Gridlock on streets in Exeter

13 March 2019, 13:23 | Updated: 13 March 2019, 13:26

Many roads in Exeter were blocked as Extinction Rebellion activists carried out a 'swarming' activity in Exeter on Wednesday.

Some motorists were fuming about the delays as around 40 people walked into the middle of busy junctions on Heavitree Road and Exe Bridges to halt traffic for up to 7 minutes. 

They engaged in nonviolent civil disobedience, are expected to block roads across the city centre to protest at government and local authority inaction on climate change and to highlight the 'climate and ecological emergency' the planet faces. 

The swarming activity follows similar events in London and other cities where activists block roads. 

Motorists using some of the main routes into and around Exeter will be asked to tolerate limited delays, providing activists opportunities to hand out leaflets and talk to drivers sharing information about the aims of Extinction Rebellion and the problems posed by current transport policy. 

Drivers caught up in the disruption will also be offered snacks as they wait to move on. 

The action comes on a day when Devon County Council cabinet members are set to agree two multi-million-pound road schemes: the Cullompton Relief Road, costing £14.5m, and Long Lane and Silverdown near the Airport Business Park, costing £3m. 

Activists point to the inconsistencies and contradictions in Devon County Council policy, having declared a 'climate emergency' just two weeks ago, and acknowledging that 26% of greenhouse gas emissions in Devon come from transport.