A Message from the Leader of Cardiff Council: Extinction Rebellion Protests

Yesterday, Cllr Wild and I visited the city centre to meet with Extinction Rebellion protestors. We listened to their concerns, we asked them to consider the disruption caused to residents and commuters and we asked them to take the protest off the road. 

Unfortunately they refused to do so and protests currently remain on Castle Street for a second day, as well as on the City Hall Lawn. I am therefore sharing this statement from South Wales Police, which details the approach they are taking to the situation. 

South Wales Police is continuing to do all it can to minimise disruption in Cardiff city centre as a protest by environmental group Extinction Rebellion enters its second day. 

Motorists are advised to avoid the city centre as road closures remain in place from Boulevard De Nantes to Lower Cathedral Road. 

Head of Operations for South Wales Police, Chief Superintendent Stuart Parfitt said: "We completely understand the frustration felt by the public who need to access the city centre and we are working closely with Cardiff Council to manage and minimise the disruption, following well-practiced road closure arrangements. 

"The protest - which is part of a national campaign - has remained peaceful to date, with protestors refraining from causing damage, disorder or intimidation. The group has also acted with consideration when emergency vehicles have needed to access the blocked highways. 

"While there is legislation relating to obstruction of highways, this needs to be balanced with the human rights of those protesting. Everybody under the law has the right to protest peacefully and lawfully and the police must respect that right whilst also recognising the impact on the wider public. 

"This is a fine balance and something which is constantly under review with the local council and other emergency services. 

"Should the situation escalate, South Wales Police will respond accordingly, taking into account the rights of all those concerned. 

"Our response is in line with that taken by police forces throughout the country." 

As the situation continues to unfold keep following the Council's twitter account  for updates.