Sizewell Chernobyl anniversary camp and demo

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Buoyed by the success of running a full 50-seater coach from London to the Fukushima-anniversary demo against nuclear power at the Hinkley Point nuclear-power station in Somerset in March, London Region CND decided to run a similar coach to a similar demonstration at Sizewell, marking the anniversary of Chernobyl, in Suffolk on April 21st. This was the 4th annual demo held there to mark this anniversary.

This time, 40 people joined the coach in London, which was not bad considering the threatening weather. (The previous April only 21 had joined a similar coach from London.) This number was made to seem all the more respectable when we found that only about 100 people were there for the demonstration, as against the over 1000 that turned up at Hinkley. The demonstration consisted of long speeches from the eminent or representative interspersed with music, a little singing, and a heavy rain shower, as against the burning sunshine of the previous year, and ended with a symbolic blockade of the entrance to the power station. This year it was a standing blockade - the ground was too cold and wet to invite sitting!

The organisation of the demo was in spite of all impeccable, with hot drinks and vegan cakes available throughout and a liberal, hot and tasty vegan lunch arriving on time for lunch. Also there were plenty of inventive and colourful anti-nuclear materials on display including a bicycle-pulled nuclear white elephant and impressive radiation costumes. The pub across the road however was less welcoming.

After the demo, we visited the anti-nuclear weekend camp on the beach, where there were display boards presenting lots of detailed information about Sizewell and nuclear power and heard that the previous night heavy winds had blown a marquee into the sea from where it had had to be rescued. After that we joined a "tour" of the base conducted by Peter Lanyon, who was very informative about what was going on at Sizewell and the absurdity of plans to build a new nuclear power station there on such an unstable coast.

Next year, a full coach from London?