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Protest marches

The question

The last two weekends have seen major marches through London, first with the Countryside Alliance and then the lobby opposing war with Iraq. So we ask: what use do such marches serve? What issues would you feel sufficiently passionate about to march for?

As an ex-Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND) marcher I do believe in the power of demonstrations, but with large majorities governments feel they can ignore such protests. This is clearly reflected by the current government's reaction to the vote on PFI at this week's Labour Party conference. Shame on them: with tactical voting imagine the impact of 400,000 votes being moved around within the present system.

At the moment I would join a march on Portman Road to demonstrate to the Ipswich 'Tractor Boys' how much they owe it to the fans to punch their weight in the Nationwide League and get back into the Premiership, with or without manager George Burley.

Ian Wright, senior engineer, Norfolk We marched for the Countryside Alliance and would have also marched for Iraq so both these have to be worth the effort in my view.

Tony Biddle, 59, civil engineering manager, Ascot I would happily march for the retention of the British pound against the Euro.

John Easdon, 52, partner, Swindon There was a time when marching made a difference. I remember the good old days of standing on bus shelters being hit by mounted police during student loan marches. But now, with the 24 hour news media desperate to fill those dull hours between disasters, it is easier to bring something to the attention of the masses and the government.

Whether the masses are interested or the government bothers to listen is a different matter all together.

Jim Fennell, 34, manager, Belfast I'm not really sure of my answer to what could be described as hypothetical question.

R Herd, 71, retired, Stratfordon-Avon

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