Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

Extinction Rebellion wins court challenge against Met Police over protest ban

An Extinction Rebellion protester who has scaled the scaffolding surrounding Big Ben at the Houses of Parliament, Westminster, London. PA Photo. Picture date: Friday October 18, 2019. See PA story ENVIRONMENT Protests. Photo credit should read: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire
An Extinction Rebellion protester who has scaled the scaffolding surrounding Big Ben at the Houses of Parliament, Westminster, London. PA Photo. Picture date: Friday October 18, 2019. See PA story ENVIRONMENT Protests. Photo credit should read: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire

Extinction Rebellion has won a High Court challenge against the Metropolitan Police over a London-wide protest ban.

The force imposed a blanket ban across the capital last month, prohibiting any assembly of more than two people linked to XR’s Autumn Uprising action.

But two senior judges ruled the decision to impose the ban, made under Section 14 of the Public Order Act, was “unlawful”.

Announcing their judgment in London on Tuesday, Lord Justice Dingemans and Mr Justice Chamberlain said the Met had no power to impose the ban because the Act does not cover “separate assemblies”.

Lord Justice Dingemans said: “Separate gatherings, separated both in time and by many miles, even if coordinated under the umbrella of one body, are not a public assembly within the meaning of … the Act.

“The XR Autumn Uprising intended to be held from October 14 to 19 was not therefore a public assembly … therefore the decision to impose the condition was unlawful because there was no power to impose it under … the Act.”

However, the judges noted there are powers within the Act which may be used lawfully to “control future protests which are deliberately designed to ‘take police resources to breaking point”‘ – one of XR’s stated aims.

In 10 days of protests to call for urgent action on climate change and wildlife losses, which started on October 7, XR activists shut down areas around Parliament and the Bank of England, and targeted London City Airport and Government departments.

The Met used Section 14 of the Public Order Act initially to restrict the protest action to Trafalgar Square, but following “continued breaches” of the order officers moved in to clear the area.

The force said 1,832 people were arrested during the protests, and more than 150 were charged with offences.

Those bringing the legal action include Green Party politicians Baroness Jenny Jones and Caroline Lucas MP, Labour MP Clive Lewis and campaigner and journalist George Monbiot – who was arrested after the ban came into force.

XR’s tactics are to cause “maximum disruption” and to overwhelm the capacity in police custody, including by refusing bail after being arrested.

The court heard the costs of policing the Autumn Uprising were in excess of £20 million.

Recommended for you

More from Energy Voice

Latest Posts