Rachel Spence

A local group is protesting against tourism plans in Venice, where the number of Venetians is declining rapidly as residents struggle to afford to stay in the city.

Venice Protest, is tourism ruining Venice
Venice is not a hotel, say local residents

It is mid-morning in Venice and the Piazza San Marco is the usual mixture of strolling tourists and scurrying locals. Then the bells of the basilica strike noon, and some people freeze on the spot; a man grasping the handbag of a passerby; a circle of dancers; a woman reading her newspaper. For two minutes, they remain motionless while tourists take photographs and stare as if the locals were statues in a museum.