Plane Stupid shows its sol­i­dar­ity with sup­port

Heathrow pro­tes­tors sing out at mag­is­trates’ court

Harefield Gazette - - NEWS - By Robert Cum­ber robert.cum­ber@trin­i­tymir­ror.com

DEMON­STRA­TORS against Heathrow ex­pan­sion sang run­way-themed Christ­mas carols out­side court as three ac­tivists an­swered charges over a protest at the air­port.

Esme Wol­dren, 22, of Walmer Cres­cent, Brighton; Wil­liam Pet­tifer, 26, of Mill Lane, Rad­ford; and, Alas­tair Can­nell, 26, of no fixed ad­dress, ap­peared at Uxbridge Mag­is­trates Court on Wed­nes­day, De­cem­ber 23 where they all de­nied un­law­fully block­ing a tun­nel con­trary to the Heathrow by­laws.

They were all bailed and a date has yet to be fixed for a trial.

Pro­test­ers from the di­rect ac­tion group Plane Stupid, which is op­posed to a third run­way at the air­port, gath­ered out­side the court in a show of sol­i­dar­ity with the de­fen­dants.

The de­ci­sion on whether to add the third run­way will be made in the sum­mer of 2016 fol­low­ing a de­ci­sion to de­lay it by six months this month.

They un­furled a ban­ner read­ing “we are in it for the long-haul” and belted out a se­ries of run­way-themed Christ­mas carols, with lines in­clud­ing “oh jin­gle bells ex­pan­sion smells, block it all the way, oh what fun it is to be a cli­mate elf to­day”.

Speak­ing out­side the court, Ms Wal­dron said: “We do th­ese ac­tions to de­fend the planet from harm­ful and un­sus­tain­able in­dus­tries, and deem this a rea­son­able re­sponse to a fail­ing govern­ment. This is a govern­ment who in 2008 signed the Cli­mate Change Act, but who con­tinue to de­bate the con­struc­tion of a new run­way, which is com­pletely out of the ques­tion if we are to meet our CO2 re­duc­tion tar­gets.”

The protest in ques­tion took place on Thurs­day, Novem­ber 26, when demon­stra­tors from Plane Stupid parked a ve­hi­cle across both lanes of Heathrow’s main en­trance tun­nel dur­ing the morn­ing rush hour.

They locked their bod­ies to it and un­furled a ban­ner quot­ing David Cameron’s elec­tion prom­ise “No ifs, no buts: no third run­way”.

A to­tal of five peo­ple were ar­rested in con­nec­tion with the demon­stra­tion, with the other two bailed to re­turn to a west Lon­don po­lice sta­tion pend­ing fur­ther en­quiries.

n IN COURT: Three pro­tes­tors were charged with block­ing the tun­nel at Heathrow in Novem­ber

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