TfL granted injunction against Insulate Britain protesters after arrests

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TfL granted injunction against Insulate Britain protesters after arrests

Civil banning order applies to 14 locations around London after police arrest 35 climate activists

Insulate Britain protesters block Old Street roundabout in central London on Friday.

and agency

First published on Fri 8 Oct 2021 05.50 EDT

London’s transport network has been granted a high court injunction against Insulate Britain protesters aimed at preventing them from obstructing traffic.

Transport for London (TfL) said the civil banning order, granted on Friday afternoon, applies to 14 locations around the capital including some of its busiest roads and it follows several previous injunctions against members of the group.

Earlier on Friday, members blocked the M25 motorway and the busy Old Street roundabout in central London, in the group’s 12th disruptive action in four weeks.

According to the climate activist group, about 40 supporters blocked junction 25 of the M25 just before 8.30am on Friday, in defiance of an injunction obtained by National Highways, as well as the A501 at Old Street.

The Metropolitan police said officers were at both scenes, including specialist officers. “We know that some activists have used superglue to frustrate our efforts and to delay Londoners even further,” the force tweeted.

“We train for these scenarios and have specialist teams on hand to help remove people and make arrests.”

Thirty-five arrests were made for obstructing the highway, the force later said – 16 at the M25 roadblock and 19 at Old Street.

For nearly five weeks, Insulate Britain has been conducting an open-ended campaign of disruptive civil disobedience, vowing to continue blocking motorways and other busy roads in and around London until the government agrees to fund the insulation of all homes in Britain, starting with those of the poorest citizens.

In a statement issued on Friday, an Insulate Britain member, Tracey Mallagan, said: “If governments don’t act soon to reduce emissions, we face a terrifying situation. We won’t be worrying about shortages of pasta or loo rolls because law and order breaks down pretty quickly when there is not enough food to go round. The government won’t be wondering if there are enough hospital beds or ventilators, but whether there are enough people left to bury the dead.

“The government is destroying our country. Boris Johnson should be taken to court for treason. Our flesh and blood are being tossed aside as expendable.”

A spokesperson for TfL said: “The safety of people travelling on the capital’s roads is our number-one priority. We have been granted an injunction this afternoon by the high court which bans protesters from engaging in activities that obstruct traffic at 14 locations.

“This will help to protect London’s road network and everybody using it.”

The injunction applies to Hanger Lane, Vauxhall Bridge, the Hammersmith gyratory system, Blackwall tunnel, Tower Bridge, London Bridge, Park Lane including Marble Arch and Hyde Park Corner, Elephant and Castle including all entry and exit roads, the Victoria one-way system, the A501 ring road from Edgware Road to Old Street, Staples Corner, Chiswick roundabout, Redbridge roundabout and the Kidbrooke interchange.

People who break injunctions can be found to be in contempt of court, but prosecutions usually take several months, meaning there is no immediate impact on the protests.

Three previous injunctions do not seem to have deterred the protesters.

PA Media contributed to this report

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