Anger erupted today over soaring tuition fees after Vince Cable said he would “love to be Father Christmas... able to shower money on students” but the country's financial situation made it impossible.
And students who lined the pavement outside Dr Cable's constituency office last Friday, protesting against the Twickenham MP’s broken pre-election pledge to protect tuition fees, were not impressed by the MP’s comments.
University of London student, Bernard Goyder, 19, said: “He is definitely not Father Christmas, he is more like a Father Christmas who cancels Christmas.”
Disappointed students had lined the pavement outside the Liberal Democrat's Twickenham office last week, protesting against his u-turn over university fees. They carried banners and chanted "Vince Cable keep your promises" over a megaphone.
During the election campaign Dr Cable pledged to oppose education fee increases but the coalition Government announced earlier this month the cost of education was set to go up. It is now thought university fees could rise to as much as £9,000 by 2012.
St Mary's University student Aimie Dover, 20, one of the students who protested at Dr Cable's Lion Road office said she took a stand because "education should be available to everybody".
At the time she said: "Obviously all of this is because of the cut backs and the Government taxation and things like that but I'm a continuing student, and want to be a teacher, and this will really affect me. I could end up have to pay up to £7,000 in fees now."
The theology student added: "University fees just keep going up and up and they always want more money out of us students.
"I think university will become more elitist [with the fee rises]."
Labour leader Ed Miliband also addressed the controversial changes to university fees in Parliament yesterday.
He said: “Do they not understand the anger there will be among constituents? Do they not understand the anger that will be felt in Sheffield, in Twickenham, In Eastleigh?
“It is about promises made and promises broken.”
But Dr Cable said on last night's Channel 4 News he stood by the Government’s decision.
He said: “We had to make tough choices and we have produced a package that is actually considerably fairer then the present one and a third of students will actually [have to] pay less fees than they do at the moment.”