The Right Reverend Graham Knowles, the Dean of St Paul’s Cathedral in London, has announced that the cathedral will shut down. The street area around the cathedral is home to the Occupy London Stock Exchange protest that has been running continuously since last Saturday, October 15.
The statement read by Rev. Knowles describes the issues as follows:
The Health, Safety and Fire officers have pointed out that access to and from the Cathedral is seriously limited. With so many stoves and fires and lots of different types of fuel around, there is a clear fire hazard. Then there is the public health aspect which speaks for itself. The dangers relate not just to Cathedral staff and visitors but are a potential hazard to those encamped themselves.
Despite this, Rev. Knowles acknowledged that the protests were “peaceful” and stated that there was “something profound about protest being made and heard in front of this most holy place: a gathering together of those concerned about poverty and inequality facing the great Dome of this Cathedral Church”.