Ian Bone: Who is the protester who harassed Jacob Rees-Mogg?

Ian Bone

Thursday, September 13, 2018

After shouting "Your daddy is a horrible person" to the children of politician Jacob Rees-Mogg during a protest outside his Westminster home, Ian Bone has been the subject of a media storm.

The 70-year-old anarchist and father of five is no stranger to protest and its subsequent controversy; he has been fighting against gentrification and social cleansing since the 1980s.


Rees-Mogg protest

According to a Twitter account under the name of Ian Bone, the protest was planned, and was an attempt to 'free' nanny Veronica Crook, 75, from Rees-Mogg's employ.

A tweet claimed that Rees-Mogg did not pay her the London Living Wage.

The account also retweeted a message from writer and Jeremy Corbyn supporter Owen Jones, who shared a picture of a banner, apparently made by Class War activists - the anarchiat group founded by Mr Bone - bearing Jones's image and the words "f*** off back to Oxford".

"I've had my own run-in with Class War, though admittedly their banner made me laugh," wrote Jones. "They brought it along once when I was campaigning against Nick Clegg in Sheffield Hallam. Quite artistic really."



Previous controversy

Protesting gentrification at a 2016 Class War gathering in London

Earlier this year, Qatari royals sought a high court injunction to stop Mr Bone protesting at their family-owned London skyscraper, The Shard. The protest, which was in response to luxury flats in the building remaining empty for years, went ahead on the condition that Mr Bone and fellow protestors didn't enter the building.

In 2015, Mr Bone's protest group Class War was behind an anti-gentrification demonstration in London's Shoreditch area, which resulted in a local breakfast cereal cafe being covered with paint bombs and graffiti.



The veteran protestor was a resident of Grenfell Tower for two years in the 1980s, and knew some of the people affected by the devastating fire. 

In a blog account under the name of Ian Bone, he recounts an informal system of sharing unwanted furniture during his tenancy, which involved placing it in the lifts until it was taken away by another resident.

He wrote: "There was a general satisfaction when an item went which translated into a genuine wish that your neighbours would do well".



Ian Bone interviewed by Jonathan Ross about his Class War newspaper

Mr Bone founded the anarchist tabloid newspaper 'Class War' in the 1980s. Costing 20p, the weekly newspaper sold around 15,000 copies at its height. It has since evolved into an anarchist movement.

He has written and published a book called 'Bash the Rich: True Life Confessions of an Anarchist in the UK'.

Up until 2005, he was writing and publishing the weekly 'Bristolian' newsletter, which exposed suspect council dealings in Bristol. The publication earned him the runner-up spot in the 2005 Paul Foot journalism awards for campaigning and investigative journalism.

In 2006, he told The Guardian: "I never thought about having a job or a career. Jobs and material possessions have never loomed large in my life."


Growing up

Mr Bone's father was a butler for Sir Gerald Coke, the grandson of the Earl of Leicester, so his family lived in a cottage situated on the Coke family's Hampshire estate.

In an interview with the Guardian, he said the experience made him grow up "bitter and resentful".

He says he found out about anarchism at the age of 15 after reading an article about it in a copy of Punch magazine in a dentist's waiting room.

He was the first in his family to go to university.