17.00 many people are coming into the camp with complaints about the aggressive policing of the London MET police, who they say have been harassing people and sometimes outright violent. Approximately six members of Bicycology were section 60'd in Barlow by the Met in view of members of public they acted aggresively and quoted section 50. Other people are reporting the day as a success, saying the perimeter of Drax has been penetrated several times by protestors, infrastructure climbed, banners dropped, people locked on, disruption to the power plant achieved, and a great deal of media coverage secured which for once has often contained a good deal of discussions about the issues themselves.
16.50 the area around the camp is still subject to a section 60 order and police are again searching people - a queue has developed of people waiting to be searched before entering the camp.
16.32 many people are now arriving at the climate camp after the demonstration and seem in high spirits.
16.12 the police spokesperson has just announced that there have been 38 arrests (8 for crminal damage and 5 for aggravated trespass) and said they re-affirm their earlier estimate that there were 600 people protesting today. he was unable to say how many people had been arrested inside the Drax perimeter. he also said that the ostrich puppet was "not as innocent as it first seemed", because it contained lockon devices "that could have been used to cause criminal damage". In fact the "lockon devices" were thin tubes forming the legs, totally unsuitable for using in lockons.
16.05 legal teams say there have been more than 30 arrests now.
15.27 a crowd of around 50-60 people has left the Drax main gate and is walking to the climate camp. reports say they're in a good mood and the local police are being friendly but the london officers have been aggressive.
15.00 another person has been arrested at the end of the lane by the climate camp. the police also attempted to arrest the photographer who was taking pictures of five police on top of the person being arrested.
14.56 some of the children and parents from the kids march have returned to camp.
14:44 earlier on some police were overheard asking of they could arrest people on conspiracy charges but were told no.
14.41 unconfirmed report that police are quoting ASBO style section 50 legislation to three people and saying they have to give their names and addresses.
14.37 increased police activity around the climate camp.
14.36 kids block now on way back to camp.
14.35 person with head injury now known to be in Selby hospital.
14.35 food and water given to police at Ash Spring Wood for protestors who are being held there by police.
14.35 it's confirmed now that two people were arrested at 6.30am inside Drax power station.
14.34 one arrest confirmed near to Ash Spring Wood, next to Drax, where police have surrounded a group of protestors.
14.30 eye witness reports two drivers (tractor etc) were arrested by police when they tried to squeeze past the kids bloc and the police, mounting the kerb.
14.26 bbc 24 news at 1400hrs said two of the 28 arrests were local members of the public (one driving a tractor)
14.10 the climate camp itself is fairly quiet at the moment, but the kitchens are still providing great food and people are calm.
13.49 around 150 people are currently with the kids bloc and bicycology group, who have 300 police for company.
13.48 confirmed that the person with the banner ontop of the power station lighting tower has food and water and hopes to stay up there for as long as possible.
13.46 Chief Inspector Barry Smith says the majority of arrests were outside of theDrax power station, but conceded that "a small number" had gained access.
13.40 confirmed that the earlier occupation of a lighting tower began shortly after 4.30am. the group of seven people first climbed almost to the top of the tower, some locked on and informed Drax officials of their presence. Later they unlocked and moved to another position.
13.32 police now saying York & Selby police cells are full - any further arrested will be sent to Northallerton or Scarborough or Witby police stations.
13.31 person with head injury from a steel truncheon has finally been taken to hospital about 2 hours after injury - it's not known which hopital
13.30 report of another person up a Drax lighting tower by the coal pile with a "No Future For You" banner.
13.24 person from kids bloc points out that the police broke their agreement about the march route to Drax, which is why at one point they were trying to negotiate over the route. they report that a proposed route was shown to a senior officer outside the camp three days ago which would have taken them on a shorter march along the back lanes. Instead the police forced them to take a longer route along the major A1041 road, thus causing much more local traffic disruption.
13:09 kids bloc has arrived at Drax south gate and is with the bicycle bloc, resting and eating.
12.50 most of white overall bloc have been in and around Ash Spring Woods and around Drax perimeter for some time now. many riot police in woods. one person reports having entered and left Drax perimeter. most people now marching with police escort towards main gate.
12.35 reports of 3 people arrested around 12:15 at gate 10/west gate.
