Traders’ fears heard as court hearing slated for December

TRADERS in Paternoster Square have seen customer numbers slump by up to 90 per cent, according to City of London papers published yesterday.

Businesses in the part of the square that has been cordoned off are experiencing the heaviest losses, with stores in St Paul’s Churchyard also suffering, albeit less, because of safety concerns and the temporary closure of the cathedral, minutes of last month’s planning and transportation committee show.

Last night a spokesman for the City said staff had been unable to inspect “sharp boxes” that they left outside St Paul’s for the safe disposal of syringes. Police have found evidence that protesters are injecting drugs.

It came as the High Court ruled that the petition to evict the protesters will be heard on 19 December. It is expected to take three to four days.

Separately, UBS refused to comment on claims that a possession order issued against the occupiers of its disused Hackney building was unsigned and incomplete.

In Canada yesterday one woman was arrested as police cleared tents from the Occupy Toronto protest. Some demonstrators chained themselves inside barricaded tents and vowed to stay despite a court order.