Page last updated at 16:37 GMT, Wednesday, 21 October 2009 17:37 UK

Protester injunction bid rejected

Steve Acheson
Steve Acheson said his sacking has had a big impact on his family

An energy company has been criticised for taking legal action against a protester under the Terrorism Act.

Scottish and Southern Energy's attempt to serve an injunction on electrician Steve Acheson was dismissed and called "a fantasy" at the High Court.

The firm wanted to ban him from holding peaceful protests at Fiddlers Ferry power station, Cheshire, where he worked until his sacking in December.

The energy firm said it planned to pursue a county court injunction.

"I am just so relieved, what they tried to do was diabolical," Mr Acheson said.

The judge, who took less than three hours to hear the evidence and decide on his verdict, told the energy company that their claims were "fantasy bordering on the edge of paranoia".

Scottish and Southern Energy had tried to curb his protests by applying for an injunction under the Prevention of Terrorism Act, because, it claimed, he was a risk to the staff and overall security at the site.

Mr Acheson, however, said it was a protest against his former employer BMSL after he was dismissed in December last year.

'Big impact'

The father-of-two, from Denton in Greater Manchester, used to work for the firm at the Fiddlers Ferry site, which is owned by Scottish and Southern Energy.

"Seeing as I used to work there it seemed appropriate to protest and make my point there.

"I have been protesting for the past 44 weeks. It is only in the past couple of months they have suddenly taken a dislike to it.

A Scottish and Southern coal-fired station
Steve Acheson has been protesting outside the factory for 44 weeks

"This has had a big impact on my wife and my children. I want to get back into work, so I will continue protesting back at the site."

Mr Acheson recently discovered he was on the union blacklist, among the 3,000 workers named on an illegal database which was exposed in court in July this year.

The list was drawn up and accessed by a number of companies, so they could check if potential employees were union troublemakers.

He said: "Work has been very hard to come by because of my name being on this blacklist, I am not a troublemaker.

"In the past four years I have worked just 16 weeks. Before my name appeared on this list I had regular work, no problem."



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