Four arrested at Ravenstruther coal terminal protest

Image caption,
Protesters blocked the front gate

Four people have been arrested during a protest at a coal loading rail depot in South Lanarkshire.

Protesters attached themselves to the conveyor belt and the front gate at the Ravenstruther terminal near Lanark.

The facility, which is owned by Scottish Coal, was targeted as part of an ongoing campaign against opencast mining in the Douglas valley area.

Up to 20 people were involved in the protest, which got under way at about 0600 GMT.

It was broken up by British Transport Police (BTP) at about 1130 GMT.

Details of the protest were posted on the Coal Action Scotland website.

It stated: "At 6.00am on the 10th of November, supported by approximately 15 other campaigners, two protesters attached themselves to the front gate of the coal terminal, effectively preventing access to the site.

'Illegally occupied'

"At the same time, two other anti-coal activists scaled infrastructure and attached themselves to the coal conveyor belt.

"They are currently preventing coal being loaded and transported at the terminal and plan to stay in place until removed."

BTP said three men, aged 23, 34 and 37, and a 22-year-old woman had been arrested at the site.

They are expected to appear at Lanark Sheriff Court at a later date.

A spokesman for Scottish Coal confirmed that the Ravenstruther rail loading terminal had been "illegally occupied by protesters".

He said: "The police are dealing with their safe removal. The action will not impact coal supplies to our electricity generation customers although it will result in deliveries being transferred from rail to road until the site is cleared."

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