first anti-M6 expressway protest

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No M6 expansion GAME logo

M6 widening / M6 Expressway (Staffordshire / Cheshire)

The first direct action protest against the 51 mile M6 expansion happened on 13 Jan with a protest about exclusion from the consultations.

Despite 98% of over 9500 consultation respondents saying they wanted no road, the government are still ploughing ahead with this scheme (see RB bulletin 29 July and RB press release ).

The Highways Agency (HA) held two exclusive invite-only 'stakeholder' seminars in Staffordshire and Cheshire on 10 and 13 Jan. Residents groups were furious as they were not invited, and after requesting invites, were refused entry.

At the Cheshire meeting, three residents walked to the front of the meeting, with gags over their mouths, and remained throughout with signs denouncing the meetings.

The HA apparently described three options: 'broadly symmetrical widening', 'broadly parallel widening' and the Expressway which would be ' broadly adjacent'. Of great interest were the 'conceptual' junctions which showed the massive land take needed. The HA refused to discuss a third option of no expansion, or the issue of climate change. The HA will report to the government by early July, and Dr Ladyman (roads minister) has said he wants a decision by the summer about whether to widen or build a new road, with no roadbuilding not being an option.

There will be a Group Against Motorway Expansion (GAME) public meeting on 18 Jan as the resistance builds up.