1st September 2017:
The police chose to unlawfully limit our movements at the entrance area of the Cuadrilla fracking site (under development since January) on Preston New Road (A583 between Kirkham & Blackpool) - preventing anyone from stepping onto the traffic island or crossing the road to the verge. There were no actions taking place and no clear answer was given when we asked 'Why?'. This has not happened before and as we've been gathering at this place since 5th January 2017 - it was clearly an escalation and abuse of power by the police.
As I've done many many times in these past 8 months, I chose to cross the road at various points and get onto the safe verge - no risk, no harm, no issues - yet each time, I was confronted by strong, wide police officers barricading, pushing, lifting, placing, manipulating and controlling my movements.
That brute force would win the day is a serious assault on our rights, our safety and freedom - and sets a dangerous precedent that cannot be tolerated. IF this went unchallenged... it would appear to be our acceptance and could allow the scene to be repeated on Monday morning and beyond... and then what? Further limitations and restrictions 'for our safety'? We are being effectively kettled/penned into a space of the police's choosing and that is a police state of affairs..
After my arrest and charge with 'willfully obstruction a police officer', I was offered the opportunity to accept a 'caution' but as that would involve lying (ie: I would have to say I was guilty of something) - I opted instead for truth and will attend a brief court appearance to make a plea of 'NOT guilty' on 10th October.
The honourable Protectors I have the privilege to spend my days with ...will NOT be tolerating these restrictions and I look forward to being 'on the other side' on Monday morning... join me? x