Jeremy Corbyn today swings behind a mass march to abolish tuition fees as he demands free education “from the cradle to the grave”.
The Labour leader invoked one of the party’s most famous principles – tied to the founding of the NHS – as he issued backing for the student protest in London today, which is being staged with Momentum, and could attract up to 10,000 young people.
Corbyn went into the general election promising to abolish tuition fees in England but came under intense pressure in the weeks after the vote in relation to a pledge to “deal with” historic student debt. Labour insisted this did not amount to a vow to write off the existing stock of debt and stood by its plan to cancel fees for future students.
Today Corbyn sent a message of support to organisers of the demonstration, which has been called by the National Campaign Against Fees and Cuts.
“Everybody should have access to high quality education from the cradle to the grave, without being forced into debt and anxiety,” he said.
“No one should be shut out. That’s why I support the demonstration for free education on the November 15 organised by the National Campaign Against Fees and Cuts and backed by students unions and Momentum. Together we can build a movement to demand high quality education for the many, not the few. And in government, Labour will deliver it.”
Last month Theresa May cancelled the £250 rise in tuition fees, freezing the charges at £9,250, and announced a review of the entire student finance system.
The measure was derided as “desperate” by Labour, which has seen its popularity soar among young people.