`

Demonstration held outside prison where Sheffield fracking protester was jailed 

A demonstration is being held outside the prison where a University of Sheffield scientist was locked up for ‘lorry surfing’ at a fracking protest. 

Simon Blevins, aged 26, of Andover Street, Burngreave, was found guilty of causing a public nuisance after he and fellow protesters climbed onto lorries outside a shale gas fracking site in Lancashire to prevent a convoy delivering drilling equipment.

Simon Blevins.

Simon Blevins.

READ MORE: Missing Sheffield teen Brodie Burgin found safe and well

The disruption at energy firm Cuadrilla's base in Preston New Road, Little Plumpton, Lancashire, in July 2017 lasted just short of 100 hours, with the campaigners refusing to come down.

Blevins, a university researcher specialising in toxicity issues in urban areas, and Richard Roberts, aged 36, of London, were both jailed for 16 months, while Rich Loizou, 31, from Devon, was jailed for 15 months.

Supporters of the activists plan to march from Preston train station to HMP Preston, where they are being held, today in an effort to "send them some love."

READ MORE: Do not approach ‘dangerous individual’ wanted over murder

A message on a Facebook page for the demonstration said: "These guys took action because they get the big picture, they wanted to support
folks in Lancashire, and they know that fossil fuel exploitation at home is going to affect millions of vulnerable people worldwide.

"Now they've been torn away from their families and locked up. So lets pay them a visit together!"

This comes after a spokeswoman for Robert Lizar Solicitors said all three men will be lodging an appeal against sentence on the grounds that they were "wrong in principle and manifestly excessive.”  

At their sentencing at Preston Crown Court on September 26, Judge Robert Latham said he felt he could not suspend the jail terms despite accepting the impact of incarceration and the good they did in the community.

READ MORE: Man wanted over assault in Barnsley 

He said: "I do find they provide a risk of re-offending.

"Each of them remains motivated by unswerving confidence that they are right.”