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Traffic chaos as Insulate Britain block motorway near Manchester Airport

Insulate Britain block M56 J6 island near Manchester Airport

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Traffic has been brought to a standstill at junction 6 for Hale, Greater Manchester, and the large airport. Some members of the environmental activist group have again attempted to glue themselves to the floor, according to reports.

Footage from the scene shows protesters sitting in the middle of the road near a set of traffic lights.

They can be seen holding Insulate Britain banners, Manchester Evening News reports.

A number of police vehicles appear to be at the scene.

Police say officers have ensured access to the airport, the busiest outside London in terms of passenger numbers in 2019, is still open.

The hub is a base for easyJet UK and Jet2.com.

Traffic is congested on the M56 in both directions as a result of the demonstration.

Eastbound traffic is back to junction 8 for Altrincham, Greater Manchester, while westbound motorists are in bumpet-to-bumper jams from junction 3A for Wythenshawe and Gatley in the county.

A spokesman for Greater Manchester Police said: “We’re currently responding to a protest on Wilmslow Road (A538), close to Manchester Airport. We’re working at the scene to minimise disruption and we’ll provide updates in due course. Delays are expected & we ask people travelling to avoid the area if possible.

“Posting to Twitter, an Insulate Britain protestor said: “We are taking our message to people outside of London because we want everyone to know that our government is killing our children.

“Britain should be leading the world with radical plans to decarbonise our society, instead our government is actively setting policies that will drive emissions higher.”

Andy Burnham, Mayor of Greater Manchester, has criticised the protests, one of the first to held outside the southeast of England.

He tweeted:  I can’t see how this type of protest does anything other than alienate people from the climate cause. Have been reassured @gmpolice are working to get things moving as soon as possible.”

And a number of activists attempted to target the M25 to the north of London during rush-hour traffic today. However, a number of police officers were able to halt the protesters – stopping them from getting onto the carriageway.

There were a total of 13 protesters at junction 23, with 12 arrested and one understood to be under restraint.

A series of protests by the group involving traffic obstruction began in September, with protesters blockading the M25 along with other motorways.

The protesters demand that the government insulate all social housing in the UK by 2025 and retrofit all homes with insulation by 2030.

Greater Manchester Police and Manchester Airport have been contacted for more information.

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