Ravenstruther action leads to jury trial in Lanark

This Direct Action is catching on! At 6am on Monday 15 December, 22 campaigners from yet another new anti-coal group, Coal Action Scotland, together with local residents, blockaded the entrance to the Scottish Coal-operated Ravenstruther coal rail terminal, near Lanark.  Coal Action Scotland is a part of the Coal Action Network that connects many of the groups campaigning and taking action against the coal industry across the UK. 

A 15ft tripod made out of scaffolding poles blockaded the entrance and 2 protesters occupied a support tower of the coal conveyor belt by locking their necks to railings with bicycle D-locks. The Rail Terminal remained shut for the whole day after workers were sent home in the morning. Not a single HGV transporting coal from the open cast mines entered the site and no coal freight trains entered the terminal. While this did not disrupt supply seriously, it is a stark reminder how many people are frustrated at the lack of action on tackling climate change.

Surprise move 
All 6 people arrested for the blockade were released from Lanark Sheriff Court on Tuesday evening. In a surprise move, the Procurator Fiscal acting on behalf of the British Transport Police requested the charge brought against the environmental protesters be increased to Breach of the Peace on Petition. This means that the trial will be by jury rather than a sheriff. Bail hearings at Lanark Sheriff Court were held in private with no pleas being entered.

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