Protesters from the group Plane Stupid have been at it again, this time targeting the corporate world of private air travel by causing disruption at London City Airport.
On Wed 10 June, four women and one man managed to break into the airport’s grounds at 2.30am using bolt cutters. They were dressed up as businessmen in bowler hats and suits, and they somehow managed to chain themselves to the wheel of a private jet.
The group made a human wheel clamp around the wheel of their chosen plane, and had to be cut off by police who arrived four minutes later. They were then arrested, and a spokeswoman for the airport said that they expect “arrests for criminal damage and breaking and entering”.
This is of course not the first time the group has managed to cause mayhem at the UK’s airports. 50 of the group protested at Stansted Airport in December and managed to force the closure of the runway for a while.
One thing that is so incredible about all this is how easy they find it break into these airports. Nancy Birch, the spokeswoman for the group, claimed the airport was a “major terrorist target”, but that “getting into it was child’s play.” This is a worrying fact by itself, and perhaps the group is actually doing the airports a favour by helping them to increase their security measures.
The reason behind the protest was to highlight the fact that private jets are far worse for the environment per passenger than commercial planes, and the group believe that they should be stopped altogether.
In terms of actual disruption, however, the protest was not entirely effective. A spokeswoman for the airport said that there had only been a “slight delay” to the schedule as a result.