Posted: May 17th, 2013 | Author: matt | Filed under: Action, Events | Tags: activism, direct action, occupy, police, politics, protest, resistance, transparency | No Comments »
Hertfordshire Constabulary have confirmed to the Watford Observer that, in the words of the Observer, a ‘shadowy summit of world leaders [is] taking place in Watford next month.
It continues: ”The Bilderberg Group of around 140 influential figures including royalty, politicians and business leaders will meet at The Grove from June 6 to June 9… The group’s annual meetings have in the past attracted storms of protests from campaigners who accuse it of hijacking the democratic process.’
So local people are putting on a free framily-friendly fringe festival to Occupy Bilderberg. There’ll be:
- International Speakers
- ‘Hug a Bilderberger’
- Poetry and spoken word
- Delicious local and ethically sourced food and drink, plus grilled Bilderburgers.
All ages welcome, although it should be pointed out that this is not the same as the toddler-focussed consumer Build-a-Bear festival, which is what I thought when I first heard about it.
Updates and more info are at bilderberg2013.co.uk and bilderbergfringefestival.co.uk.
Posted: March 5th, 2013 | Author: Holly | Filed under: Events | Tags: access to land, protest, zad | No Comments »
Come to Grow Heathrow this Friday at 7pm for a talk and film screening about La ZAD!
La ZAD (Zone A Défendre) is Europe’s largest postcapitalist protest camp & anti-airport occupation, and is situated near Nantes in France. If you want to find out more before Friday, read this amazing blog!!
Posted: January 26th, 2013 | Author: Sam | Filed under: Action | Tags: activism, direct action, eviction resistance, protest | No Comments »
Reblogged from Combe Haven Defenders
Camp Decoy, the last of three camps standing in the way of the proposed Bexhill – Hastings Link Road (BHLR), faces eviction next Monday (28 Jan). If you have ever thought you might come and take a stand against this horrifying scheme, now’s the time.
We need to do absolutely everything we can to peacefully resist this eviction. We have been truly humbled over the last few weeks by the level of support from the local community, and from well-wishers far and wide. But now we need people, lots of people, to stand together and say: “Enough is enough, it’s time to protect the countryside”.
See here for maps and directions from the nearest train station (Crowhurst).
Combe Haven is the first of 190 sites at risk of new road development. If we allow this one, the others will follow and precious habitats all over the country will be lost forever.
Here’s how you can help resist the eviction of Camp Decoy:
1. Share this far and wide. Facebook, Twitter, Email. Phone your friends. Phone your local radio station! Tell everyone at work, at school, at college, and down the pub.
2.Donate! Use the donate button on the Combe Haven Defenders web-site, or send them a cheque. Every little helps: just £6 buys enough rope to secure a platform; £12 buys a lock to secure someone to it.
3.Most importantly – Come to Combe Haven and help to peacefully defend Camp Decoy!
CATCH THE COMBE HAVEN BUS!
Decoy Wood is the last remaining piece of woodland in the way of the BHLR. Wait a week or two and it may be gone. If live in England, Wales or Scotland and you can get 20 people from your community to come, we will provide you with your very own Combe Haven Bus, for free!
These buses will bring people to Camp Decoy on Saturday, and on Sunday we hope to provide training in tree-climbing, locking-on, and a legal briefing.
We need everyone, whether it’s for peaceful resistance, legal observation or general support. Whether you are willing to risk arrest or not – there’s a job for you!
The bus will return to your community after a few days of action, depending on the situation on the ground.
For more information about the Combe Haven Bus, please phone or text 07766 335506
Posted: January 2nd, 2013 | Author: Sam | Filed under: Action, Residents | Tags: protest, save botwell common, save our commons | No Comments »
Join us on Saturday 5th at 11am at Botwell Common to remind the council that our commons aren’t for sale.
The photos from last month’s fantastic vigil show the wide-reaching, outraged and unstoppable local opposition, with hundreds of formal objections to the council’s planning application expected amid thriving protests. Perhaps the future might even hold some spicy local direct action to save our commons.
Thanks to the Save Lake Farm (Keep Botwell Common) blog and John McDonnell’s blog for letting us know. You can like the campaign on Facebook or follow on Twitter for the latest updates.
Posted: December 17th, 2012 | Author: Sam | Filed under: Action, Events | Tags: access to land, commons, community, protest, save lake farm | No Comments »
Save our commons! Grow Heathrow residents hope to join a demo to save Botwell Common.
