Arts Tower protest ends

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STUDENTS who were staging a sit in at Sheffield University’s Arts Tower have agreed to end their occupation after a week of disruption.

All lectures in the building were cancelled or moved elsewhere while the sit-in continued, causing problems for hundreds of undergraduates. Protesters moved in on the day of the public service workers’ strike to show opposition to Government spending cuts.

University authorities had obtained a possession order which allowed them to end unauthorised occupations. But original plans to obtain a more general injunction against demonstrators were dropped after objections from a range of student groups.

They said the order would have compelled students to seek permission for protests of any kind over the next year.

The university said it would not wish to constrain legitimate debate and protest which did not hamper educational activities. A spokesman said: “The university hopes to get lectures back to normal in the Arts Tower as soon as possible.”