KEIR Starmer has also said he is not preparing to rip up the new police powers that have come under fresh criticism after the arrests of protesters ahead of the King’s coronation.

The Labour leader accepted Scotland Yard got some of their “judgments wrong” after the force expressed “regret” over preventing six Republic campaigners from protesting.

But he added it was “early days” for the Public Order Act that the group was detained under for 16 hours before being released and told no charges would be brought.

Rather than committing to repeal the legislation, he suggested fresh guidance could make improvements amid concerns it was being used to clamp down on dissent.

The National: Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said delivering on his five priorities was what the public wanted (Stefan Rousseau/PA)

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has defended the new powers which came into force last week as being necessary to give officers the power to tackle “serious disruption”.

Labour voted against the legislation as it made its way through Parliament, but now Starmer suggests an overhaul may not be necessary.

In an interview, the former director of public prosecutions told BBC News: “It’s early days and in my experience of public order legislation is that it takes a little while for it to bed in.

“Just because there’s a power to do something it doesn’t mean they have to do it in every circumstance, that often results in case law, in guidance that sets out a framework for decision making.

“We haven’t even got to that stage yet and I think it’s important that we do."

On Tuesday afternoon in the Commons, the UK Government said there are no plans to U-turn on anti-protest legislation which led to the six arrests the Met Police now says it “regrets”.

SNP MP Joanna Cherry tabled an urgent question asking if Home Secretary Suella Braverman would make a statement on the policing of protests during the coronation.

Police had believed luggage straps being used by Republic protesters to hold placards together could have been used as “lock on devices”, an act which is now banned in England and Wales.

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Cherry highlighted how protests in Glasgow and Edinburgh went off “without incident” but in London “where protesters had gone to considerable lengths to liaise with the Metropolitan Police in advance of their protests were detained, searched, arrested and held in the cells from 7am till after 11pm”.

She said: “The Joint Committee on Human Rights has repeatedly stressed that public authorities including the police are under a negative obligation not to interfere with the right to protest unlawfully and a positive obligation to facilitate peaceful protest.

“So why did police arrest protesters who had gone to such lengths to clear their protest in advance and why did they do so on grounds they now admit were not sufficient to charge them?

“What do citizens need to do now to clear a protest in advance? Was political pressure brought to bear on the police?

“Will he [the minister] review the legislation and set up an inquiry into what happened to these six citizens?”

Policing minister Chris Philp defended the government claiming hundreds of people had exercised their right to peaceful protest during the coronation and said there were no plans to change the legislation.

He also claimed the legislation had been debated and scrutinised at length, despite criticisms it had been rushed through Parliament in time for the coronation.

Philp said: “The coronation went smoothly and without disruption. I thank the 11,500 officers on duty alongside 6,500 military personal and many civilians.

“The police focus was rightly on ensuring this occasion passed safely and without major disruption. That was successful. All the plots to disturb the coronation were foiled. I would like to thank and congratulate the police for this success.

“I think hundreds of people did exercise their peaceful right to protest. At the point the arrest was made, the police reasonably believed there were grounds to do so.

“This house has just debated and scrutinised at some length the legislation and there is no plans to change that.”

The bill will include a 12-month prison sentence for protesters who block roads and a six-month jail term or unlimited fine for anyone who locks on to others, a building, or an object. Police are also permitted to stop protesters they suspect are out to cause “disruption”.

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During the debate in the Commons, Tory MP David Davis – who has called the legislation “too crude” – said the protesters were "wrongfully arrested" before being warned against saying this by Philp.

The SNP’s Alison Thewliss added she was “disappointed” Labour and the Tories had “wedded” themselves to the legislation, after Labour’s David Lammy said Labour would not repeal it if it was to form a government after the next General Election.”