I was walking Sparks around Oakwell Hall country park, admiring the wild roses

and the elderflowers when I started thinking “that motorway is a bit noisy today”. The M62 runs along the ridge behind the park, and there’s always a fair amount of traffic noise but this was even noiser than usual. I could hear horns blaring and thought there had been an accident until I suddenly remembered “oh, the fuel protests!” I wasn’t the only one who was a little confused; a coach driver in the car park asked me if a band was tuning up behind the hall. But once I’d got my thoughts lined up it all became clear – other clues such as the helicopter buzzing overhead, and the tunes some drivers seemed to be bipping out on their horns – made much more sense.

When we got back to the car I drove up the road, parked on the bridge and looked down at the traffic. It was moving, just not as quickly as normal. The BBC said this morning that they couldn’t go slower than 40mph, although a haulage guy on the BBC website was quoted as saying they’d stuck to 20mph. Trucks are also limited to the first two lanes so in theory the traffic should have flowed around them although, as you can see from the picture below, a van driver decided to show his solidarity and brought the whole lot to a crawl:

I am all for a greener Britain with less traffic on the roads, but simply upping and upping the price of fuel and the tax isn’t going to do it. More incentives to use public transport and move freight by rail would be good. M’husband saw a garage advertising petrol at 121.9p per litre on his way home today. Diesel is at least 15p dearer per litre. For my US friends, there are 3.785 litres to a US gallon – so that’s £4.61 per gallon or, with the exchange rate at just under $2 to the pound, over $9 per gallon.

Someone go slap the traders who are pushing oil prices up. And don’t simply tell me to drive less and take cheaper holidays. I have to drive my own car to do my job, and I am recompensed the princely sum of 20p per mile. We’ve been taking cheap holidays in the UK forever, in fact we have a touring caravan – which has suddenly become an increasingly expensive way to take a holiday.