The News Line reports on yesterday’s protests:
Hauliers angry over fuel bills
All along the A40, road hauliers and truckers, parked up their big machines and made their way to Marble Arch to warn Gordon Brown that unless fuel costs came down, there would be no parking up next time.
With banners strewn across their vehicles reading ‘Truck Off Gordon Brown’ and ‘Cut Fuel Cost Now,’ drivers and small owners listened to ‘Trans-Action’ speakers demanding ‘change’, before moving off to Downing Street to give Brown a letter.
Angry that a police ban had barred them from parking in London along Hyde Park as they had in the fuel protest of 2000, lorry driver Andy Lewis said: ‘If they want to get stroppy we will bring all these big wheels into London. This is their last and final chance.’
The hauliers want Brown to give a fuel subsidy, like the buses, and trains which all use untaxed red diesel. They say a 1p increase in fuel duty costs each driver £10,000 a year. At 8miles per gallon, it costs 61p per mile for fuel alone.
Peter Carol, haulier and Trans-Action chairman said: ‘We are heading to 10 Downing Street to hand in a letter asking the Prime Minister to have the strength to listen and save another British industry.
‘Hauliers are the 5th largest employers of people in our country. We are not the giant mega-carriers like Eddie Stobbard, but small family firms working hard.
‘The fuel price is a total catastrophe and if Brown does nothing the only winners will be people from abroad and if that happens even the government loses out.
‘Fuel is our lifeline, our reality. Trans-Action is not here for headlines, but to make a difference. See it right, see it clearly and see it through,’ he said to cheers.
Anthony Lillywhite said: ‘Brown is persecuting everybody, like with the war on Iraq, spending money where he doesn’t need to instead of spending it in this country.’
Brendan Haywood, haulier said: ‘Mr. Brown is loving it because he’s getting all the VAT. He needs the money because, if this government was a business he would be bankrupt.
‘Brown is hitting the working man who put Labour in.’
Alan Hingley, Managing Director of Transport Ltd said: ‘If we took every truck off the road for a week there would be no food or anything else to buy in the shops.
‘The country couldn’t even run for a day let alone a week.
‘If we dumped Brown, Cameron wouldn’t be any better. Things are going to change dramatically and it won’t be long doing.’