I am shocked that Thirsk and Malton MP Kevin Hollinrake voted for changes in the policing bill which, had they been in place, would have made peaceful protests against fracking impossible.

People from all walks of life turned out in thousands in Malton in 2015 to oppose fracking. The demonstration laid the foundation for the sustained campaign of opposition in Ryedale which hampered the development of fracking at Kirby Misperton.

No fracking is now taking place in Ryedale and although the licences still exist Ryedale is safe for the time being. Demonstrations like this took place around the country and it is primarily because of them that there is currently no fracking anywhere in the UK.

Under Priti Patel’s proposed new law, to go on a demonstration like this would risk a £2,500 fine and/or up to ten years in prison because, in being effective, it was also both noisy and inconvenient.

The Police, Crime and Sentencing Bill is a rag bag of measures. It includes welcome increased protection to emergency service workers and to some at-risk groups (although it fails to address the issue of violence against women and girls). However, bundling erosion of freedoms to protest with protections of individuals is devious and dishonest.

Will Mr Hollinrake change his mind and vote to protect the freedom of his constituents to protest effectively when the Bill comes back to the Commons?

Mick Johnston, Ebberston, Ryedale