A DIRECT ACTION pressure group called Insulate Britain today staged several sit-down protests on the M25 in counties across the South East.
One group of activists blocked the entire width of the double carriageway on the M25 by sitting down in a line at the traffic lights at junction 20, bringing busy traffic to a standstill. The capaigners held up Insulate Britain banners and notices apologising for the disruption to road users.
Some furious road users attempted to forcibly remove the climate change activists from the road by dragging them away from the line.
Police attended within 10 minutes of the roadway demonstration at junction 20 being staged and a number of arrests were made.
National Highways said there was also disruption at Junction 3 for Swanley in Kent, Junction 6 for Godstone in Surrey, Junction 14 for Heathrow Terminal 5 and Junction 31 for Purfleet in Essex. A total of 92 arrests were made at five locations across London and the South East.
Insulate Britain is a climate change action group. It is protesting to call for two main demands: for the government to fund the insulation of UK social housing; and for the government to introduce a publicly funded national retrofit strategy which will decarbonise all parts of society and the economy.
Supported by The Architects’ Declare Steering Group and the Architects Climate Action Network Steering Group, the group wrote to the Prime Minister in August threatening direct action if the group’s demands weren’t met.
Such Extinction Rebellion type disruptive protests have been criticised in the past for blocking vital emergency services. Today, the what appeared to be mostly elderly Insulate Britain protesters, temporarily suspended their sit-down protest to allow an ambulance to use the A41 roadway.
The Insulate Britain group is now inviting interested parties to join a virtual meeting held regularly every week as well as sign a petition.