114 Climate Change Protestors Arrested in Nottingham - updated

114 people were arrested in a raid on a school & community centre in Sneinton Dale, Nottingham, at half past midnight on Easter Monday, 13th April 2009. According to police and Eon, the planned target of the protest was the Eon coal-fired power station at Ratcliffe-on-Soar. The Ratcliffe-on-Soar coal-fired power station is the 3rd largest source of carbon dioxide emissions in the UK and has been previously targeted by activists.

Other power stations across the north and Midlands were warned some days in advance to heighten their security measures by police, and Eon warned all their staff nationally last month to be on the look-out, and what to do if confronted by protestors. It was an intelligence-led police operation, involving 200 officers from 5 different police forces. It is believed that it is the largest pre-emptive arrest and largest 'in-one-go' of activists in the UK (ie this excludes mass street protests and protest camps). Equipment taken from the school included cutting equipment, lock-ons, climbing equipment and food "for a prolonged stay".

Doors at the school were broken down, despite a member of staff having arrived with a key, and broken glass and other damage mean that the school has not been able to re-open after the Easter break; they knew nothing till police arrived en masse. Some people have had their houses searches whilst in custody, and these raids are continuing now everyone has been released. So far, no-one has been charged with an offence, and all are due to return to answer police bail in July - some have had bail conditions imposed. Legal advice on searches & seizure of property at homes - Activists' Legal Project briefing

This police action is reminiscent of the 16th April 2007 arrests of climate change activists on their way to protest again the M1 widening, while the protestors were held in custody their homes were raided and computers were taken. A year after the arrests the M1 case was thrown out of court.

Select mainstream articles:
Alan Simpson MP: More al-Ikea than al Qaida!
Mass arrests over power station protest raise civil liberties concerns
E.ON's fence plans after power station security breach
How do environmentalists spot a mole?