Wednesday, 22 February 2017

Day 36 in the Cuadrilla House...

Day 36 in the Cuadrilla House… and the good people took time to flourish in the brief moments of sunshine and to connect and share information about the rather huge National Rally this Saturday. We saw lessening activity on site and only a handful of trucks came, each escorted at speed by police escort and slow walked each time by a Protector for 15 mins; including a calm, peaceful and prayerful stand at the truck-side by a member of our Quakers Religious Society of Friends community. It’s clear that the site is set to sluggish at the moment with much idling. There are so many ways available to a diverse and creative movement, to take this industry down and we are at our best when we become more than the sum of our parts; I saw a lot of that today both at the roadside and online where much was shaken, stirred and shifted. Sometimes the unexpected extra challenges we face in this unpredictable struggle – strengthen our bonds and improve our nimbleness ;) The return of semi-naked Garstang cyclist was uplifting – all the more so because we sought the laughter and joy it brought into this often grey backdrop. We each have our way and EVERY act counts in some way to nourish some part of the whole of us x

Half-Naked Garstang Cyclist returns...
So our movement hey… the most intriguing, inspiring and infuriating thing I know. Sometimes we’re broken, damaged, fuelled with anger at the pain of this… but much much more often, we’re driven, empowered, fuelled with obligation to our young and united in the goal – even if not in the methods to attain it. We’re stuck together, whether we like it or not and we need every one we can get – if we are to succeed; issues arise, tempers fray, some may even be paid to rip and rear us apart with division but…

…When we most need each other to pull together… the very vast majority do so with gusto and surprisingly effective results come. I see in posts, messages, photos and emails relating to theDon’t Frack Lancs - National Rally this Saturday, that mock drill rigs are being crafted to a standard that would earn a Blue Peter Badge; newspaper adverts have been designed, written and paid for; letters to residents of the community have been sent/received and are full of warmth and politeness; online mailouts to huge mailing lists by Friends of the Earth England, Wales and Northern Ireland38 Degrees and Greenpeace UK have gone out; those with a spiritual connection to the earth are finding the most hypnotically beautiful music and chants for a blessing of the land and water; soups are being cooked and cakes baked; shopping for refreshments is done even without knowing truly how many we will be on the day; some know to become stewards for car-parking that got arranged to cope with over 100 vehicles and as for the coaches… they’re being booked, filled and financed to come from across the country. I do see a storm brewing over trestle tables – but hey, we can’t be perfect lol!

Where does this all go from here and how do we get what we NEED (ban on fracking) remains an emerging story – writing itself moment by moment at the side of a road in Lancashire, behind screens online across the world and in our own personal worlds too. I wondered today about what the final number will be on the final ‘Day ? in the Cuadrilla House… “ – then I thought about that old movie “They Shoot Horses Don’t They?” and shuddered just a little. See you tomorrow? x

Protector at the roadside, Miranda Cox shares the day from her perspective :)

My thoughts on day 36.
After the anxiety and skirmishes of yesterday, PNR was much calmer. A lot of supporters arrived throughout the day and the hedges continue to be decorated with yellow ribbons and soft toys.
Those who witnessed yesterday first hand discussed the effects it had upon them. Many new to protest were still shaken, trying to comprehend policing tactics. More seasoned protectors were able to assist with this process by recalling events on other demonstrations.
All of us are in agreement that we'd all much rather live our lives differently, without the fracking spectre hovering constantly in our thoughts and troubled sleep, but we all have resolved to see this out, to find a way to rid our land of this nightmare. The view over the road to the site, pulls at everyone of us. Amid the story sharing and bonding there is often humour and laughter, but as our eyes meet the sight of the fencing and the muddy destruction beyond the smiles fade and our resolution grows. There is unanimous frustration at the way the trucks speed onto site escorted by police and this for now niggles away at as we are vastly outnumbered and it seems unheard.
With Saturday's family event almost upon us we are excited for a huge show of strength. We will not be fracked.]

*Moving moment of the day – realising that the Quaker Protector at the truck delay, was in deep prayer throughout.

*Literally laugh out loud bit of the day… seeing semi-naked Garstang cyclist coming up PNR declaring love in just his cycle shorts and a lampshade for a hat – fellow Protector at the roadside remarked: “Lot of shady characters about.”. The return trip down the hill saw semi-naked Garstang cyclist without his lampshade and without his cycle shorts… thankfully for all concerned, he kept his underwear on… perhaps to keep off the chill <3 span="">

*Image thanks to John Hobson