Police swoop on eco mob and stop planned protest at M25 junction

2 November 2021, 08:08 | Updated: 2 November 2021, 11:21

Insulate Britain have been stopped by police at junction 23 of the M25.
Insulate Britain have been stopped by police at junction 23 of the M25. Picture: LBC

By Sophie Barnett

Police have swooped on a group of eco protesters from Insulate Britain who had planned to block a key junction of the M25.

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A number of defiant activists attempted to target the M25 to the north of London on Tuesday morning.

However, a number of police officers were able to halt the protesters - stopping them from getting onto the carriageway.

A total of 13 protesters tried to block junction 23, with all of them understood to have been arrested at the scene.

In a statement on Twitter, Hertfordshire Police confirmed several people had been arrested.

Read more: Eco mob block rush-hour traffic in Manchester as they target city for first time

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They said officers were called at 7.45am to reports of protesters near junction 23, Bignells Corner.

"Officers are at the scene and working to resolve the disruption as quickly as possible," the force said.

"Several people have been arrested."

The protesters continue to defy a high court injunction, which bans them from blocking any key routes in the UK.

Read more: Eco protesters wander down M25 towards oncoming traffic in latest demonstration

Jess, one of the protesters who was stopped by police, said they were unable to get onto the road today.

"Sadly, we didn't manage to make it onto the road," she told LBC.

"The police were here as we arrived, so we are now just sat here on the side of the road."

Asked what her plan was next, Jess replied: "This officer has arrested me already, I am sat here and he's holding me, so I'll just be here and then I will be arrested."

She told LBC this is the seventh time she has been arrested for protesting with Insulate Britain in recent weeks.

"I think it's really important," she explained.

"I've read the statistics, of climate stuff, I've read about the fuel poverty stuff, I keep hearing about how many thousands of people are going to die.

"Today it's cold, it's starting. I'm really feeling this sense of urgency."

Biff, 54, a retail worker from Canterbury, added: "I am honoured and privileged to stand in solidarity with my brave friends who have been the first to receive their committal dates; facing unlimited fines and prison sentences for conducting proportionate nonviolent civil resistance to stop our government destroying this country with their cowardice and greed.

“I too have broken the High Court Injunctions several times and I will continue to do so until this treasonous government, supported by heartless and scared journalists, starts to take credible action to safeguard its citizens' lives.”

The protest had little impact on traffic this morning, with just one lane closed by police.

The latest protest attempt came as world leaders began the third day of key climate talks at COP26 in Glasgow.

On Monday Boris Johnson, Sir David Attenborough and Prince Charles all delivered speeches calling on leaders to act now.

This story is being updated