Irate driver confronts M25 protesters as minister says demos 'aren't helping'

·4 min read

Watch: Driver launches passionate rant at M25 protesters on fourth day of demos

An angry driver has confronted climate change protesters who blocked parts of the M25 motorway for the fourth time in a week.

Members of the Insulate Britain group, which is demanding government action on home insulation, brought disruption to the London orbital road again on Monday.

Transport secretary Grant Shapps said the protests were “counterproductive” and called them “illegal” and “dangerous”.

Read more: Who are Insulate Britain and why are they causing M25 chaos?

One motorist confronted Insulate Britain protesters on Monday to make a passionate speech criticising their actions.

In a video clip published by LBC Radio, the man told two protesters: “I know what your fight is – I completely agree that this is a really, really good idea – but this is not the way to do it. 

(LBC)
A motorist, right, makes a plea on Monday to an Insulate Britain protester to end their demonstration. (LBC)
(LBC)
An angry motorist, right, told an Insulate Britain protester: 'You're making people hate you.' (LBC)

“You’re causing more pollution by all of these cars just sitting here doing **** all. This is ridiculous. You’re doing this over and over again, you’re not helping your cause. You’re making people hate you. 

“Go and protest in London, go down to Downing Street. Why do you think this is the solution? You’re just destroying people.”

On Monday, protesters glued themselves to the road and covered it with blue paint. At least 41 demonstrators were arrested, police forces said.

Insulate Britain said many of those protesting “have participated in all four actions to date”.

During last Friday’s protests, the third in five days, the group said many of its protesters were back on the M25 after being released from police custody the previous day.

There were dozens of arrests each day on Monday, Wednesday and Friday of last week when protests took place.

Shapps said on Monday: “I think it’s irresponsible, I think it’s dangerous.

“It’s completely counterproductive as well because they’re actually creating the pollution they want to get rid of by having cars standing still, so there’s no justification for that kind of action.

“I call on them to stop and the police to intervene.”

Asked if he wants police to take a more robust approach to the demonstrations, Shapps said: “The police will have to work out their approach and tactics, but it’s not right for our roads to be blocked for illegal protests like this to take place, and for it to happen repetitively.

Police officers carry away a protester who had glued herself to a slip road at Junction 4 of the A1(M), near Hatfield, where climate activists carried out a further action after demonstrations which took place last week across junctions in Kent, Essex, Hertfordshire and Surrey. Picture date: Monday September 20, 2021.
Police officers carry away a protester who had glued herself to a slip road at Junction 4 of the A1(M), near Hatfield, on Monday. (PA)
Police officers work to free protesters who had glued themselves to a slip road at Junction 4 of the A1(M), near Hatfield, where climate activists carried out a further action after demonstrations which took place last week across junctions in Kent, Essex, Hertfordshire and Surrey. Picture date: Monday September 20, 2021.
Police officers work to free protesters who had glued themselves to a slip road at Junction 4 of the A1(M), near Hatfield, on Monday. (PA)

“I’ve no doubt at all the police will want to learn from their experience and make sure they’re able to step in more quickly and efficiently.”

Hertfordshire Constabulary’s chief superintendent, Nick Caveney, said: “Protesters have made it clear that they intend to continue causing disruption. 

“Not only is purposely blocking a highway incredibly dangerous, it also affects thousands of members of the public who are stuck in delays as a result.

Police officers work to free protesters who had glued themselves to a slip road at Junction 4 of the A1(M), near Hatfield, where climate activists carried out a further action after demonstrations which took place last week across junctions in Kent, Essex, Hertfordshire and Surrey. Picture date: Monday September 20, 2021.
Protesters glued themselves to a slip road at Junction 4 of the A1(M), near Hatfield. (PA)
HATFIELD, HERTFORDSHIRE - SEPTEMBER 20: The traffic is brought to a standstill as protestors from Insulate Britain block a major roundabout near the A1(M) on September 20, 2021 in Hatfield, England. (Photo by Guy Smallman/Getty Images)
The traffic is brought to a standstill as protestors from Insulate Britain block a major roundabout near the A1(M) in Hatfield. (Getty Images)

“We have robust plans in place in order to minimise any disruption and to allow us to make arrests as quickly as we possibly can. This includes, but is not limited to, monitoring areas that have been identified as possible protest targets.

Read more: M25 protests 'legitimate', says Green MP Caroline Lucas

“I understand and appreciate the frustration regarding the considerable delays and inconvenience that has occurred as a result of the protests.”

Insulate Britain said in a statement: “Early this morning, Insulate Britain blocked the M25 for a fourth time.

“Actions will continue until the government makes a meaningful commitment to insulate all of Britain’s 29 million leaky homes by 2030, and all social housing by 2025.

“Many of those blocking the roads today have participated in all four actions to date.”

Watch: Insulate Britain protests block access to M25 for fourth time in a week

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