It is believed that a demonstration was planned at the E.On powerstation at Ratcliffe-on-Soar as a spokesperson for the company claimed that it was the "planned target of an organised protest". 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. Similar to past police actions, some of the homes of those arrested have been raided while they were held in custody. It has been confirmed that 6 homes have been raided in Nottingham, including the Sumac Centre, and personal paperwork and computers have been seized. Activists are now being released on bail, to appear in court between the 14th - 21st July, with a variety of conditions. More raids are expected.
The initial action was at a school / community centre in Sneinton Dale, and eastern suburb of Nottingham. After all present were arrested and dragged in chains to many and various police stations, the police mounted a long and protracted search of the building, where the meeting had been held. Nothing was happening on the street for ages, much to the medias discontent. Thus, they started to interview each other, and passing locals, just to add a bit of colour, of course. At about midday, there was a flurry of activity, with the arrival of more police vans, and scientific support / scenes of crime and assorted mystery vehicles. Taken together, this amounted to a really significant police presence. you can only image what sort of evidence, and of what, they expected to find. Wardens patrolled the street to reassure the community of course.
Access was really hard, to see anything occuring of interest. However, getting away from the front of the building were all others were filming from, managed to find a friendly local who offered me the use of their garden for an overview. Thanks muchly! Police didn't like it of course, and sent a man away to find a sheet of sommat, to hide behind.
The address of some of those held in custody, were then to be searched under warrant. While chasing about, I knew of 6 locations in Nottingham, and probably many others around the country. I was asked and invited to be at the Sumac Centre, ahead of the expected arrival of the police teams.
After visiting other locations, at about 6pm, three van loads of police dressed in full fatigues and large boots, arrived at the gates of the Sumac. The warrant was for particular room upstairs at the centre. The majority of the squad remained on the street. Police could clearly see, that this photographer found the imagery quite oppressive, and the inspector ordered all his troops, back into the vans. Was asked to look into the searches upstairs, to discover there was much interest in the persons paperwork, [including much study of that well known anarchist and subversive free sheet, SchNews]. They stayed for about 30 minutes, leaving with an assortment of papers, and a computer.
After some were released, folks headed back to the Sumac centre, to recuperate, and be fed and watered. A debrief. Crash spaces arranged and a deal of sympathy. On leaving, I found 2 police serials continued to cruise the area. I followed about for a bit [wondering what they're up to]. One then parked outside a housing co-op, and stayed about a bit, generally being menacing. This was one of the location of the previous house searches. They then paid particular interest at the continued comings and going from the Sumac Centre. I guess they're not finished yet.
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Ratcliffe-on-Soar Power Station - The Beast
Photographer - Media: One Eye on the Road. Nottingham. UK
Member of the National Union of Journalists [No: 014345]
"It is not enough to curse the darkness.
It is also necessary to light a lamp!!"
Tash [alan lodge]