Insulate Britain member brags the public are thanking the group
Climate activist Biff Whipster claims a lorry driver shook his hand, 'thanking me and my friends who were in the road'
Biff Whipster, a member of Insulate Britain, said some members of the public have been thanking the group during its protests over the last few weeks.
He told the PA news agency: “I was in front of a lorry driver at one junction and he came out filming me, very angry. Just five minutes of conversation ended up with him shaking my hand, thanking me and thanking my friends who were in the road. They were glued to the road on behalf of his children.”
Mr Whipster denied the group blocked an ambulance during its recent protest at Wandsworth Bridge in south-west London.
“I personally unclogged 50ft of traffic in front of the ambulance, it was on the opposite side of the road, the opportunity to drive away was there,” he said.
“I appreciate the chaos of the situation. I’ve seen the clips on social media and it certainly looks like there was an ambulance that we were blocking. The ambulance was behind the camera though. He was in the opposite carriageway and we did clear the road.”
Biff Whipster said he had resigned himself to the possibility of potentially being thrown in prison or breaking court injunctions with his continued protesting.
The Insulate Britain campaigner told the PA news agency: “I am concerned, I have a house I was hoping I could grow old and die in. If I lose my house, so be it.
“I can’t not make the voices of the 8,000 people that are dying from fuel poverty heard and children that are going to die from CO2 emissions and the people currently in meaningless work that really could have proper jobs insulating homes.
“To me, that’s a price to pay. If I end up in prison, if I end up losing every single penny I have, I’ve done all that I can do. So yes, I care deeply about losing my house and my liberty, but the bigger priority is being here now.”
This comes after Insulate Britain has suspended its road-blocking protests.
The organisation – which has caused misery for drivers with protesters sitting on the M25 motorway and other major roads – said it will stop its “campaign of civil resistance” until October 25.
In a letter to Boris Johnson, the group wrote: “Insulate Britain would like to take this opportunity to profoundly acknowledge the disruption caused over the past five weeks.
“We cannot imagine undertaking such acts in normal circumstances. But the dire reality of our situation has to be faced.
“We invite you to make a meaningful statement that we can trust… that your Government will take the lead needed to insulate and retrofit our homes.”
Insulate Britain supporter Biff Whipster, a retail worker from Canterbury, unsuccessfully attempted to deliver the letter to Downing Street.
He told the PA news agency the group wants to “give the Government a bit of breathing space”.
But he added it will “recommence blocking roads” unless there is a “trustworthy statement from Mr Johnson about what actions he’s taking”.
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said: “Sitting on roads and preventing everyone else from going about their lawful business is downright dangerous and counterproductive.
“Rather than apologising to the motorist now and returning in a week-and-a-half, they must call off their reckless campaign forever.”