Wigan climate change protestor arrested at Extinction Rebellion demonstration in London

Julie Hotchkiss (left, back row) with other XR Wigan activists in London
Julie Hotchkiss (left, back row) with other XR Wigan activists in London

A Wigan climate change activist has been arrested at the massive Extinction Rebellion protest which has brought parts of London to a standstill.

Julie Hotchkiss, an NHS worker from Appley Bridge, was taken into custody by police in Westminster on Tuesday morning.

Related: Extinction Rebellion activists from Wigan say why they are taking part in the massive London environmental protests

She was arrested on Millbank as the controversial direct action movement blockaded roads in the capital city to demand further action from the Government on environmental destruction and climate breakdown.

She was carried away from the protest by around half a dozen officers and taken to a police station, activists from Wigan who were also taking part in the demonstration told Wigan Today.

One XR Wigan protestor said: "She's a brave woman, it's a selfless act.

Julie was one of several local activists who spoke to Wigan Today about their reasons for joining in the action, speaking of her concern about declining wildlife numbers and the need for urgent action for the future of the planet.

Leigh MP Jo Platt has given her backing, posting a picture of herself holding an Extinction Rebellion flyer on social media along with a message saying she recognised there is a climate emergency and activists were "doing something about it".

Ms Platt went on to accuse the Government of having "deaf ears" over the issue.

Extinction Rebellion blocked around 12 sites in London on Monday but police have now issued orders limiting legal protest to a site at Trafalgar Square.

Activists, known within XR as rebels, were being arrested on Tuesday as they attempted to hold other sites around parliament.

The number of people arrested in the first two days of the rebellion, which is scheduled to last a fortnight, is more than 280.

The Metropolitan Police said a 24-hour plan for policing the demonstrations is in place.