VIDEO: I was kettled, says Kirby Misperton fracking site tea-lady Jackie, 77
An elderly tea-lady moved by police from her table at the Kirby Misperton fracking site has described the actions of officers as "a bit heavy-handed and unnecessary".
Jackie Brooks, 77, is said to have been at the site in North Yorkshire with her husband Jim for the last month, serving tea and home made cake to protesters and police .
According to North Yorkshire Police, she and other people were moved yesterday morning because of fears that a nearby ten-foot high tower made of wooden pallets might collapse and injure them.
The great-grandmother-of-four described being approached by two officers as she manned her tea and cake stall at the site, where Third Energy want to carry out hydraulic fracking.
She said asked her to move and she had told them she would not. But they approached again and asked her, saying that if she refused she would be arrested - but she refused again.
They later returned and lifted her table and started to move it away, so Mrs Brooks was left with no alternative but to move.
Speaking at the site at Kirkby Misperton where she goes with her stall every weekday between 8.30am - 4pm, said: "I was prepared for the fact that I might be arrested.
"It was quite scary when I was surrounded by around eight police.
"It's called being 'kettled', where the police manipulate you and move you, and it was pretty daunting.
"At one point a copper tried to touch my arm to lead me away and I said: 'Do not touch me'.
"It was quite funny in the end because the protesters surrounded the police and started singing.
"They sang: 'Jackie put the kettle on' and then, 'Coppers take it off again'.
"The police maintained they had to move me for fear of my safety but that was a load of rubbish. It was all a bit heavy-handed and unnecessary."
The video of her being moved on by the police has since been shared widely.
Mrs Brooks and her husband, Jim, an 81-year-old retired US Navy-man who hails from Arkansaw - and has seen active service in Vietnam - first brought along a giant flask to make tea for the protesters when they set up camp around a month ago.
She said: "I'd say that we are not necessarily here to protest, we are here to support the protesters.
"Of course I do not agree with fracking and we're wholly behind what the protesters are fighting for.
"It started with us being armed with a big flask and then progressed to a small table and now we have a pasting table. I think we could do with something bigger now."
Superintendent Lindsey Robson, of North Yorkshire Police, said: “We have a duty to ensure the safety of everyone involved in protests at Kirby Misperton.
“Officers had to move several people away from a tower of pallets this morning, after we received advice from the local authority that it may not be safe.
"While some people were unhappy, we spoke to them and asked them to move for their own safety, which they did.
“We will always act to protect people from harm.”
But the move attracted anger from some protesters at the site, where Third Energy is to conduct a series of underground test fracks to produce gas for its nearby power station.