UPDATE ON SAVE DRURIDGE BAY CAMPAIGN and UPCOMING FUNDRAISING EVENTS
- We have had a number of small group meetings recently in relation to our case. Last week we met with our Solicitor/Advocate Paul Stookes from Cambridge together with members of Friends of the Earth from London and their Planning Consultant. We discussed how the Planning Inquiry would go as in procedure and also what witnesses we had. We then had a Site Visit the following day so our Solicitor Paul and the Planning Consultant could get to grips with where the actual opencast would be.
- There is a Pre-Inquiry Meeting which is being held on the 18th January at the Falcons Rugby Ground where our Solicitor, a couple of members of Save Druridge, Friends of the Earth representatives and their Barrister and Banks Mining and Northumberland County Council will meet to go through the procedure dates and times etc as well as raising any queries. PLEASE NOTE anyone who has already submitted an objection to the Planning Inspector will get notification from the Planning Inspectors office at a later date to see whether you wish to speak at the Inquiry. You can also register on the first day of the hearing being the 31st May to speak at the hearing. It is an 8 day hearing at the Falcons Rugby Club in Kingston Park, Newcastle.
- We are currently sorting out Expert Witnesses. These would be people with qualifications or really good experience in those subjects which Save Druridge will be speaking on at the hearing. If anyone knows of people working in the following fields who you think may be prepared to speak on behalf of Save Druridge please let us know.
hydrology noise air pollution light pollution traffic consultant ecology
- PLEASE NOTE the May elections are coming up for our local Councillors. It would not be a bad idea to put some local pressure on them stating if they are looking to get re-elected then support Save Druridge against the Opencast.
- Friends of the Earth will be mainly concentrating on Climate Change and we are not allowed to duplicate any evidence so will be working closely with them.
- A MURDER MYSTERY NIGHT at the Women’s Institute Hall, Widdrington Village. This is on Saturday 28th January at 7pm. Solve a dastardly crime, dance to some great music and enjoy lovely food (bring your own drinks). If you want to take part, please telephone Marion on 01670 760766 to reserve tickets.
- A SAVE DRURIDGE BAY CAMPAIGN ARTS EXTRAVAGANZA organised by Bethany Elen and North East Socialist Singers to be held at Gosforth Civic Theatre between 12 noon and 10pm on the 12th February. It will be lots of music, talks, poetry etc and sounds good fun. If anyone has not seen Bethany before she has an absolutely lovely voice which I can vouch for. There will also be craft stalls. For more information email firstname.lastname@example.org. Or take a look on our Druridge against Opencast Facebook page which has details of this on there.
- A BEETLE DRIVE to be held at The Drift Café, Cresswell on Friday 24th March. More details to follow.
- FINALLY SDB will be holding an Auction in April with an MGT car being auctioned with some other items.
On Friday 9th December we saw Caroline Lucas, Green Party co-leader and MP visit our corner of Northumberland. During her 2 day visit to the NE she also spoke at Durham University Union and met with Newcastle Green Party members.
Caroline took the time in her packed schedule to visit Warden to see the damage caused by Storm Desmond in Dec 2015 and the efforts of local people to repair and protect themselves from further damage. She spoke of the need for more funding from government towards Natural Flood Management and other sustainable methods.
Caroline also took the chance to speak about the recent motion to push for more parliamentary oversight of the Brexit process and lamented the Labour amendment which commits to a too short time frame and no guarantee of a detailed plan from government.
Caroline was happy to support Tynedale Green Party candidate Wesley Foot who is standing in Humshaugh ward for the County Council elections next May. TGP members enjoyed a buffet lunch at The Boatside and a chance for an informal chat with Caroline who was always patient and friendly. Wesley presented her with a birthday card from TGP and she was even serenaded by member Veronica Perrin!
Many thanks to David Taylor who came to photograph the event and to hexham tv for filming short interviews with Caroline and Carol, landlady of The Boatside.
Party Co Leader, Caroline Lucas, will pay a flying visit to Hexham next week after speaking in Durham on Thursday night.
Ms Lucas will visit The Boatside Inn at Warden on Friday 9th December to meet Tynedale Green Party members and local candidate Wesley Foot; she is expected to discuss how last year’s flooding affected the area and the response to her recent questions to government on funding for Natural Food Management (NFM) methods.
Warden resident Wesley Foot, who will stand as Green Party candidate in next year’s County Council Election, said: “I’m looking forward to meeting Caroline who is a much respected and hard-working MP. Among other things we’ll be talking about the potential of natural flood management methods in this region to prevent the kind of flooding we seem to experience in Warden on a regular basis. NFM methods are more sustainable, good value for money, prevent flooding and also benefit the natural environment in the long term. Caroline Lucas recently questioned the government over their response to last year’s flooding, reminding them of their stated support for alternative flood prevention methods .This week the government committed £15 million which is welcome but inadequate when spread across the country.”
The Green Party Co Leader will visit The Boatside in Warden between 11.30am and 1pm to see the improvements made to flood-proof the building since last year. She will then meet local Green Party members for an informal lunch.
AGM Postponed – Please note that the Tynedale Green Party AGM has been rescheduled and will now take place at Hexham Community Centre, 6.30 p.m. on Friday 13th January