One of London’s most popular tourist attractions, St Paul’s Cathedral, has been closed because of hundreds of protesters camped out in front of it.
The demonstration is inspired by the Occupy Wall Street movement, and has been steadily growing.
The church authorities say fire and health hazards make it impossible for the cathedral to remain open legally.
“It is really disappointing, I’ve come a long way and unfortunately I can’t take part in the service,” said one visitor.
“The protest is ok. There should be more protests, but we are coming from the continent and we would like to go in,” said another.
What began with a few tents has grown into an unofficial campus. Protesters had elected officers to liaise with the cathedral and say every effort was made to address its concerns.
Support from the church had been a decisive factor from the start of the protest. Organisers have called an emergency assembly to decide what to do.