Video: policing concerns as man dragged from wheelchair at fracking protest. Again

Shocking footage has emerged of a disabled protestor being dragged from his wheelchair during a protest at Cuadrilla’s Preston New Road site in Lancashire.

Navy veteran Nick Sheldrick, who is paralysed from the waist down, was part of a group of protestors when police – witnesses say they were not from the local force – arrived en masse, apparently to escort lorries entering and leaving the site.

In video taken by other protestors, Mr Sheldrick tries to move his wheelchair into the lane to prevent the passage of a lorry and police run to pull him out of the way of it – but in the process appear to do more than was necessary, tipping him out of his chair onto the road.

The lorry is at some distance when Sheldrick starts to cross the centre line, but three officers run to intercept him and two of them tip his chair backwards, to the outrage of other protestors:

The officers may have been acting purely to save Mr Sheldrick from being hit by the lorry, which at first glance appears to have had enough time and distance to stop but passes within a couple of seconds as Sheldrick goes to ground.

But if so, then for officers to need to act so forcefully raises serious questions about why a heavy lorry was travelling on a stretch of road where protestors were known to be gathered – they’re there daily – and police were also on foot – at a speed too high for it to stop safely without requiring such a drastic intervention.

Protestors have been at the site ever since it opened after the Tories – supposedly supporters of ‘localism’ – overruled the local council to approve the fracking project. Nobody could therefore claim to be surprised at their presence and at a minimum a very low speed limit should be in for cethrough the area for the safety of protestors and police.

It appears either that this is not the case or that the limit is ignored, or else the lorry would have had ample time to slow and stop, given its distance when Sheldrick started to cross its path.

Mr Sheldrick’s outraged sister spoke to the SKWAWKBOX and said,

People need to know that this is going on. Nick has been knocked out of his wheelchair on more than one occasion.

A previous occasion, which also led to injury to Nick Sheldrick, took place in April of this year and was the subject of an article in The Big Issue magazine.

Dr Joanna Gilmore, a legal academic researching the policing of fracking protests, told the Big Issue:

There is a remarkable consistency across the country in how fracking protests are policed and that stems from a centralised policy formulated by the College of Policing. That means there haven’t been significant differences in how policing of protests has happened across the country. The tactics have been quite similar.

One thing which has been very, very clear is a massively disproportionate policing response to what in the majority of cases – possibly all – have been peaceful protests characterised by violent policing but not violent protesting.

Does this video show police ‘violence’? According to the strict meaning of the word, yes – but if police wish to claim they were acting proportionately to rescue Mr Sheldrick from imminent threat, then they must also account for why lorries are allowed to travel at speeds requiring such action through a known protest site packed with people.

The whole fracking debacle shows how little the Tories care for the wellbeing of local residents, overruling their wishes to approve a project against the vehement objections of local people and overturning a decision by the local council to block it.

The way in which the site is being policed – at huge expense and at a time when crime rates are soaring and the government has cut 20,000 front-line police officers – raises serious concerns about the apparent prioritisation of the fracking company’s wish to get vehicles in and out quickly or, if the site speed is judged to be safe, then concerns about the over-zealousness of police in removing protestors.

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14 responses to “Video: policing concerns as man dragged from wheelchair at fracking protest. Again

  1. IMHO to all the good folks who are responding to G .Hindson you , I fear , are wasting your time and playing his game . His only intention and purpose is to cover the actions of his Govt paymasters by appearing reasonable on the surface but below is an all out Tory Troll who is as unpleasant as they come .Visit some of the articles surrounding Grenfell tower fire and the DWP then note his ducking and diving to straight questions and utter lack of sensitivity and compassion , and then note here again on this topic the same pattern of comment .
    His reason is to undermine this blog ,make you think it is unworthy of belief and to question its writers honesty. Whilst providing a blanket of cover for the actions of the establishment and his Govt who he defends every time very subtly . There is a very clear pattern of action that he masquerades as ” debate” but successfully in some cases “pushes all the right buttons ” ,that wind up ( me included but no more ) honest decent people with a moral conscience , something he clearly has none of .
    No doubt he will respond to this in his usual whining way playing the injured sole who only wants debate , when in fact he wants to shut down and destroy any alternative narrative to the one his puppet masters want you to hear.
    I leave you to make the judgement and intend no insult to any who have genuinely tried to engage in meaningful debate with this Troll

    Liked by 2 people

      • Would that be because the video disproves your “no police shoulder numbers” supposition?! (The officer holding the gentleman’s right arm also shows a number although it would take enhancement to read it)

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      • That really is the best way ignore him , alert others to his purpose and reference back to comments made in other articles for proof of behaviour .Eventually most folks on the blog will clock Hindson or whatever its real name is for what it is a Tory Troll.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Perhaps we are facing an Orgreave situation with military types impersonating police officers without any identifying shoulder numbers. Hence the “officers” not appearing to be local bobbies. That was Thatcher’s MO and of course Maybot sees herself as Thatcher II.

    Liked by 1 person

    • At least one of the officers’ numbers is perfectly visible – it’s 2349. I’d be interested to know how you’ve established that the officers aren’t local.

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  3. Protestors have been at the site ever since it opened after the Tories – supposedly supporters of ‘localism’ – overruled the local council to approve the fracking project.

    *Points finger squarely at hindson – the champion of democracy.

    Plod. Big brave fellas. Put their lives on the line every day, they do…

    Imagine what they’d be doing to those proetesters (Excercising their democratic right, hindson) if the tories’d given them the payrise they want?

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    • So far as I can gather the Secretary of State was following the recommendations of the planning inspector (following a public enquiry) in respect of 3 of the 4 appeals in regard to this. On the 4th matter I think the public enquiry was to be reopened.That’s how the planning system works – there is an appeals mechanism; the very embodiment of democracy!

      “https://drillordrop.com/timeline-on-cuadrillas-lancs-fracking-plans/”

      “…Mr Sheldrick tries to move his wheelchair into the lane to prevent the passage of a lorry…”. Does the lorry driver not have democratic rights of passage along the highway? As above this may apply:

      “https://greenandblackcross.org/guides/laws/3-obstruction-of-the-highway/”

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      • Hindson the hypocrite.

        Votes for a party that says it wants more political decisions made at a local level, yet overrules council rulings when it denies their party members their corporate/financial interests regardless of the known risks to health & safety….As he’s previously made clear with Grenfell.

        Says we (plebs) must respect democracy. Would happily deny others’ democratic rights if it conflicts with his own politics – and tries to mitigate police brutality.

        ‘Democracy’ indeed. Wouldn’t know what democracy was if it bit the idiot on the arse.

        Simply cannot (Most likely will not, or is afraid to) answer a question without the response being a question.

        No regard for others’ dignity or wellbeing – yet complains when others he annoys use expletives.

        A sad, bitter, lonely old man, who’s demise will only be discovered once the neighbours notice the smell from his abode has become overpowering.

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  4. I don’t think that this does anything to further the cause. It is very probable the the police would argue that they did this as he was getting to close to moving police vehicles and that the reaction was OTT by the protestors.

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    • So why didn’t the Police simply stop the traffic for their safety as well as Nicks , using as per their handbook “the number 1 stop sign” you know where they stick their hand up in the air with the flat of the palm facing the oncoming traffic .Quick simple and much easier than dragging him out of the way.

      Just the mind set I guess that there is this demonstrator causing a problem and needs to be shoved out of the way of traffic as its cars and trucks that count not humans just like Orgreave .

      Liked by 1 person

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