East Sussex council spent nearly £690,000 on evicting campaigners and securing the site of the controversial Hastings to Bexhill road-bulding project, it was revealed today.
The activists set up camps, locked themselves in tunnels and stationed themselves up trees from December.
The local authority said the near £690,000 bill for removing the protesters and securing the site in the threatened Combe Haven Valley was "an unnecessary additional cost."
But the protesters known as the Combe Haven Defenders said: "Direct action has a long and noble history, for example the Suffragettes and the civil rights movement.
"The protest is far greater than the council led people to believe."
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