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Weekly’s video of near-riot at court gains record views

A video shot by a weekly newspaper photographer in the middle of a near-riot when anti-council tax protestors stormed a court and ‘arrested’ a judge broke the title’s website viewing records.

The Wirral Globe videoed the scenes at Birkenhead County Court where 600 demonstrators had gathered after a leader of the ‘British Constitution Group’ faced a hearing for non-payment of his council tax, which he claimed was illegal.

And the footage, which was just over a minute long and shot by chief photographer Dave Gennard, was watched for 11,041 minutes by more than 10,560 visitors to the paper’s website.

The protestors broke through a police blockade, stormed into the courtroom and ‘arrested’ Judge Michael Peake.

In chaotic scenes, police eventually managed to rescue Judge Peake from the mob and escorted him safely from the building.

Roads were cordoned off and scores of officers deployed to keep order, while six arrests were made on charges ranging from affray to assaulting a police officer.

Dave placed himself at the centre of the disturbance and managed to shoot some evocative footage of the demonstration – with figures which have just been released showing the video proved hugely popular with readers.

He said: “The crowd was becoming really angry and it looked like it was all going to kick off.

“But the pictures I wanted could only be shot if I was in right in the middle of the action, so that’s where I went.”

The video can be viewed by visiting