SAVE RADLEY LAKES PROTEST WALK – 10 th March 2007
Well there was a magnificient turnout for the Protest Walk from Abingdon Guildhall to Thrupp Lake and on to the Bowyers Arms. Over five hundred people congregated at the steps of the Guildhall to watch a presentation by the pupils of Radley Primary School who using their placards spelt out various messages to the onlookers - Save our Wildlife! Take your ash Away! Switch from NPower!
Len Lambe had put on a tableau reconstructing the way in which his next door neighbour, Mrs. Worthington, had been harrassed by the NPower Security Guards during the recent snowfall when she went down to the Lakes to do some photography.
Dr Evan Harris spoke of his meeting with NPower recently when they came to visit him in London and he reiterated the need for recycling in preference to landfill. He felt that the injunction had been a step too far.
Peter Green, as Mayor of Abingdon, said it was time for people to stand up and be counted. When people had asked him why he was wearing his mayoral chain on the last protest march he said he did it because he believed it was the right thing to do.
BrianWright for the Ramblers said he was going to urge his National Head Office to review the way in which their funding was distributed and to support the Save Radley Lakes Campaign.
Adriab Arbib, a freelance journalist, described how he had been accosted by NPower's Lawyers and Security Personnel and despite having requested permission to film from Didcot Power Station Operators, he was still threatened under the terms of the injunction and is waiting for the knock on the door and his arrest. He had worked freelance all over the world, and in some dangerous locations and 20 years of photographing civil rights and said "I've never seen such a draconian and aggressive piece of legislation as the one that we have here". The draconian powers of nPower's injunction were bad for the freedom of the press and for the individual and should be taken seriously.
Andy Boddington of the CPRE also spoke of the infringement of peoples' rights and the right to protest would be what people would be doing today as they walked past Thrupp Lake. He urged everyone present not to give up the fight to save the Lakes.
Dr Basil Crowley, Chairman of Radley Lakes referred to the original planning permission granted to the CEGB in 1982 under which they had promised to return the land to agriculture and had failed to do so. He pointed out the continual failings by NPower to conduct their operations at Radley in accordance with the terms of their planning permission, and allowing a cocktail of dangerous substances, Arsenic, Chromium, Cadmium, Mercury, Boron, Vanadium, Molybdenum, Antimony and Barium to be washed out into the settling ponds and then into the ground water and into the Thames. The Environment Agency had failed to monitor the outflow for three years.
The march processed peacefully up Audlett Drive, via Barton Lane and the Sustrans Way to Thrupp Lake. No Security Guards were to be seen, although there was a police car and two offiers in attendance just in case they needed someone to hold their hands.
The Bowyers Arms had arranged for food to be served outside their usual hours of opening, and hot drinks were available as well as the usual pub range of beers and spirits.
Len Lambe compered his Poetry/Song Competition and Eleanor Dangerfield's rousing rendition of a variation on the lumberjack song brought huge applause but some complaint from people in the restaurant who did not share the high spirits of the Competitors. There was a large number of entries and participants are asked to email their contributions to the website for inclusion in our report.
The Campaign Organises have been extremely grateful for the help given to us and our supporters' decision to take a stand against the giant multi-national RWE NPower.
There is another way in which you can help the Campaign – Who is your electricity provider? – Is it still with NPower. (this includes NPower Juice, which is otherwise known as NPower greenwash), then help the Campaign to cause NPower to rethink their plans to destroy Thrupp Lake , and SIMPLY SWITCH.
Please encourage your friends/family to switch too. If every one of our supporters persuades another half-dozen to switch from NPower, then this will really bring home to NPower the power of public opinion .
If you are not sure which provider is the best, here are a few which are featured on the Campaign Website
Ecotricity: http://www.ecotricity.co.uk Tel: 0800 032 6100
Good energy: http://www.good-energy.co.uk Tel: 0845 456 1640
Alternatively, go to http://www.simplyswitch.com Tel: 0800 011 1393.
Here you will find a chart of tariffs including combined gas and electric so you can compare and choose.
The next step is to fill in your details online and the job is done. You will be asked to take a final meter reading and after that, your bills will come from your new supplier. You will probably get a phone call from Npower begging you to reconsider, and that will be your chance to say exactly why you've ditched them. This is an extremely powerful action that you can take without too much effort.
Here is one of our members' odd odes which she has compiled to go with this appeal for help.
Happy together is Npower's motto
Gas and electric cost a lotto
They lure you in and say you'll save
And bingo! you are Npower's slave
So switch today, you might save cash
Tell Npower where to stick its ash!
Further information can be found at "Switch Energy Provider."