Extinction Rebellion to stage 19-hour Norwich Western Link protest

Western Link protest

A silent protest will take place on the route of the Norwich Western Link - Credit: Neil Didsbury

Extinction Rebellion are to stage a 19-hour silent protest against the Norwich Western Link road.

Members of the climate change group will be gathering on a footpath near the planned route, in the Wensum valley, from dawn until dusk, on Tuesday (June 21).

Extinction Rebellion says its members will act as sentinels, walking in a silent, slow processional movement throughout the entire period - with occasional pauses to allow the protesters to rest.

Dr Barbara Howey, a climate activist and artist, said: "The idea is for sentinels to connect and bear witness to the more than human life of the Wensum valley, in silent respect, to invoke a sense of interconnectedness and a direct realisation of the wholeness of life, and as a silent protest against the proposed Western Link Road.

"If the road goes ahead there may not be another chance to connect in this way to this ancient landscape."

Norfolk County Council is waiting to find out if the government will pay £168m towards the currently estimated £198m cost of the road.

It would connect the A1067 Fakenham Road to the A47 west of Norwich.

The council says it can mitigate or compensate for the road's environmental impacts and that new habitats for wildlife will be created.

Norwich NDR Western Link revised route

An indication of how the route of the Norwich Western Link will need to change to avoid roosting maternity bats. - Credit: Norfolk County Council

The council will soon reveal the impact on the road's cost of a route change due to the presence of protected bats.