Page last updated at 20:55 GMT, Saturday, 17 October 2009 21:55 UK

Arrests in power station protest

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Protesters attempt to breach the perimeter fences

At least 80 people have been arrested and police and campaigners injured during protests at a Nottinghamshire power station.

A police officer and another man were taken to hospital after clashes at Ratcliffe-on-Soar. The officer, who had head injuries, was later released.

Protesters had pledged to break through the fence and halt power production.

About 1,000 protesters have been at the site and have threatened to continue their action over the weekend.

Ten people were arrested early on Saturday on suspicion of conspiracy to commit aggravated trespass.

'Appropriate force'

Nine are from Manchester and one from West Yorkshire. They are aged between 19 and 53 years old.

Further arrests were made as protesters tried to breach the perimeter fence, for offences including conspiracy to commit aggravated trespass, aggravated trespass and criminal damage.

Police said although some protesters got into the site, officers remained in control.

Police and protesters
Protesters have been attempting to gain entry to the site

A spokeswoman for Nottinghamshire Police said: "Officers are using appropriate force to stop protesters, but are not trying to contain them, all are free to move away from the perimeter."

The A453 has been closed between junction 24 of the M1 and the A52 and diversions have been put in place.

Protest groups, including Camp for Climate Action, want coal-fired stations decommissioned in favour of more environmentally-friendly options.

Activist Ed Thompson said: "This station is going to be open for the next 30 years under current plans, but science says we have to start decommissioning power stations as soon as possible."

'Keep power on'

About the injured police officer, a group statement said: " "The Camp for Climate Action is at Ratcliffe to confront the causes of climate change, not get into conflict with the police."

Energy firm E.ON said plants that did not meet environmental targets were already being closed.

E.ON spokeswoman Emily Highmore said: "We are also working on making them lower carbon, but we can't just shut down power stations because we don't like them - we have got to keep people's power on."

Staff are sleeping at the plant over the weekend to ensure continuing power for homes.

The protesters have said they will stay at Ratcliffe over the weekend.



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