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LATEST: Which roads are French farmers blockading on Thursday?

The Local France
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LATEST: Which roads are French farmers blockading on Thursday?
Farmers blocking access to the A7 near Montelimar on Wednesday. Photo by Sylvain THOMAS / AFP

French farming unions have vowed to ramp up the pressure, with an increasing number of road blockades, rolling roadblocks and other tactics to disrupt traffic. Here's what we know about Thursday's actions.

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Since the weekend, French farmers have been blockading major routes in the country, causing huge disruption on motorways, city ringroads and ports. 

The protests have also been increasing in intensity - on Wednesday riot police were called to the southern town of Agen because of town-centre protests, while on Thursday morning protesters stopped and looted 'foreign registered' lorries on one highway, burning the goods or distributing them to local charities.

The actions are part of an ongoing protest over increasingly stringent and contradictory rules - at both a French and EU  level - which farmers say are making their jobs impossible.

READ ALSO Why are French farmers so angry?

The largest farming union the FNSEA says it intends to increase blockades as the week goes on, and hopes to have actions in 85 of France's 96 mainland départements by Friday.

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Here's what we know so far about actions on Thursday, January 25th.

The below information is based on pre-announced demonstrations and may change throughout the day. If you have a journey planned, listen to local radio stations or follow your local préfecture on social media for the latest updates.

Paris

The protests began in the south of France but have been steadily expanding. Farmers are on Thursday threatening to blockade "the whole of the Île-de-France region", which comprises the greater Paris area.

Around 2,400 farmers in the Seine-et-Marne say they will mobilise on Thursday and keep up protests "for the duration". The local FNSEA union leader said: "If the government announcement do not satisfy us, we will blockade the whole Île-de-France region".

On Wednesday a solitary tractor made it onto Paris' famous Champs-Elysées avenue, before it was escorted out of the city by police. 

 

Calais

Farmers were blocking access to the Port of Calais on Wednesday, although their actions were targeted at lorries heading for the UK. Passenger traffic was unaffected and ferry and Channel Tunnel services to and from Calais were running as normal. It is not clear whether the freight blockade will resume on Thursday.

A16

The A16 in northern France, which provides access to Calais, is blocked at several points. Farmers demonstrating there on Wednesday said that their plan is to drive very slowly towards Paris (at around 20km/h) and eventually bring their protest to the capital.

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There have also been several blockades on access points close to Paris Beauvais airport, which may continue into Thursday.

A1 

Just south of Lille in northern France, the A1 highway was expected to be blocked at the Seclin area on Thursday, according to La Voix du Nord.

A26

Protesters blocked the A26 in the Pas-de-Calais département at the Setques exit on Wednesday, and were expected to remain in place until 2am. On Thursday, local media report there will be a blockade at the Béthune toll area. 

A2

Not far from the border with Belgium, farmers blocked the A2 at Valenciennes on Wednesday and local media reported that they would continue to do so through the night and on Thursday.

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A25

In northern France near Dunkirk and Lille, specifically between Bergues and Méteren, farmers blocked this area on Wednesday and were expected to continue until Thursday.

Alpes-de-Haute-Provence

The farmer's union, FDSEA, told local media it planned on beginning blockades on some roads in the département from Thursday onward. The specific details of which roads have not been announced.

Saône-et-Loire

There will be three 'opérations escargots' (rolling roadblocks) from the towns of Autun (along the D680), Moroges (along the E62), and Perrecy-les-Forges (along the E62) moving toward the Jeanne-Rose roundabout in Montchanin at 11am. 

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A6 

There will be a rolling roadblock along the A6 in the Yonne département, specifically from the tolls of 'Auxerre Sud' moving toward Lyon, and Avallon, moving toward Paris. There will also be a blockade at Nitry.

A72

The FDSEA and the Jeunes Agriculteurs unions are organising a blockade of the A72 motorway from 5am on Thursday at La Fouillouse junction. Traffic is expected to be blocked in both directions.

RN88

In the Haute-Loire département, there will be some protest action along the RN88 near Le Puy-en-Velay according to local media, but no specific information was available as of Wednesday.

A43

Blockades were expected at the Chignin toll along the A43 in the Savoie area starting at 10am, according to FranceBleu. Meanwhile, a demonstration was planned to take place in Grenoble in front of the Direction départementale des territoires (DDT). 

Nantes

Ouest France reported that moving roadblocks were expected going toward the préfecture of Nantes on Thursday, with groups departing from around the département. No further information was available as of Wednesday evening.

