‘Get off the ****ing road!’ I bellowed across 3 lanes of traffic in my most ferociously loud teacher voice, only ever used for breaking up playground punch-ups. I’m petite so there’s the element of surprise. I’ve stopped footie fisty-cuffs in the tube at Fulham Broadway and a roly-poly drunken brawl on Putney High Street ‘Ya not our mum.’ one brother growled. That’s all bringing out the bitch for show. But on Putney Bridge last week, I was feeling genuinely GBH-ish.

Courtesy of Twitter/ Lucy E Bacon



The small band of protestors chose to shuffle their way backwards, smirking in an apologetically arrogant way, knowing full well they are untouchable. Of course they chose the northbound lane that was fluid. The southbound one is the really polluting one, being permanently log-jammed, but where’s the fun in waving banners in a 2-mile tail back not of your own making, eh? Credit to the drivers, not one hooted or revved out their frustration.

I read recently (Times, May 3) that an exasperated driver did drive over the foot of one of them and is now wanted by the police. Well. Is that justice? The Braverman is looking at ways to get them off the road forcibly, but in the meantime, what did the police do? Their vans got stuck in the grid-lock and they inched their way over the bridge like everyone else, looking more like their protectors. Bloody toothless. I’m heartened to see the Times is calling for more legislation. (Times 27 April) There’s rules about all-out blocking of a road without official permission, but these mobile obstructions crawl under the radar, and this needs to be tightened up.

Punishing a handful of drivers by making them even later for work is going to have NO impact, except to lose the goodwill of the public. Just stop oil JSO will be glad to know I have stopped driving over Putney Bridge, like many of us Putneyites, not because of their fool campaign; it’s the Hammersmith Bridge closure which has made a 10 minute drive into 50 minutes. So yes congestion works as a positive force. It’s obvious we all have to stop using petrol, but a  paradigm shift to alternative energy sources takes time, resources, infrastructure, a massive change in mindset. It’s at policy level they need to work and the government should initiate dialogue with them; channel their energies into something constructive.

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