When: Thursday 20th December, 7pm
Where: Botwell Common
Come and show your opposition to development on one of our few pieces of common land that we have left – the much loved Botwell Common – by joining a candle-light demonstration on Thursday 20th December at 7pm. Bring a candle or lamp. Let’s make a statement: “hands off lake farm”!
Thanks to Save Lake Farm: Keep Botwell Common for this. Check them out at keepbotwellcommon.blogspot.com
Like the campaign on Facebook or follow on Twitter for the latest updates
Posted: December 14th, 2012 | Author: Sam | Filed under: Action | Tags: community, protest | No Comments »
This month, the council sneaked out its planning application to build on our local country park.
The planning application was not listed on Monday on the list of planning applications submitted in the last fortnight although it had been submitted formally the previous week. The documents relevant to the planning application were also not available. This is an absolute disgrace and means that local people will have less time to consider the application and lodge any objections. It also looks as though the councillors are trying to rush the application through over the Christmas period when many people and organisations will not be available to object.
John McDonnell called a public meeting on Thursdayat Botwell Church Social Centre, Botwell Lane, Hayes. Activists from Grow Heathrow attended to hear about the Council’s planning application and to help us protect our local country park.
If the council gets its way and builds on this open space, no area of green belt will be safe in our community.
The planning application is to put a school on the eastern end of Lake Farm Country Park between Botwell Lane and Botwell Common Road, Hayes.
This is for New 3 Form of Entry primary school (630 students) plus a nursery (45 students) and an Special Resource Provision Unit for approximately 12 pupils, associated car parking, hard and soft play areas, sports pitches, pedestrian and vehicular access routes and landscaping.
There are now doubts whether this new school is needed as two new primary schools have been agreed to be built in our area since the original council decision to build on Lake Farm was taken. In addition there are many other sites the council could use but they want to sell off those sites at our expense.
The planning application reference number is 68911/APP/2012/2983. It is open for you to comment on this application on the London Borough of Hillingdon website. Alternatively you can write to Jean Palmer, Director of Planning, Civic Centre, Uxbridge, Middlesex UB8 1UW. Please quote the planning reference number.
Stay up to date at keepbotwellcommon.blogspot.co.uk and john-mcdonnell.net
Posted: May 20th, 2011 | Author: Joe | Filed under: Cool Projects | Tags: climate change, protest | No Comments »
Isn’t the countryside noisy? The life which reverberates all around you in Notre Dame des Landes is astounding, a reminder of the world we have to save. The crickets never stop singing, every time you sit still some weird and wonderful new bug crawls across your leg, and the sides of the roads are packed with wild roses, bluebells, and forget-me-nots. But it’s all under threat.
The government of France is locked into an unholy alliance that is depressingly familiar. Here, as in Sipson, Hasty Lane, Essex and Edinburgh, the aviation industry has coaxed our “representatives” with its oily tendrils into a belief that the destruction of lives, habitats and the planet for profit is in the best interests of all.
The plan? Concrete over 2000 hectares of some of the most pristine biodiversity in France, taking away homes and communities, condemning local residents to a future of poor health and sleepless nights.
The aim? Two runways and two motorways, making Notre Dames des Landes into Europe’s most westerly hub, taking over some of Heathrow’s stopover capacity. All this, even as smaller airports around France and the UK are being forced to close due to a lack of demand. The hell-bent determination of the industry fixated in growth is not only morally criminal, its economically nonsensical.
But the resistance is growing. Since Plane Stupid last visited the ZAD (Zone a Defendre – the proposed site of the airport), the number of occupied spaces has rocketed from one to about 16. In fact, no one seems entirely sure how many people are now living here, preparing for battle: all that is certain is that it is growing constantly and people are prepared to put up a big fight. Together with those set to lose their homes and land, activists from across France and the world have been taking over sites bought up by the council to make way for the airport, and transforming them into living examples of the world they want to live in. There’s a bakery, which turns out enough bread twice a week to feed the whole ZAD, a bicycle workshop, a skipped supermarket which seems never to run out, a kitchens collective, an internet cafe, loads of chickens, herb gardens, treehouses, and, of course, vegetables.
This weekend we came to help open a new site, where our friend from Reclaim the Fields are reclaiming the runway. At 9 a.m. we gathered at Les Planchettes, the HQ of the ZAD where the main meetings and info point are based in a beautiful old farmhouse. The spectacle was extraordinary: about 350 people carrying machetes, pitchforks, scythes and spades, riding in tractors and trucks or walking alongside, many with masks on to hide their identities from the skulking gendarme (French Military) who accompanied us at a distance. The sound system and the samba band competed for airtime, as banners were hoisted up between trees across the roads we walked down proclaiming the resistance.
