Spending Review: Sheffield protest targets Nick Clegg

Image caption,
A poster declaring 'Cleggzilla: bringing havoc to a city near you' was paraded in Sheffield

Demonstrators in Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg's home city have dubbed the Liberal Democrat leader Cleggzilla in a protest over spending cuts.

The event featured a poster depicting Mr Clegg as a Godzilla-style figure stamping over the Sheffield skyline.

The protest outside the town hall attracted about 100 people.

A spokesman for the trade union Unison, which staged the event, said the poster highlighted "what the savage cuts will mean for Sheffield and beyond".

However, Paul Scriven, the Liberal Democrat leader of Sheffield City Council, said: "Of course there are going to be some reductions and there are going to be some service changes, but it's not going to be... a disaster.

"It's going to be difficult and we're going to have to work together, but we've planned for this to ensure that things can continue and the reductions and service changes are as minimal as possible and the most vulnerable in the city are looked after.

"People's bins will still be emptied, people will still be able to get around the city and council services will still be provided."

Unison regional convenor Wendy Nichols said: "Nick Clegg and his party actively opposed massive public sector cuts during the election campaign.

"Now they're championing massive cuts and we want to show the hypocrisy of Nick Clegg's embracing of the hard-line Tory agenda."

City councillor Ben Curran, who left the Lib Dems last month to join Labour, said he approved of the Cleggzilla poster.

"I think it highlights the point quite well.

"Nick Clegg's up there, deputy prime minister, and he's trampling on the rest of us.

"Doesn't matter to him if people lose a bit of this benefit or that benefit, because he doesn't need the money."

Meanwhile, about 100 people staged another demonstration outside Barnsley town hall.

Immediately after the chancellor's spending review speech, Barnsley council leader Steve Houghton said: "I think overall it's exactly what we expected - bad news.

"It means job losses, services being cut and no department will be left untouched.

"It will be the end of November or the beginning of December when we get the actual details for each council.

"At that time we'll be able to nail down just what it means."

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