|“Dozens” of people at the 4/20 rally in Hyde Park, from U.K. NORML.|
It seems the British media have no issue portraying this past weekend’s 4/20 rally in London’s Hyde Park as a miserable, wet failure with only “dozens” of attendees when — according to those who were actually there — that couldn’t be farther from the truth.
For more, we’ll turn to the first-hand account of NORML U.K.’s Jake Lenton:
This was my first 420 in Hyde Park. I arrived with my friend just after 11am, where there were probably around a hundred people already gathered (so about six people by the Daily Mail standards). There were a couple of police cars circling the park and soon a sweet smell in the air as people began to mingle and share each other’s different strains.
Around half 11, the NORML UK team arrived with their tables and banners and were promptly approached by a seemingly quite friendly police officer who advised them that they couldn’t set up a stand within the park as it is royal land, but they were free to set up on the pavement by the entrance. And so, without any bother, that’s what they did. Although in previous years it had been no problem to be in the park, being just outside by the gates meant they attracted many more passers-by who hadn’t been aware of what was going on. Home goal for the police!
After midday, crowd numbers rapidly increased, and so did the amount of police. Gradually six vans lined up in Speakers’ Corner, with the addition of mounted police and cars circling the park. Clearly today was not a good day to become a real victim of crime in London, as most of the Metropolitan Police were in Hyde Park to deal with us massively dangerous individuals.
Here’s a snapshot of the U.K. Daily Mail’s coverage: