AWE protesters arrested during demonstation

Basingstoke Gazette: Jane Picksley, who was later arrested, blocks the entrance to AWE Burghfield Jane Picksley, who was later arrested, blocks the entrance to AWE Burghfield

TWO protesters were arrested on Monday after helping to block the entrance to AWE in Burghfield.

A total of 29 people, from around the UK, blocked the three road entrances to the site for nearly five hours between 7am and midday, protesting against the UK’s programme to develop nuclear weapons.

The members of Action AWE and Trident Ploughshares prevented traffic entering the site to carry out construction work.

Two cars and a trailer were involved in the protest, with one car blocking each of the two roads to the main gate and the trailer blocking the construction gate.

The protest groups are calling on all parliamentary candidates to commit themselves to voting against Trident renewal.

Two people, named by the groups as Peter Chan, from Reading, and Jane Picksley, from Herefordshire, were arrested by Ministry of Defence (MoD) police and taken to police stations for questioning.

Hannah Brock, from London, was one of those locked to other members of Action AWE at the construction gate.

After the blockade had been cleared by the police, she said: “Today, we effectively shone a spotlight on the expensive, deadly and unnecessary work that the AWE profits from.

“It was an empowering experience, and we hope that it inspires others to take peaceful action to stop Trident renewal before 2016.”

A statement from AWE said it would continue to work with both the MoD police and the local police forces “to ensure the safety and security of the Burghfield site.”

It continued: “AWE recognises the democratic right of individuals to participate in lawful and peaceful protest activities.”

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