Tuesday, 16 February 2010

Protest Picket at Fiddler's Ferry - Terrorism Act threat to Northern Voices Photographer

'If you want to be done under the Terrorism Act just keep taking photographs!' exclaimed a Security Guard at the Fiddler's Ferry Protest Picket today. This exchange, between an anxious security official and an NV photographer, occurred as some 30 supporters of blacklisted electrician Steve Acheson assembled beneath the cooling towers of Scottish & Southern Power Station just off the M62 near Widnes. The company representatives seemed taken aback as dawn broke and the multi-coloured banners of the demonstrators began to decorate the wire fences facing the plant.

It was special turn out because a week or so previously the company's security guards had seized the banners denouncing the blacklisting of construction workers on grounds that they were defamitory. On that occassion the female police officer on duty had looked on while a female head of security had ordered the removal of the banners. Those reporting the event of that morning suggest that both the police officer and the Company boss of security addressed each other using their own Christian names as if they were pals.

Today the male police officers who presented themselves were very diplomatic and reasonable, even suggesting how the protesters might seek to regain their banners from the company. Today their were dozens of banners including Warrington Trade Union Council; the RMT union of railway workers; the Right to Roam ramblers; Unite the Union; the Socialist Party and loads of independent and do-it-yourself flags manufactured by the blacklisted electricians themselves. Later a company representative asked Steve Acheson to take down a couple of banners on their fence: one saying 'Scottish & Southern sold our banners' and the other an elaborate flag calling for 'Justice for the Shrewsbury Pickets'. Following this the protesters took the banners outside the gates were they gave out leaflets explaining their case.

It seems clear that Scottish & Southern PLC are determined to collect evidence to go to the County Court to get some kind of restraining order against these recurring protest pickets. Today, the Security Guards were themselves taking photos of the demonstrators as the sun shone on the nothing new.

No comments: