Injunction won against anti-HS2 protesters in Euston tunnels

Helen William, PA
·2-min read

An injunction has been won against protesters who have occupied a site close to London’s Euston station, the company developing the national high-speed railway has said.

After the High Court ruling, HS2 said the environmental campaigners who are still holed up in a tunnel in central London should leave “immediately” or potentially face a fine, up to two years in prison or both.

An HS2 Ltd spokesman said: “HS2 has today successfully sought injunctions which apply to the remaining illegal trespassers in crudely constructed tunnels under Euston Square Gardens.

“Mr Justice Mann recognised that the activists have put themselves and those working to extract them, in “grave danger”.

“The injunctions sought by HS2 state that the activists illegally occupying the tunnels are forbidden from entering or remaining on the land at Euston Square Gardens.”

A 100ft network of tunnels was discovered on January 26.

Wood from felled trees lies on the ground at the site of the HS2 Rebellion encampment in Euston Square Gardens (Aaron Chown/PA)
Wood from felled trees lies on the ground at the site of the HS2 Rebellion encampment in Euston Square Gardens (Aaron Chown/PA)

It was dug in secret by protesters who object to the redevelopment of Euston Square Gardens as part of the high speed railway line.

Under the ruling the protesters must stop any further tunnelling and also tell HS2, the Health and Safety Executive, London Fire Brigade and the police how many people are in the tunnels, according to HS2.

They must also give details of how many of those who are underground are children and information about the layout, size and engineering used for the tunnels should be handed over, HS2 said.

The campaigners are also being called on to cooperate so they can safely leave the site.

Earlier this week a 16-year-old boy, who had spent 22 days living underground during the protest, became the fourth person to leave the tunnels.

He was the youngest person taking part in the protest, a spokesman for campaign group HS2 Rebellion said.

Mr Justice Mann said he would hold a further High Court hearing on Monday to consider HS2’s application for a possession order.

During his ruling on Friday, the judge said the operation to remove the protesters had cost £1.35 million so far – about £64,000 a day.