Edward Colston

Defend the Colston Four arrested and charged for doing the right thing

It’s time to defend the Colston Four, who have outrageously been charged with criminal damage for doing the right thing by toppling slave trader Colston’s statue in Bristol

The four individuals charged are: Rhian Graham, 29, Milo Ponsford, 25, Jake Skuse, 32, and Sage Willoughby, 21.

They will be up in court on 25 January.

We need to make sure there are loud and vociferous protests when the four appear. As many as 15,000 people were on the protests in Bristol the day the statue found a fitting watery end.

This was an act that should be celebrated and will go down in the history books as a blow for the cause of freedom and equality.

Defend the Colston Four – they are on the right side of history!

Edward Colston’s statue was erected at the end of the nineteenth century, but there was no vote by the people of Bristol over whether that was a good idea – indeed most people in Bristol – by law – didn’t have a vote! We must defend the Colston Four for doing the right thing by pulling it down.

And course the abolitionists movement itself was a working-class affair in this country, albeit led by middle class individuals, may of them associated with the Quakers.

At the head of the movement was the radical Thomas Clarkson who travelled 35,000 miles across Britain building the first national mass social movement in British history.

In expending police resources on hunting down protesters, the authorities are again showing which side of history they are on, and it doesn’t look good.

In July a daring raid installed a new statue, of BLM protester Jen Reid

In July the plinth had a new statue – of protester Jen Reid, but the council in its infinite wisdom removed the beautiful art work by artist Marc Quinn.

Jen Reid stands in front of a sculpture of herself erected in place of Edward Colston on 15 July 2020
Protester Jen Reid stands in front of a sculpture of herself