Anger as fracking protesters are ‘kettled’

POLICE are facing claims they acted “disproportionately” in stopping a disabled anti-fracking protester from going to the toilet at an oil drilling site in Yorkshire.

Around ten activists from the Hull and East Yorkshire Frack Off group were yesterday being “kettled”, or contained, by Humberside Police at Crawberry Hill, near Walkington.

Simon Pook, of Robert Lizar Solicitors, who represents the protesters, said police “acted outside of their lawful duty” in the way they stopped them leaving.

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He said one female protester asked to go to the toilet 30 feet behind the police line and was stopped, before later being taken to Hull Royal Infirmary when her condition deteriorated.

Mr Pook said: “I am extremely concerned that Humberside Police appear to have acted outside of their lawful duty in the manner they ‘kettled’ my clients for over two hours.”

The campaigners say they want an explanation from Rathlin Energy (UK) Limited about plans for the wells at Crawberry Hill and West Newton, near Aldbrough.

Humberside Police said yesterday: “Police are currently in attendance at Crawberry Hill, Walkington, and are refusing people access to an area of land, which has been sealed off as part of an on going operation, to ensure the safety of all persons present, police, protestors and workers.

“Protestors who are currently in attendance at the location, have been advised that this area will remain cordoned off and, no access will be granted.

“Police have spoken to those people who are wishing to gain access, and recommended that they visit anywhere else within the local area, as they are at liberty to move around the rest of the area. Other protestors and media representatives have been accessing and leaving the site of their own free will all morning.”