Anti-Cuts Coalition told Napier News that students were also “coming in on buses from Aberdeen, St Andrews and Glasgow” in order to take part.
Following the demonstration, a number of students took to the George Square Lecture Theatre at around 9pm, and proceeded to occupy part of the building, with reports emerging that there were around 27 people present.
The Anti-Cuts Coalition announced on Twitter that they would be leaving the building before lectures were due to start today, meaning that there would be no need for the University to alter classrooms or timetables.
A number of similar demonstrations and occupations took place all over the UK yesterday. Occupations took place at York, Birmingham, Goldsmiths and Warwick universities.
Several speeches were made at the end of the Edinburgh march, from Robin Parker, the president of NUS Scotland, and Matt McPherson, the president of the EUSA.
Mr Parker said, “Ultimately these fees are the responsibility of the regressive educational policies of the Westminster Government, and the Scottish Liberal Democrat MP’s who went back on their promises have to take ultimate responsibility.”
“Students from the rest of the UK will potentially be paying more than £36,000 for a degree in Scotland from next year. This is more than the maximum allowed in England, if you take the huge numbers from down south who attend Edinburgh and St Andrews into account.”