A64

In Landes, roadblocks were expected on Thursday near the Hastingues and Peyrehorade exits along the A64, according Actu France, citing the FDSEA.

A65

Also in south-west France near the Landes area, a blockade at the roundabout of Caloy, east of Mont-de-Marsan was expected to continue on Thursday.

Bordeaux

Along the Bordeaux ringroad, blockades at exits 26 and 27 were expected to remain in place until at least noon on Thursday. Rolling roadblocks took place throughout the day on Wednesday.

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A54 

Local authorities have announced that traffic disruption should be expected near exits 12 and 13 at Le Merle on Thursday, in Bouches-du-Rhône (the département home to Marseille).

A51

According to Franceinfo, the motorway will be blocked in three areas: near Manosque, Sisteron nord, at at two tolls in Alpes-de-Haute Provence from 6am on Thursday.

A7

The Jeunes Agriculteurs union in Vaucluse announced plans for rolling roadblocks starting at 6am from the 'Orange-centre' junction going toward Mornas.

As of Thursday morning, traffic was cut off in both directions along the motorway due to blockades at Saint-Rambert-d'Albon and Montélimar sud. 

A36

In the Doubs region, from 10am onwards, a rolling blockade was planned to go along the A36 on Thursday morning, in both directions, from exit 5 to exit 3. Disruption was expected at Vaux-les-Prés and Hautechaux-Baume.

The demonstrators were expected to move toward the Besançon-Est junction and the Marchaux service area.

A12

In the Yvelines department, a rolling blockade was moving toward Rocquencourt on Thursday morning, with tractors travelling at an average speed of 13km/h.

A81

Around fifty kilometres of the A81 were expected be disrupted amid three separate protests (both rolling blockades and blockades) in the Mayenne département. 

Repeated actions

The following roads were blockaded on Wednesday, and in most areas action was expected to continue into Thursday.

A35 and Strasbourg

Union leaders have called for blockades on the A35 autoroute. Meanwhile tractors from several regions will be travelling (slowly) towards France's EU capital of Strasbourg using the A35, A4 and N4 roads.

According to local media, a blockade at Meyenheim along the A35 (both directions) was scheduled to start at 1pm on Thursday and was due to last until Friday afternoon.

Brittany

In Brittany the Pont de l’Iroise bridge on the RN165  was blocked on Wednesday. A convoy of around 150 tractors is planning to arrive in the town of Rennes by Thursday.

A71

In the Cher département the A71 at Bourges is set to be a protest site on Thursday, according to local union leaders. As of Thursday morning, a blockade was also set up in the Puy-de-Dôme département, near Brézet. 

The motorway also blocked at Andrézieux-Bouthéon, according to reports from France Bleu Saint-Étienne Loire.

Dordogne

The town of Périgeux is expected to have 'serious traffic disruption', according to the local préfecture, which is advising people to work from home if possible.

A10

The union of young farmers has called a roundabout protest near Saintes, Charente-Maritime, with the intention of blocking the nearby A10 "for the duration".

A20

In neighbouring Haute-Vienne, local authorities say they anticipate disruption on the A20 on Wednesday and possibly into Thursday.

As of Thursday morning, local media reported the A20 would be blocked off between exits 12 and 14 in the Indre département.

Meanwhile, south of Agen, near Montauban, the A20 motorway was completely cut off going north towards Cahors, from exit 61, from Tuesday.

A7, near Lyon

Blockades on the A7 motorway near by Chanas (south of Lyon) began at 4am on Tuesday morning, with several tractors blocking the road and have continued sporadically.

A63 Bayonne-Bordeaux

According to local authorities in Pyrénées-Atlantiques, the A63 has been "blocked in both directions between Bayonne and Bordeaux at the Adour / Hubert-Touya bridge".

A61, A62 and A64 in Haute-Garonne (and Toulouse)

Local authorities say they expected traffic to be "very disrupted" on three major highways in Haute-Garonne on Wednesday, and these action may continue.

Both the A62 and the A64 saw blockades on Tuesday and these are expected to continue and expand - the Toulouse ringroad and city centre may also be involved.

Agen

Protests also took place in Agen town centre with riot police called to a demo near the mairie. Protesters also dumped bales of straw in a local McDonald's.

A66 Ariège

Farmers were blocking roads in southern France, near Pamiers (south of Toulouse) on Tuesday morning, along the A66 and RN20 roads.

This was the scene of the crash on Tuesday morning which resulted in the death of a woman and her young daughter.

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