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Thursday, October 28, 2021

Motorway protests: Insulate Britain activists block M1, M4 and M25

IDBS ART GALLERY

The government is seeking a second injunction to prevent climate change protesters from blocking major roads.

Earlier this week, the Met Police arrested 39 Insulate Britain activists after they blocked the M1, M4, and M25 in their tenth protest in three weeks.

Insulate Britain has urged the government to insulate all UK homes by 2030 in order to reduce carbon emissions.

Their behaviour was described as “unacceptable, disruptive, and dangerous” by Transport Secretary Grant Shapps.

A woman caught in the traffic caused by the protest near Heathrow spoke to activists

Protests were held on the M25 near Waltham Cross in Hertfordshire, the M4 near Heathrow Airport, and the M1 near Brent Cross in north London.

The government obtained an injunction last week, which means that anyone who blocks the M25 could be found in contempt of court, but this hasn’t stopped Insulate Britain’s protests.

The maximum penalty for violating the injunction is two years in prison or an unlimited fine.

Mr Shapps stated that he had now directed National Highways to seek an injunction affecting major roads in south-east England.

Some people glued their hands to the road while others chained themselves together

Officers were dispatched to protesters blocking M4 Junction 3 at 08:27 BST and cleared the road by 09:00. Thirteen people were arrested on suspicion of obstructing traffic and conspiring to cause a public nuisance.

Soon after, officers were called to activists who were blocking traffic on the M1 at junction one, and 17 people were arrested for obstruction and conspiracy to commit public nuisance.

Officers responded to a third protest at M25 junction 25, which was cleared by 11:50 a.m. BST, according to the force.

Drivers stuck in long queues of traffic beeped their horns in frustration

According to Insulate Britain, the demonstrators included eight people who were released from police custody on Thursday after blocking the M25 at junction 30 in Essex, as well as others who were arrested earlier this week.

It vowed to keep up the pressure until the government made “a meaningful statement indicating that they will insulate all of Britain’s 29 million leaky homes by 2030.”

“It is incomprehensible that the government continues to postpone action on home insulation at a time when we urgently need to reduce carbon emissions, eliminate fuel poverty, and assist hardworking families with rising energy bills,” the group said.

The government announced a £1.3 billion investment to help people install energy-saving measures.

“What we need now is firm action from the police before someone gets killed,” said Hugh Bladon, a founding member of the Alliance of British Drivers.

“They’ve made their point; now get out of here and get this country back on track.” They are, however, spot on when it comes to house insulation.”

Sir Stephen House, Deputy Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police, stated that officers were “putting their lives in danger” in order to clear protests quickly.

“The most recent one I saw had officers running between articulated lorries moving on the M25’s main carriageway,” he explained.

SourceBBC
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