12.23 police spokesperson doing live TV interview reports 28 arrests so far ('those inside the power station and for possession of weapons', says he is disappointed about people having weapons), when pressed on this he admits only two people have been arrested for 'possession of weapons', and that other arrests have been for criminal damage inside drax and 'public nuisance' outside. he would not give any further details on those arrested inside drax but says police estimate number of protestors at 600. confirms seven different police forces are involved in the operation.
12.15 TV news reports show people streaming across fields towards drax, and others slowly making their way on roads surrounded by police. brief footage of scuffle when people bypassed the police road block at the start of the march.
12.11 report of person with head injury being refused medical treatment by police
12.09 kids march update: report of one person with ostrich puppet being arrested for having an pen knife on them. police stopping and searching people at the back of the march
11.58 it looks like the giant ostrich puppet is being searched by police - looks like it's being confiscated - it has been taken outside the police cordon around the kids march. MET police are searching some people.
11.56 total of around 20 police vans now 'facilitating' kids march and scores of police. reports of people feeling harassed by police.
11:54 reports of one person still 'up' lighting tower with banner. police have said occupation of lighting tower took place on barlow common and not inside drax.
11.53 Another group has reached the Drax perimeter fence after playing cat and mouse with the police who were trying to block them on the roads so they have been crossing fields very near to the front gates. There are around 40-50 people near the main gate. Ch4 TV news are about to broadcast live from there and the police will be holding a press conference at midday.
11.37 Kids bloc now on the A1041, progrees is painfully slow. The police call this 'facilitating the protest', which means surrounding the march of people on all sides. Spirits still high however.
11.33 Bicycle bloc with sound systems are now at the South Gate of Drax, after a good ride. There is a 'Smoking Kills' banner opposite a banner from yorks coal board promoting 'clean coal'. People are picketing the south gate.
11.16 kids bloc finally allowed to move off again after a long delay. Now approaching the A1041 toward Cambleforth and then Drax. Police have told them they are only allowed to protest up until midday.
11.00 location of white bloc confirmed as just west of Ash Spring Wood. riot police wearing helmets are inside the perimeter. reports of four people entering the perimeter.
10.56 location of kids bloc confirmed as junction of Barlow Road and Comela Lane.
10.44 children are negotiating with police to take the most direct route (a little lane) to drax.
10.40 white overall bloc has made it to the perimeter fence of drax power station, making lots of noise. they can see riot vans inside the fences, other police moving towards them.
10.37 bbc reporting 6 arrest total, legal group are saying at least four arrests so far and one head injury.
10.35 white overall bloc is approaching drax after crossing several fields. they also took to the road but moved back into fields after police tried to block the road. A farmer has driven his tractor into the crowd at high speed but luckily did not hit anyone.
10.35 kids bloc stopped again near turning towards cambleforth, estimated to be around 200 people and children in the crowd, a good atmosphere - the children are holding a banner in front of the police line. there are around 100 police with them.
10.20 reports from kids bloc says police allowing them to move, but with a line of police at the front and back of them, and individuals are not allowed to leave the march.
09.47 report from the white overall bloc with the "You Must Be Choking" banner says they are making good progress cross country, and are being followed by three police photographers from the london FIT team.
09:45 - the procession at the end of the main exit from the camp has been stopped from proceeding onto their desired route. They are currently surrounded by the police. The police have said that under section 14 and section 12 they are going to proscribe a route for the march. the procession (kids block etc) are currently having a meeting to decide what action thay want to take.
09.36 the main march is now moving into the road from the lane and heading towards Drax.
09.20 there are about 15 police vans and around 50 police by the road next to the camp. a line of 15 officers is preventing the march from entering onto the road. some parents with children have complained about aggressive police behaviour. other groups of people are still splitting off from the main march and making their way towards Drax across the adjoining fields unhindered.
09.10 groups are splitting off from the main group. the bloc with the samba drummers and white overalls and dust masks has set off across the fields. other smaller groups of people are entering fields as it appears the front of the main march led by the kids bloc has been stopped by a line of police at the road.
09.07 the assembled blocs have moved out of the camp and into the lane which leads to the road, there's lots of cheering and druming and bike soundsystems, it appears the police are trying to make an announcement but it's too noisy for people to hear. People starting to move towards the road.
