Tens of thousands of peace protestors gathered in London to call for an end to the bombing of Gaza.

Between 200,000 and 250,000 people were expected to gather for the demonstration according to a spokesman for the Palestine Solidarity Campaign, with the march kicking off at 1.30pm south of Marble Arch, in central London.

Demonstrators held banners calling for a “ceasefire now” and chanted “free, free Palestine” in the streets of the capital.

Among those attending the protest was former Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn.

The Metropolitan Police said the start time allowed for a synagogue event to finish.

The force posted on X, formerly Twitter, just before 1pm on Saturday, saying: “The march is forming up at the south of Park Lane.

“It will not set off until 1.30pm.

“There has been one arrest so far on suspicion of support for a proscribed organisation in relation to a placard.”

Around 1,500 police officers from forces across the UK are set to be on public order duties during the demonstration.

Jeremy Corbyn at the demoFormer Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn takes part in a pro-Palestine march in central London (Jordan Pettitt/PA)

The march set off along Park Lane and will continue to Knightsbridge and Kensington Road ending at the junction with Kensington Court where speeches will take place.

Speakers will address crowds near the Israeli embassy and they must stop by 5pm, while protesters must leave by 6pm, police said.

Saturday’s demonstration, calling for an immediate ceasefire, will be the second time since the October 7 attacks that a pro-Palestine protest has taken place near the Israeli embassy.

The Met said “there will be some who ask why” a decision to allow the protest so close to the embassy was allowed but that it is a “common misconception” that forces can allow or refuse permission for a protest to take place.

A static rally was held near the embassy on October 9.

Police officer speaking to protesterA police officer talking to a person taking part in a pro-Palestine march (Jordan Pettitt/PA)

“A real risk of serious disorder” sufficient for the Met to request that the Home Secretary ban the protest has not been seen at recent demonstrations and is not expected on Saturday, it added.

Protesters will be kept more than 100m away from the embassy grounds, behind barriers controlled by officers and face arrest if they do not do so.

Conditions under Section 12 of the Public Order Act meaning that any person participating in the march must not deviate from the route.

Police have also said no gazebos or other stalls can be erected in a specified area at Marble Arch.

Mounted police officers watch protestMounted police officers watch as people take part in a pro-Palestine march (Jordan Pettitt/PA)

The use of further police powers will be kept under review.

At least 28,663 Palestinians have been killed in Gaza since the Israelis Defence Forces began its military operation in the strip in October in response to the October 7 attacks, where militants killed some 1,200 people.

Israel is being urged not to send ground forces into Rafah on the Egyptian border, where many of the strip’s citizens are now living after areas closer to their homes became engulfed by fighting.