Freight News, Road

Don’t let Calais demos spark another summer of discontent, pleads FTA

[ May 6, 2016   //   ]

The Freight Transport Association (FTA) is warning the UK and French governments not to allow demonstrations planned in Calais this weekend to be the trigger for another summer of discontent on the French coast.

FTA says it has been alerted to possible disruption caused by a demonstration due be held on 7 May, and is concerned that this could be the beginning of yet another season of disturbance for the freight and logistics industry.

According to press reports, pro- and anti-migrant groups have been planning demonstrations in Calais this weekend. The regional police authority has banned on demonstrations relating to the migration situation in Calais and neighbouring towns, but far-right demonstrations have gone ahead in defiance of other bans this year, according to the rfi website (

FTA’s EU affairs manager, Chris Yarsley, said: “Disruption caused by demonstrations and the thousands of migrants camped out near the motorway leading into the port can’t be allowed to happen again. FTA is concerned about a return to the disruption witnessed last summer in the Calais area, and is once again planning to support the freight and logistics industry should there be a repeat performance of scenes we saw last year in and around the French port.”

Earlier this year, the Association submitted a five-point action to UK prime minister David Cameron, and encouraged hauliers to sign up the Border Force’s Civil Penalty Accreditation Scheme to help avoid financial penalties if migrants are found on board their vehicles.

The issue will be highlighted at an FTA Workshop to be held at Multimodal, NEC Birmingham, on Wednesday 11 May; Chris Yarsley will be appearing with representatives from Border Force and will be focusing on the accreditation scheme.

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