OVER a thousand students marched from University of London Union in Malet Street, central London, to the Business, Innovation and Science Department in Victoria yesterday.
The march was part of the nationwide day of protest called by the National Union of Students against £9,000 tuition fees and cuts in university funding.
News Line spoke to some of the participants before they moved off.
Pierre Marshal, an Oxford Brooks University first year student, said: ‘I am here to protest in solidarity with students in Chile, Canada and Germany who are also fighting for their education.
‘I am in favour of bursaries rather than fee waivers.
‘I am protesting in favour of free education and against government plans to marketise universities.
‘I am against tuition fees. Education should be free for everyone, even for international students.
‘Occupations and protests are things students can do. They can also take action alongside lecturers and other workers.
‘Student occupations give confidence to lecturers and lecturers give students confidence when they go on strike.
‘I want to see the end of this Cameron government.’
Third year Goldsmiths College student Matthew Thacker told News Line: ‘I hate this government and what they are doing.
‘The worst thing about them is that the Tories didn’t win an outright majority in the election and had to go into coalition.
‘It’s clear the electorate didn’t vote for their manifesto and they don’t have a mandate for all their reforms.
‘They are vandalising a lot of the things that I value, like the NHS, universities and free education.
‘They even wanted to sell off the forests. They just don’t care, it’s all about money and profits.
‘The unions should take action, we need a stronger leadership.’
Sybie Ross-Talbot was with a group from Colliers 6th-form College in Horsham. She said: ‘Most people in Horsham are middle class and can afford fees. But a group of us can’t. In any case, I don’t think fees are right. Everyone should have the right to education.
‘People are being denied this by the Tory cuts. The cuts in EMA have been devastating. A lot of people have dropped out of Horsham College over the EMA cut.
‘Again young people are being denied the right to education.
‘The Tories are driving the cuts through and the economy is worse now because of the cuts. The unions should get involved.’
Marcos Schneider, from King’s College London, said: ‘I hate this government, I hate what they are doing. I am worried if we get rid of this government, what comes next, what we can do.
‘Labour is obviously not an alternative. If the health workers stay strong and fight against the pensions change I still don’t know what’s going to come out.
‘The TUC should call a general strike. I want to see a workers’ government.
‘The institutions we’ve got are bankrupt. They offer no future for ordinary people.’