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Four anti-nuclear protesters were fined £100 each and given 12 months conditional discharge on Wednesday (19th) in Taunton magistrates’ court. The four had chained themselves together and blocked the main access outside the Hinkley power plant in November. The blockade stopped entry and exit onto the site for over four hours until a removal team arrived from nearby Bristol. In court the four pleaded guilty to obstructing the highway.  The action raised awareness and protested against the plans for reactors at the Hinkley C nuclear power station site in Somerset. The defendants had no choice but to represent themselves in court as that was a better alternative to a duty solicitor according to one of the defendants SchNEWS spoke to, they went on to say “The outcome in court was expected and even though it could have been worse it is still not a good outcome. The conditional discharge restricts you from being active.”  

In a statement taken from a press release on the stop hinkley website speaking after the verdict, tree surgeon Zoe Smith from Bristol was in a defiant mood. “This is a national campaign and I expect there will be many more surprises for EDF over the coming months.

Barnaby Hodges, a catering worker from Glastonbury, said outside court: “I have never been arrested for protesting before, but like many people in Glastonbury I am ready to take whatever non-violent action is necessary to prevent the building of a potential Fukushima only 25 miles away. It’s not as if there aren’t any alternatives.”

There might be a small respite for the protesters as recent cutbacks at EDF’s parent company in France could mean long delays for the nuclear building programme. EDF has indicated for over a year now that it plans to spend billions on two reactors at the new plant at Hinkley. Confirmation is expected in March 2013 but with pressure from the French government to cut costs at the parent company the confirmation date might be pushed further away still.

Stories about similar subjects...

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Anti-road protestors in Bexhill were ambushed by an early start to the tree-felling on the controversial Bexhill-Hastings link road this week, but they rallied and using direct action have put a spanner in the works.

Restart of fracking after year and half delay set to amp up resistance

Activists gather outside UN talks at Doha, Qatar as negotiators pretend to debate climate change.

Anti-Nuclear activists blockade UK plants to protest the extent of destruction upcoming expansion will cause.

UPDATE: The sh*t's well and truly hit the fan since we published this interview last week... Stay tuned for more SchNEWS from the front...

With the dark clouds of unconventional gas extraction looming over the British Isles, the anti-fracking resistance is responding by cranking it up a gear. Community groups across the country are organising for a day of action on Saturday 1st December...

Twitter: @SchNEWS