09.03 More people gathering, additional banners read:
- "Decentralise Power"
- "Stop this Madness"
- "Smoking Kills, Ban Drax"
- "Another World is Possible"
- "History Will Spit on us"
08.50 Various different groups are assembling at the camp for the day of mass action. These include a kids bloc with a banner reading "The Kids are Revolting!", a samba band, a bloc of people in white overalls and white dust masks with a banner reading "You Must Be Choking", a bicycle bloc, a group of the rebel clown army and a giant ostrich puppet (a reference to people burying their heads in the sand while climate change continues apace).
08.00 confirmed reports that seven people have occupied a tower at drax and that two other people are locked on somewhere around the perimeter.
06.00 reports that some people have entered drax power station and climbed a lightning / lighting tower
Last Updated: Thursday, 31 August 2006, 09:35 GMT 10:35 UK
I am writing this after a very long day.
Today I went down to Drax power station (near Selby) with my camera gear, to take photographs of the demonstration.
I arrived at the station at around 6am. I went with my dog too.
I was asked by several police to get out and search my car. Which I did no problem.
In the boot of the car had lots of old diy tools as I was given them when my uncle died. A policeman pulled it all out and lay it on the floor. Some items scattered on the road.
He told me that I would be arrested if I took any photographs and said he would instruct other police to arrest me. I told him I believed that he was wrong and that I was free to take the shots.
He got angry and told me to put the items back in the car.
I noticed my uncles pocket knife which I picked up and put it in my pocket to save it being damaged. To be honest I did this automatically as I use them a lot in my life. Often I have one when I go sailing, and also use them to open dv tape boxes and so on.
I was then told I would be searched, so I said no problems as ll I had what the pocket fold up knife and my switch card.
I was then told I would be arrested. To be honest I thought he was just having a joke. This was until I had the cuffs put on.
I was then placed into a van. Then they disided to put me into a car. They let me take the dog in the car. I had to leave my car with £5000 worth of camera gear in the boot.
At the police station they put my dog into a dog cell (Selby poliucestation) which clearly stressed him out.
At the station I gave my details, fingerprints and dna. To be honest I did not mind doing this as i thought at least if I ever get killed its going to be easer to id me.
But then I was placed in the cells. This was about 6.30am.
I was locked up with no shoes. Just sat in a small cell. In truth this was the most disturbing thing that I had ever experienced. I felt that I had lost all rights and freedom.
I was there till 11am. I was feeling rather sick and stressed out. I feared for my dog and also feared if my car got broke into.
I was then interviewed. I declined a solicitor. Maybe it was foolish, but Ifeel only someone who needs to create a story needs a solicitor. I had nothing to hide.
I explained what I had done. They informed me that the polcman had said “its a lock knife mate”. I was shocked as for a start I had no idea what tipe of knife it was, and I have never called anyone mate in my life. To be honest I did not think a 3” fold up fishing knife (its for fishing) was illegal. I pointed out that my record was clean and to be honest the only reason I was nicked was to stop me taking photographs.
I was then taken back to the cells.
After a short period I was informed that they would investigate further and to report to York police station on Sept 6th.
I then had to walk about 8 miles back to my car (at Drax power station). It was around 1pm. My feet were bleeding from walking so far. At least it gave the dog a good walk.
When I arrived ITN and a few other stations were filming, so clearly the no filming rule had been drooped. I managed to take some shots too.
So now I am home and rather upset from bering arrested.
I do not for a moment believe that the police will take my word over one of there officers. But to be honest I now feel that we have less rights than people did under the old USSR system.
I have lost faith in the law. I sawe today an abuse of police power. I know if I did not have the camera gear I would never been charged.
I find it microwavable that its a crime to transport in my car a pocket knife along with other tools. On this basis I suspect that I will be radid as I have knives and forks in the house.
So I write this, not to seek help. But to simply state that today I witnessed police abuse. England is no longer a safe place for me to live. I now fear the police powers for more than any criminal or barrister. I shall start to pack my things together as I now wish to leave this country to one that is honest and fair.
Adam Hamilton Blake
Please forgive my spellings as I am dyslexic.
I made it to the news:
A man arrested on suspicion of carrying an offensive weapon on Friday morning was being questioned and the remainder had been released on bail.