On Monday 4 October 2010, activists from the Stop Nuclear Network in the UK blockaded the entrance to Hinkley Point Nuclear Station in Somerset. Hinkley Point is one of the sites where EDF wants to build new nuclear power stations in Britain, and very likely the first one. At present, there are two reactors: Hinkley Point A, which is being decommissioned, and Hinkley Point B, which is still producing electricity.
An eyewitness report: To block traffic onto the site, four activists lay in the road locked-on together using metal and plastic tubes. The action started at 6.30am before the workers shift change could happen. It took a while for the Security and Nuclear Police to respond and when they did they just closed the gate. Not long after that we could hear the public address system going 'lock down lock down lock down', so we had succeeded in disrupting the running of the Station.
By 7am there was a long tail back of workers' cars and delivery trucks, as there is only one road into Hinkley, so they weren't going anywhere. When the local Avon and Somerset police liaison officer arrived he seemed sympathetic to why we were there and asked if we had any demands. Besides shutting down Hinkley B, we did ask to speak with the Manager of Hinkley B and the Manager for the proposed Hinkley C. They eventually arrived, and a slightly heated debate took place over the issues nuclear waste and the proposed building of Hinkley C, being the first EPR Reactors that EDF want to build here in the UK. At 10.30 we decided to end our Blockade which was the first time a action of this type had ever happened at Hinkley and it won't be the last especially if EDF are granted planning permission some time in 2011.
Even before EDF has secured planning permission for Hinkley Point C, the company wants to begin with 'enabling works', which has upset the local community. Nikki, a Bridgwater Mum said: "From this autumn on, EDF wants to dynamite and bulldoze 435 acre of green fields - habitats for badgers, bats, and other wildlife, and in close proximity to Bridgwater Bay, which is a sanctuary for thousands of waders, ducks, and other sea birds. It is a joke to think this land could be restored - as EDF claims - should Hinkley C not be built." "If EDF wants to nuke the climate and the planet, the nonviolent resistance is not just an option, but a duty - at Sizewell, and here at Hinkley Point", says Nicola Deane from Suffolk.
To resist EDF's plans for nuclear expansion, not only here at Hinkley Point, but also at Sizewell, Bradwell, Hartlepool, and Heysham, the Stop Nuclear power Network is calling for a boycott of EDF.
The Stop Nuclear Power Network is a UK-based non-hierarchical grassroots network of groups and individuals taking action against nuclear power and its expansion and supporting sustainable alternatives. We encourage and seek to facilitate nonviolent direct action, as well as more conventional forms of campaigning.
A national gathering of the Stop Nuclear Power Network will take place in Bristol on, Saturday 23 to Sunday 24 October. The weekend is to meet people from your region and from around the country who are taking action against nuclear power. Make plans together and build solidarity with people who live next door to Hinkley Point. Crash space available on a dry, warm and quiet floor space. If you need a bed, please get in contact ASAP and we'll try and help you out. Email: nonewnuclear [at] aktivix.org
For more information on the campaign to boycott EDF, see http://boycottedf.org.uk
Source and contact: Stop Nuclear Power Network (SNPN), c/o 5 Caledonian Road, London N1 9DX United Kingdom