Court case against incinerator protesters dropped - BBC coverage

The four protesters arrested for "obstructing the public highway" last summer at Javelin Park as they campaigned for a clean alternative to GCC's mass burn incinerator have had the case against them dropped by the Crown Prosection Service.


The four, who have always denied the charge, have had to attend court to plead (all pleaded Not Guilty), waded through a mountain of paperwork, had spent hours in holding cells and have had their DNA and fingerprints taken - all at taxpayer expense only to have the case discontinued.

Evidence provided by Urbaser Balfour Beatty shows that UBB's ‘need’ for cement led to them (not the protesters!) blocking the highway as they used it as a temporary lorry park, and saw them demanding that police remove legitimate protestors ‘at all costs’. It is also clear from the papers that the police expected the protesters to plead guilty.  


Jojo Mehta, one of the arrestees, said "if we had pleaded guilty, this misuse of police time and public money for private interests would have gone unnoticed, vindicating UBB's behaviour. We were never obstructing the highway and they knew it. They were trying to hang anything on us to get us out of the way."

Dr Bradbrook (interviewed above) said "it has been recognised that continuing to prosecute us was wrong and misguided, it is now time to recognise that an incinerator at Javelin Park is wrong and misguided. Now is the time to Upcycle Javelin Park and turn it into something useful, a resources centre for the county where we could reuse and recycle rather than burn and destroy - the position of the site in the Severn Vale would enable such a centre to be powered by clean wind turbines rather than constructing a power source that is dirtier than coal”.

Martin Stockwell said "the action I took seemed to be the only way to highlight the huge mistake that the incinerator represents. I worked in the justice system and it was no small step for me to protest in this way. It’s a relief not to go to court but we need to continue questioning why we are burning what could be reused and recycled”.

If the Government’s decision to look at single use plastics leads to them being removed from our economy, then GCC will not have enough waste to feed the incinerator. It's long past time for our council and others across the country to take off their blinkers and look at the bigger picture.

The BBC Points West report can be viewed on Facebook here


Jojo Mehta