Live blogging from UCU picket line at GCU

7.26 am Watch this space….

7.30 Taxi driver James wishes us all the best “it’s really about time somebody talked sense … my daughter’s studying mid-wifery at the Cally and you’ll get her support.” Thanks James.

7.45 “No problem’s insoluble with a big enough plastic bag” (Tom Leonard) So with three black bin bags full of stuff plus half a dozen helpers as we approach the gates to put the tables up, we feel invincible…….

Constructing the 'official' picket line....

7.48 Talking of Vince, our local UCU President, where is he with the coffee…….?

7.49 Vince here but no coffee yet ….”hard times….” he suggests…….

8.00 First students here…. I’m impressed

8.02 First discussion with a Head of department as comes in. They’re not overly impressed with management either…….

Student support for the strike - fantastic!

8.06 Students arrive with banner of support “Students support UCU strike!”. Thanks guys….. Really appreciated.

8.12 GGU IT staff member arrives. Says IT are impressed with our blog and twitter feed. Thanks guys….

8.24 Local polis stop. One says ” we should have the right to join a union” Right on!

Local Polis - first visit

8.30 Poster asking passing cars to ‘Honk in support ‘ is certainly working. But will they hear this in the Brittania building?

Passing motorists made it quite clear they supported us

8.36 UCU President and Vice-President arrive with coffees thus ensuring re-election…..

8.40 First member of management sheepishly passes picket line….

8.50 Great support from students still! Thanks guys!

9.10 “With you in spirit” says a member of EIS as they take a few leaflets into the uni , promising to put them round

Local Police can't believe management strategy either.....

9.25 More local polis. Ask how much support we’re getting. Very good humoured. Was going to ask whether we’re getting helicopter coverage…. But decided not to.

9.30 Another wave of students. Not sure if they’re late for the 9.o clock or early for the 10 o’clock class but they’re still very positive to what we’re doing.

Students were incredibly supportive

9.48 Deborah from UCU office arrives with sound system…… “Dancing in the street……with Martha Reeves”

9.50 Paulo Nutini in support ……in music if not in person (I’m sure he would however).

9.53. “Won’t get fooled again” from the Who….. How appropriate……

10.00 More support from passing taxis….

10.09. BBC here at GCU today with school kids doing a schools live report for UK transmission. Well at least they’re getting a real story! The kids do vox pops with Vince and some of the other reps. They film a bit of the demo helped by some of the media students. This will feature on the programme as ‘news on their doorstep’

Here’s how Vince sounded when interviewed for radio by Lenzie Academy

10.17 Duncan, our fantastic photographer arrives. This will be helpful ……. “Looks good” he says.

10.30 Sinead, 4th year student says she’s here from Events students “to support what you’re doing”.  Much appreciated……..

10.40 Arrival of our secret re-inforcements…….. 150 hand crafted cup cakes with the Principal’s image and the slogan “Take a bite from the Principal’s cake……”. Delicious! In the words of the late Joe Gormley of the NUM “Nothing’s too good for the workers”

Having your cake and eating it too....

10.52. Things feeling good……quite a few students now out supporting …… And eating cakes (understandably)… Support is coming in from sections of staff we haven’t seen before

Solidarity was tremendous


Local students show their support - many thanks!

11.00 Other union colleagues arriving to support us at the impromptu rally at the Uni gates. Superb!

Preparing for the rally

11.10 Rally starting. Vince welcomes us all and outlines what the dispute is about. “Dispute is about job security and pay…. There are more than 100 jobs at risk…..this campaign goes on till the threat of redundancies is lifted”

Vince: "This campaign goes on...."

Deborah: "This management needs to wake up to reality"

11.11 Deborah Shepherd UCU points out the immorality of advertising new £80k jobs in management while redundancies are on table. “Employers are not negotiating in a sensible manner….”

11.15 All present invited to “take a bite out of the principal’s cake” as cup cakes distributed…..

Having your cake and eating it too

'Management's position 'Sticks in the craw...' "

11.16 Nick McKerrel representing the Combined Union Committee tells us that the management’s position “sticks in the craw…..” (unlike the cakes)  “Support the 95 under threat”

11.17 Morag Campbell brings “support of Unison” to the UCU

Solidarity from Unison

11.18 Representative of “Students Against The Cuts” bring support to the rally and says  the “situation for students is dire”  and wishes us well….

11.19 Vince finishes rally thanking those who have come. “we are going to stand together in solidarity and we are going to WIN!

11.30 Reports from inside that many students have stayed away. One report is of 2 in a class of (normally) 25, another of 40 instead of 250. Students are reported to be putting our leaflet up as requested all over the university (see below)

Students pin up our leaflets in solidarity in the Uni itself

12.06 At Adelaide’s  Hall, Bath Street, for a UCU rally in support of struggle – Stirling; Glasgow; the Cally; Strathclyde; and Edinburgh all represented. Looks good.

12.17 Speakers from UCU Strathclyde , Glasgow Caledonian and UWS talk of their experiences this morning – all overwhelmingly positive. Graeme Smith STUC secretary lambasts government policy and the policies of the banks, and pledges support.

John from GCU offers to sell the cake recipe....

Martin, from UWS relates their experience

Speaker from Strathclyde explains their situation

12.23.  Graeme: “This struggle is not just about your rights….. It’s all about issues of access to Higher Education”

STUC pledges support

NUS Womens' Officer talks of common interests

Dave, Glasgow Uni "There are real alternatives management are ignoring"

12.25 Kelly (womans’ officer at NUS) tells us students and lecturers have common interests….. Gets great applause

12.27 Dave Anderson, Glasgow Uni UCU talks about the REAL choices not being taken by management….. “what we care about are our students and their education……”

A standing ovation for the student representative of the Hetherington sit-in

12.37 Student from Glasgow University’s Hetherington sit in gets spontaneous standing ovation. Tells us of the incompetence and brutality of the attempted expulsion by 80 polis, dogs and helicopter of the students during the week. Calls for the resignation of Glasgow management due to incompetence and mismanagement of the university as a whole….

12.45 Peter Murray president of the NUJ brings greetings, and compliments GCU UCU for the cup cakes…. “Solidarity is sweet……”(!)

Pete Murray: "Solidarity is sweet"

A message to management: "We're not going away anytime soon...."

This has been a great success…….so thanks to all!

Check out our Flickr stream later today for lots of high quality photos from today’s events

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