By Mark Hookham And Abul Taher For The Mail On Sunday
Published: 23:02 BST, 20 April 2019 | Updated: 23:02 BST, 20 April 2019
Eco-activists are plotting to cause traffic misery for tens of thousands of families tomorrow by blocking one of the busiest roads into London.
Extinction Rebellion (XR) is organising a ‘picnic’ on the Westway, a key route along the A40 into the capital from the West, in a protest that would cause mayhem for tourists, Bank Holiday day trippers and Londoners returning home from weekend breaks.
It follows a week of chaos in London, during which hundreds of mainly middle-class eco-warriors blocked Oxford Circus, Waterloo Bridge, Parliament Square and Marble Arch, costing businesses tens of millions of pounds.
After fierce criticism of their ‘softly-softly’ tactics, police officers yesterday finally broke-up the Oxford Circus protest site.
Protesters were pictured tonight in Parliament Square after a day of demonstrations across the capital
One woman smiles as she is arrested and taken away by police officers attending the demonstrations in Parliament Square
Police officers were pictured trying to remove climate activists at the Extinction Rebellion demonstration in Parliament Square
Around 20 demonstrators were arrested after officers encircled them at around 1pm.
About ten locked their hands together inside concrete-lined metal tubes, which had to be broken with cutting devices. A final group of 200 protesters dispersed at 5pm and the road reopened, with dozens of officers on patrol last night to prevent it being re-taken. But Waterloo Bridge remained blocked. Police were urging protesters to confine themselves to Marble Arch.
Metropolitan Police Commissioner Cressida Dick condemned last week’s ‘miserable disruption’ which has led to more than 750 people being arrested, with 28 charged. With the protests set to enter a second week, The Mail on Sunday can reveal: