Billy Bragg on controversial university tuition fees and Hatfield concert

PUBLISHED: 14:34 01 December 2010 | UPDATED: 21:43 01 December 2010

Billy Bragg is playing the Forum

Billy Bragg is playing the Forum

Archant

BILLY Bragg is appearing at the Forum in Hatfield tonight (Wednesday). The singer songwriter talked to the Welwyn Hatfield Times ahead of the concert.

The artwork for Billy Bragg album Mr Love Justice

THE timing of Billy Bragg’s appearance at the Forum could not be better.

Never one to shy away from a hot political topic, the campaigning singer songwriter will be appearing at the University of Hertfordshire on the back of throwing his support behind students who protested at the recent London demo against tuition fee increases.

Although the event was marred by scenes of violence at the Conservative Headquarters, Bragg was quick to write a piece on his official website criticising the Liberal Democrats for its post-election U-turn on tuition fees, saying the anger students felt at the betrayal was “surely justified”.

When I call Bragg for a chat ahead of his appearance at Hatfield tonight (Wednesday), I ask him if he was actually condoning the attacks on Millbank House.

“I’m not condoning people who smash in windows,” he says. “You can’t change the world by doing that.

“But the sheer number of people who went, who were angry enough to do something about it, that’s encouraging.

“If the rest of the public sector can get together, then we might be able to do something about these coming cuts.”

Bragg’s views will almost certainly chime with those who turn out to see him in Hatfield, where he begins his new tour in support of his latest collection of songs from Pressure Drop – a part play/part gig/part installation work by Mick Gordon.

“I’ll be trying out new stuff, and playing some of the old songs as well,” he says.

“It won’t all be politics – I like to strike a balance.”

Fans of A New England and The Milkman of Human Kindness won’t be disappointed, then.

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