A SUNDERLAND priest joined campaigners as they chained themselves to the gates of a naval base in a protest against nuclear weapons.
Reverend Chris Howson, Sunderland University chaplain, was at Faslane naval base, Argyll – home to a nuclear submarine – as part of a global day of action against military spending.
The Scrap Trident coalition is calling on the Government to spend cash on welfare, education and health, instead of nuclear weapons.
Rev Howson, who attended workshops and lectures on how to resist Trident before the campaign, said: “Nuclear weapons are an affront to the God of life. No threat could ever justify the deployment of a weapon that would indiscriminately destroy millions of innocent lives.”
About 20 protesters chained themselves to the north gate of the base and eight people locked themselves to the south gate.
Rev Howson, who is a member of the group Wear 4 Peace, said: “Billions of pounds are being spent on nuclear weapons that no one wants, while spending is being cut on libraries, sports centres and other public facilities.
“Alongside the rest of the nation, in the North East we have seen an endless torrent of public sector cuts, almost always hitting the most vulnerable hardest.”
The Faslane blockade was one of more than 100 similar protests across the world.