Police drag 85-year-old woman across road from fracking site – and promise to “review tactics”

171010 pnr anne power

Anne Power, 85, dragged across Preston New Road in October 2017.

Lancashire Police is “reviewing tactics” after three officers dragged 85-year-old campaigner Anne Power across a busy road during anti-fracking protests in Lancashire.

Ms Power, honoured by the Green Party conference earlier this week, was dragged by her shoulders with her unsupported feet catching along the road.

Afterwards she complained of sore shoulders and said she was “livid”.

Ms Power, who uses a walking stick and regularly attends protests in Lancshire, was sitting in a folding chair by the side of the road outside Cuadrilla’s Preston New Road site. She was filmed being surrounded by around a dozen police officers, several of whom lifted her from her seat. Three officers then dragged her to the other side of the road.

In one video clip, an officer is asked why police didn’t support Ms Powers legs. He replied: “We will next time, yeah”.

DrillOrDrop understands that the incident happened shortly after a tanker arrived unexpectedly at the site.

Campaigners had been listening to speeches at what has become a regular “Green Monday” event. The tanker reportedly drove through the crowd, waved in by Cuadrilla security staff.

This prompted people to sit down in protest. If the arrival of the lorry had been handled differently then campaigners would not have sat down, DrillOrDrop has been told.

“Seasoned campaigner”

The incident involving Ms Power was discussed the following day at a regular meeting of police and councillors.

DrillOrDrop understands that the police at the meeting described Ms Power as “seasoned campaigner”, who had been to the protests at Barton Moss in Salford as well as other protests and so “she knew the score”. They also went on to say if she was hurt she should put in a complaint.

A councillor at the meeting said:

“My argument was not so much with WHY she was moved but HOW she was moved.

“Personally I accept I’ll be moved forcibly if I refuse to move, but my belief is that Anne should have been lifted rather than dragged.

“I am concerned that the first response to this complaint was to label Anne as a seasoned protestor rather than think about the potential damage that could have been done to her.”

A spokesperson for Lancashire Police said:

“No complaint has been received about this matter but we will review our tactics, as we constantly do in any event, to ensure we are adhering to best practice.

“If anyone does wish to complain they can do so by visiting our website.”

The video footage led to complaints from members of the Green Party. Deputy leader, Amelia Womack:

“Seeing the video and photo of the formidable Anne Power being dragged across the road by police sickened me to my core.

“At the age of 85, Anne has been a heroic campaigner against fracking for years. Her passion and commitment is second to none. When the police treat our Nana’s with such brutality then we have to make sure they know that we won’t tolerate such callous actions, and they must be held to account.”

The Green Party’s Jenny Jones tweeted

“Disgraceful behaviour by @LancsPolice and it’s time that @LancsPCC stepped in to prevent even more reputational damage to local police.”

16 replies »

  1. I have made representations to the relevant North Yorkshire Police who have also adopted similar removal tactics with vulnerable people such as Anne Power. That she “knew the score” is irrelevant as also is the fact that she appears to have made no complaint. Never mind “best practice”; common decency and humanity decree that you do not move vulnerable people in such a manner. You lift them carefully, courteously and considerately. Are the police being set up to fail in their policing of such events in order that tougher methods might be adopted?

  2. Looks absolutely fine to me. She shouldn’t be out protesting if she considers herself a vulnerable person. To suggest lifting the person is absurd and could easily lead to an injury caused to both the old lady as well as the people doing the lifting.
    A really sad and pathetic story and if this is the level we have reached we may as well report on the ‘bullet’ that was found on an anti protestors keyring. We aren’t as petty as the opposition though.

    • The police that did this should be sacked! Are they not paid to look after the public, not corporate companies that bully and ruin people’s lives! [Edited by moderator] 😠 😠

  3. Good job the police for their way of handling this delicate matter.
    She is just being used as many otherz as a pawn and foot soldier in this anti fracking campaign by the higher order ie. FoE and the Greens eco Warrior.

  4. My previous Drill Or Drop post below, from the 10th October 2017 sits better on this page.

    ………STOP PRESS………

    12 officers SEIZE Tea Urn.

    I can see it now , picture this.

    The highly trained police negotiating officer chooses his words carefully as he clearly and precisely speaks his orders in to a PA microphone from a distance.

    SLOWLY, VERY SLOWLY put down the fairy cake. Put your hands in the air where we can see them.. Move slowly , very slowly away from the tea urn ….. HaHaHa

    You can’t help but feel for the officers ordered to execute this removal .
    Looking at the photos/video , the officers body language and embarrassment is clearly visible on their faces as they try and hide behind their baseball caps.

    “This is England, not 1930s Germany!’ Fury as tea lady, 79, who was providing refreshments to anti-fracking protesters is forcibly removed by TWELVE policemen who confiscate her table and urn


    ( 12 officers were required for this removal operation )


      SORRY, Drill Or Drop.

      Beat ya to it …… I had already covered this story on here at 6 40am on the morning of the 12/10/2017


      After what was said to be a text book operation from their commanding officers, when dealing with the violent fugative, dubbed the ” fairy cake kid ” and successfully neutralising the 79 year old ladies WMD Tea Urn .

      The famous ” Dirty Dozen ” we’re summoned once again for yet another daring and dangerous mission.

      The mission codenamed ” operation knitting circle ” was to go behind enemy lines and take out a disabled 85 year lady who was reported to be heavily armed with balls of Wool…………………..

      Disabled 85-year-old woman dragged across busy road by police at fracking protest


      ( 12 officers were required for this mission, honestly, I kid you not. )

    • Terri. You ask “At what age does the law no longer apply to you?” Anne Power broke no laws. She was peacefully protesting which is her right under the Human Rights Act. She put up no resistance to being moved. It was the MANNER in which she was moved that is so outrageous. Dragging her across the road with her heels scraping along the tarmac with all her weight taken by her shoulders. This is most definitely not the way to move a lady of almost 86 years old who has had 2 hip replacements and cataract operations. The Inspector admitted this when he was asked if her legs should not have been supported and he replied they would be next time. A paramedic, a nurse, a carer in a home for the elderly or indeed anyone with half a brain would never dream of moving a frail elderly lady in that way.
      It is very interesting and sad, but understandable that those who support fracking seem to be those with least compassion and care for their fellow man.

      • Well said! The police seem to be taring every protestor with the same brush. I as and other protestors are residents of small villages that do not want violence but the police don’t seem to judge on an individual basis.

      • She wouldn’t move otherwise, would she! What an ignorant reply. So what about the coppers backs getting messed up because she wouldn’t walk? Who’s not caring for their fellow man?

  5. I expect that the farmworkers of Inskip, Elswick, Wharles, Clifton and thereabouts will prove harder to shift as will their tractors, trailers and cattle!

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