On Thursday the 18th of May the Conservative party launched their manifesto outlining the way in which they are to govern the United Kingdom, if they are to be re-elected on June 8th. The unlikely location for their launch was Dean Clough Mills, which is in the working class northern town of Halifax, currently represented by Labour MP; Holly Lynch.
Reports of the manifesto launch began to surface on Wednesday evening, starting off as mere rumours. By 10 o’clock an independent Facebook group confirmed the rumours through an anonymous source, the Daily Bulletin sent reporter; Tom Denham to Halifax to cover the event.
Upon arrival it was clear that Mrs May’s appearance was going to be a routine operation of arriving to the site with as little public exposure as possible. Many small roads around the mills, which are usually open, had been closed in order to contain the public. At about 10:30 am the protestors arrived, wielding placards, banners and microphones with chants of “No ifs, no buts, no education cuts!” echoing around the mill walls. As expected the crowd was kettled and directed by the police force preventing them from getting too close to where the Prime Minister was set to be.
The protestors made up of all age groups peacefully lined the road which ran up to the mill entrance. There was a real sense of unity amongst them as they were united behind a principle of making the Tories feel unwelcome in their working class hometown. Amongst the crowds were people dressed as foxes and even one lady dressed as a Dalek who claimed “she’s going to exterminate us!” The police were encouraged by protestors to consider standing down as they also face cuts under a Tory government
After roughly 1 hour of walking around the site, noticing all the main journalists of the UK’s dominant media outlets, the police presence became more intense, Theresa May’s arrival was imminent. With the protesting crowds blocked off from entry into the mill and members of the public moved out of the roads and onto the pavements the path was clear for entry. As the convoy of expensive Jaguars, Land rovers and Range Rovers pulled up outside the venue, crowds began to stir and Mrs May appeared for a couple of seconds maximum before being rushed inside a mill building. That was the extent to her public appearance.
As May was inside the building delivering her speech, news of manifesto announcements began to trickle out. The crowds reacted in a predictable unwelcoming manor and the chants got ever louder and ever longer. As the event came to an end the Tory leader was rushed back into her Strong and Stable bus and left the mill, onto the next (not so) public appearance.