Wednesday, 3 October 2012

The road to resistance in Sussex

NOT just housing developments but new roads are once again threatening the beauty of Sussex's countryside.

The photo above and this video show an event staged in East Sussex by local campaigners the Combe Haven Defenders, who are determined to prevent the environmentally disastrous white-elephant that is the “Bexhill-Hastings Link Road” from devastating one of Hastings’ and Bexhill’s most amazing natural treasures.

Some 200 people attended the “Stop the Road” Camp & Rally in Combe Haven on 29/30 September, celebrating the beauty of the valley and enjoying an amazing weekend of speeches, workshops, shadow puppetry, children’s theatre, story-telling, campfires, local music and great food.

The Camp saw the launch of the “Stop the Road – Save Our Valley” pledge. You can download a copy of the Pledge here.

Media coverage extended to the national press, with the Daily Mail and the Sunday Times (see below) both running articles linking the Camp’s preparations for future direct action with George Osborne’s plans to build hundreds of new roads around the UK.

The Camp was also name-checked in the Guardian, where a letter from the Defenders also appeared.

Other coverage included BBC Sussex, ITV Meridian, and local coverage on the Hastings [1] and Bexhill Observer web-sites [1] [2]

Meanwhile, the machineries of capitalism are threatening our wildlife and environment near Henfield in West Sussex, with plans being mooted for 10,000 homes on green land, creating a "new Milton Keynes", according to the local CPRE.

And Arun District Council's plans to concrete over their remaining countryside have gone so far that they have even incurred the wrath of Tory MP Nick Herbert.

Other ecocidal schemes in the pipeline are for 4,500 homes north of Horsham, West Sussex, up to 3,500 west of Ifield, West Sussex, and thousands more between Southwater and Christ's Hospital School.

With the prospect of a second runway at Gatwick Airport creeping back on to the agenda in recent months, it looks like a full-scale Sussex revolt will be needed to keep the money men and their bulldozers at bay!