Finally we reached the soon-to-be site – a seemingly impenetrable wall of brambles – and while some of us grabbed a quick glass of 30cent vin rouge from the rapidly assembled bar, the tractors belonging to local farmers rolled onto the field, crushing the brambles top to make way for our machetes. Like an army of ants, the people fanned out across the area, some hacking back the undergrowth, some trimming the trees, others turning the soil and pulling up the roots, and others scraping everything together into huge mounds ready for burning. Then almost as quickly as they had descended. the swarm pulled back, leaving the 8 people who will live there with a large plot of cultivable land ready for planting. Resistance is fertile.
So many lives and hopes are embedded in this beautiful area. Our hosts, Paul and Elizabeth, have been fighting the coming of the airport for decades. They will not sell their home, with their chickens and horse and amazing rhubarb jam, to be flattened for profit. Paul sends his solidarity to Sipson, which he visited in 2009 and describes as “une belle quartier” of which he’s got many fond memories – especially the pub. From the people living 15 metres up in their beautiful fortified tree camp, to those who stand to lose generations of history on the land, the communities here stand side by side in their struggle and in ours.
The governments and corporations complicit in this campaign of demolition and disappropriation must be stopped. We will continue to strengthen our grassroots links with the people here, and will not let the bulldozers roll. BTP (Battiments Travaux Publiques) and Vinci, the key players in this ransack, have operations across Europe – including numerous subsidiaries in the UK. Vinci reckons they are “convinced of the need to adopt a responsible attitude to climate change” – their plans for the ZAD are so far from “responsible” it’s hard even to laugh. Both groups should be targeted wherever they try to establish themselves, and made to realise that their involvement in the attempts to destroy Notre Dame des Landes will make them an enemy of the global resistance.
Words taken from the Plane Stupid blog.
Posted: May 11th, 2011 | Author: Joe | Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: police, protest | No Comments »
Here’s what our local MP has to say about the recent police intimidation tactics which have been stepped up in the last couple of weeks. If your after a clear explanation as to what political policing means then listen in as John explains it really well from about 3 minutes in.
He was speaking hear at an emergency public meeting on the right to protest which was called for after Grow Heathrow was raided by 40 riot police in the early hours of the morning along with 4 other squats across London and Brighton the day before the royal wedding. As well as this, some high profile activists were pre-emptively arrested the night before the royal wedding – and on the actual day itself people were arrested for singing songs and for dressing up as zombies.
Posted: March 29th, 2011 | Author: Joe | Filed under: Media | Tags: cuts, protest | No Comments »
Saturday 26th March saw the biggest wave of protests in the UK since the march against the Iraq war back in 2003. First estimates suggest 500,000 people turned out to voice their opposition to the horrific cuts being imposed by the Tory/Lib-Dem coalition government. The majority chose to show their anger by marching to Hyde Park, others chose to smash windows and throw paint at the businesses who have been perpetuating the problems.
While most were sitting down comfortably listening to Ed Miliband claiming to be the solution to everyone’s problems, thousands of people took their protests directly to the corporate and rich elite who have been dodging their tax, and who remain unaffected by the cuts compared to everyone else.
It wasn’t pretty but it wasn’t meant to be. Tax avoiders Topshop was the first shop to be targeted as its front windows were smashed and paint thrown over the building. Selected corporate targets such as HSBC, Ann Summers, Santander, Lloyds, Mcdonalds, Starbucks and then the Ritz all received the same treatment. What was clear was that this wasn’t just ‘mindless violence’. These targets had been chosen as they represent the corporate elite who are protected by the government as opposed to the people.
At 3.30pm tax avoidance group UK Uncut, who called out for ‘occupy for the alternative’ beforehand rallied thousands of people to shut down Fortnum & Mason. Fortnum & Mason were added to the long list of companies who have been avoiding their tax. Again, they were also a clear symbol of the unequal distribution of wealth felt by many in the UK at the moment. Around 150 people who shut down Fortnum & Mason were held in custody for over 24 hours and released without their phones and clothing.
We at Transition Heathrow have always argued for direct action. Marches definitely have value, however, the Iraq protests taught us all that marching from A to B is not enough. Lets hope the direct action continues, if it doesn’t we have no chance of avoiding the cuts and no chance of creating the future we want to see.
We do not condemn those that took direct action. We do not condemn those who marched. We do not codemn UK Uncut or the TUC. The anti-cuts movement needs to remain united in the face of state repression.