Three Christians found not guilty over Insulate Britain protest

The jury found all four not guilty.(Photo: Christian Climate Action)

Three Christians who took part in an Insulate Britain protest having been found not guilty of causing a public nuisance.

The three Christians, Rev Sue Parfitt, 80, from Bristol, Benjamin Buse, 37, from Somerset and Ruth Jarman, 59, from Hampshire, were arrested after participating in an Insulate Britain roadblock at Cranford Parkway on the M4 on 1 October 2021. 

Insulate Britain protesters have repeatedly blocked busy roads and motorways as part of their campaign of civil resistance to put pressure on the UK government to insulate cold and leaky homes, but critics say the protests put lives at risk. 

The three Christians stood trial at Inner London Crown Court alongside fellow Insulate Britain member, Christian Rowe, from Southwark.

All four were found not guilty in a unanimous verdict by the jury.

Speaking after the verdict on Thursday, Rev Parfitt, said:"Despite all the odds I am thankful that 12 of my fellow citizens were able to see the bigger picture and, even when directed by the judge to find us guilty, they were able to understand that the unprecedented times in which we live calls for us all to step out of the box and make courageous decisions. Thank you jury.

"I think reasonable people can see that inconveniencing a few people on their way to work does not compare with the appalling threat to humanity caused by the blindness, stubbornness and greed of just a few people, including our government. We must keep on doing our best, giving our all and obeying God's calling to us."

Ms Jarman said: "I took part in Insulate Britain because my Christian faith pushes me to stand up for the poor and vulnerable. The government has long been aware that Britain has some of the leakiest homes in Europe. And now we have a cost-of-living crisis where people can't afford to pay their energy bills. I am overjoyed at being found not-guilty. However it is also so painful to think of the lives that might have been spared over the years if our government had just acted to insulate Britain's homes."