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Birmingham Northern Relief Road Action

Natalie | 28.10.2002 23:14 | Birmingham

Road protesters dust off their harnesses and d'locks for a day out in Birmingham...

On Tuesday 22nd of October, about a dozen people stormed a Birmingham North Relief Road construction site where a bridge was being built over a canal. Ignoring the cries of 'this is private property' from the few workmen who were not working on the bridge at the time, the protesters climbed the crane which was being used to provide the workers on the bridge with steel. One protester climbed to the top of the crane and locked part of the machinery together, therefore preventing work to continue on the bridge until the end of the workman's day. There was no hostility whatsoever from the workmen who laughed and joked and made the most of their unexpected break. Meanwhile other protesters managed to stop a JCB digger and a dump truck. They chatted to the workmen and gave them biscuits. Despite having had no action on the BNRR for about three years, the site manager and his security guards were quick to read out legal statements and have them recorded on camera. Two of the protesters were arrested for 'depriving a workman of his tools' under a law brought in during the miners strike to prevent secondary picketing.

This action, happening just one day before the start of the British International Motor Show in Birmingham, represents the start of a new phase of the campaign against car culture and climate change in the face of a renewed road building program under the Labour Government.



Hide the following 3 comments

Road prostershave failed to prevent one road

29.10.2002 08:55

The road proesters over the past 11 years have failed to prevent the building of even one road from Twyford Down to the Newbury by pass, Thanet Way and the M11 Link Road! They will also fail on the Birmingham Northern Relief Road as well!

The road protest movement also seems to have failed to see that the real problem and the root cause of enviromental destruction is the capitalist system itself. To be fair to the road protesters anti-road group Reclaim The Streets did organise a carnival against Capitalism in the City of London in June 1999 but this was attended by a pathetic 4,000 people far less than took part in the mass tresspass at Twford Down.

Until the anti-road protesters and environmental campaigner start fighting the root cause which is capitalism thenthey will achieve nothing!

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Protesters have prevented roads being built

29.10.2002 09:34

After construction on a road has started no road has been stopped, but to say that road protesters have never stopped a road been built is extremely ignorant:
What about Snelsmore Common in Guildford? Where after a protest camp was set up the council backed out of building a road.
What about the massive road building programme that was planned being scrapped after the Newbury Bypass protests?
What about the Hastings bypass being recently scrapped, where there was the real threat of direct action was one of the factors to stop the road?
And remember it was the roads protest that kicked started Reclaim the Streets who then went onto confront capitalism at the Birmingham G8 summit (everyone seems to forget that one) then on to J18, etc....

Miss Point

socialist party bollox

29.10.2002 11:39

The comment from harlequin is a load of bollox

Firstly, people involved in anti-roads protests do not tend to be single issue campaigners but see that anti-roads not only defends the environment but also shows up how shit capitalism is

Secondly, far more than 4000 people were at the carnival against capitalism - 20,000 more like