Police said they had a ‘comprehensive plan in place’ ahead of a planned protest against the Low Traffic Neighbourhoods scheme on Saturday.

Anti-LTN campaigners are expected to descend on Oxford from across the country this weekend to protest the traffic calming scheme and so-called ’15 minute neighbourhoods’ proposals.

Among the speakers expected at the event in Broad Street on Saturday, February 18, are Covid-19 lockdown sceptics Dan Astin-Gregory, a You-Tuber, and campaigner Jonathan Tilt.

In a statement, detective chief superintendent Colin Paine of Thames Valley Police today (Thursday, February 16) said: “We will ensure there is a proportionate policing presence in place on Saturday and our priority will be to ensure the safety of all those engaging in the event, including road users, members of the public, event organisers and businesses.

“Our neighbourhood policing teams will seek to engage with those in attendance, and will be available to speak to and address any questions or concerns you may have.”

He added: “It is important to stress that where any criminal offences are committed, an appropriate response will be put in place and such incidents investigated.

“I would therefore seek to reassure the local community that we have a comprehensive policing operation in place to manage any impacts from the event, and I would like to thank the public for their co-operation and support.”

The event has garnered interest on social media, including from right-wing pressure groups.

Among them, one Twitter user, ‘@nickelsgb’, told his followers: “Anyone going to Oxford on the 18th of February to smash these barriers up remember the police work for them[,] although it’s you that pay their wages. Policemen[,] you don’t want barriers either[;] how will you get to any crimes[?] Best to turn a blind eye.”

Replying to the post, a ‘Michael Wilkins’ said: “If anyone gets arrested and charged for smashing up these barriers it’ll be f***ing hilarious.”

Oxfordshire county and city councils have repeatedly labelled false and misleading claims promoted online that the LTNs are part of plans for a 'climate lockdown' in the city.