Today hundreds of people in Bristol got the clear message- Redesign MetroBus! With colourful banners, music and a friendly atmosphere meaningful communication flowed. Many people took flyers and asked questions about the issues – which most had either not heard about before or only heard about this week due to our press coverage! Awareness raising aim – well achieved!
Local musician Dave Britton who brings us donuts today brought us the most beautiful song- written the Rising Up protective collective! He has given us copies of the words and even the tonic! Here he sings it for us,
Thanks Dave. We will be singing it this weekend during our weekend of Support & Solidarity.
After the rally some people will come up to the site in Stapleton – there will be food, tea and songs with the folks from the Community Folk Choir.
SOLIDARITY SUNDAY – call out to all those who support us but not been up to the action site to come and join us! Show your support, spend time on the land, find out more about the cause and take part in some interesting activities such as singing, wood work and climbing.
Lastly…THOUGHTFUL FRIDAY yet more donations including a poignant song – to be posted up soon, thermal underwear, worlds best cake ever ( lots of it!), a ton of food from Kebele, an axe and and a haul of parsnips and carrots from an allotment holder who would lose his allotment if the road went through! We are eating from some if the best soil in the country and feeling very loved!
(Click above for Bristol Post’s take on todays actions and comedy pic – create your own caption!)
We went along to take part in the tree planting and to also pass on a letter with some serious requests to the Mayor & Secretary of the Environment, food & rural affairs – as it seemed relevant & a poignant moment.
We did gatecrash, but did nothing to scare the children at all. We are doing what we are doing for the children of today and tomorrow! Our issues are local, national and global and there is nothing narrow about what we are doing – quite the reverse. But maybe some are too blinkered to see that. Demonising/putting us down will not change this. The Rising up spokesperson only wanted 30 seconds to speak and pass on the letters. This was denied. We will leave it to you to make judgement on the comments / actions!
Apologies if we did make any kids feel bad – we only requested a dignified 30 seconds ! We ask that the voice of the community is respected, listened and responded to.
Yesterday we had a really touching visit from the gentleman who used to lease one of the small holdings on the site next to Feed Bristol. He was served his notice to quit over a year ago despite having worked the land – which supported him and his family for around 40 years! This denied his daughter her legacy of taking it over – something she said she would have loved to have done. They came with photos to show us what it used to look like, stories about how fertile the soil was ( this is on the infamous Blue Finger!!) and again shared their supportive words for our cause! Thanks so much for sharing, it was really touching!
A great day on site – wonderful community spirit emerging. Again visits from the wider community bearing positive messages. Today our most heartfelt supporter was a local woman who was 96 years old! She said she thought what we were doing was great! Unfortunately we missed the photo opportunity with her.
The woodland was full of birds today and our resident robin was hopping around having a fine time. One of our tree protectors did get some great photos whilst trying to photograph the bluetits already looking for nesting places. No birds in shot but lovely birds eye view from paradise…unpaved upon!
Do come up to the site – there is a positive and constructive atmosphere and we need all the support we can get. We have been overwhelmed by the positive response and gratitude shown by the local and wider community.
Tree felling works on this wildlife and food-growing haven had been scheduled to start on Monday (2nd Feb). Due to the presence of people in the trees and on the ground this has been disrupted.
Today approx. 100 people, including families, children and elderly people from the local community visited the site. Many of these expressed their support and thanks offering donations of food and provisions.
Mike Akers, a local resident said:
“I wholeheartedly support your campaign to prevent the Stapleton allotments being built on. …I’m afraid I’m too old to be suspended from a tree, but I will try and support your efforts as best I can with some armchair eco warrior-ism”
We are still awaiting the response from Bristol City Council to Freedom of Information request on various planning details. Further legal issues are being looked into. In the meantime the group urges decision makers within the West of England Partnership to reconsider their misguided decision to pave over paradise.
A huge thank you for all the support and donations so far. Keep them coming!
Thanks to all those who came down to Stapleton today. The trees are doing well!
In the end tree protectors stayed high in the trees, whilst the Imbolc celebration took place with around 80-100 people taking part in a meaningful ceremony giving thanks and recognition to the land, the life it sustains and our intent to protect it. The police numbers dwindled and some security appear to have been posted for the evening/night.
There appears to be some legal confusion over the boundary of the allotments and Feed Bristol small holding – where the trees are positioned which also adds to the already dubious planning application/s legality.
What next? We are stepping up the action and focussing on our our priority aim to protect the trees and land in Stapleton allotments and small holdings.
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Your presence and support are much needed in this moment and we are calling out to people to come to the Stapleton smallholdings site – by Feed Bristol (Frenchay Park Road BS16 1HB) whenever they can. On Monday please come from 6am onwards ( or earlier if you can!) – we anticipate an early start to the days activities.
There will be information on arrival, bring good energy and motivation, hot drinks and food, music, songs and good cheer! Wrap up warm and don’t forget your camera!
Well, things have started early! Today at 2pm today (Sunday 1st) a group of bailiffs and police came and evicted people from a piece of land by Stapleton Allotments – the site where development is due to begin.
However 6 activists got into the trees – high up and stayed there! Some of them are still there now and intend to be there all night.
We then had our planned Imbolc celebration – with more people than we would have had – and the police and security stayed on the other side of the trees ( they are on the boundary with Feed Bristol). It was all rather surreal and we are expected more reinforcements tomorrow….so it has begun!
So far there is no evidence that the conditions set in the planning permission have been met … we need as many peaceful souls there as possible to so they know just how many of us care …
You may be familiar with this: “Only when the last tree has died, and the last river has been poisoned, and the last fish has been caught, will you realize that you cannot eat money.” – American Indian proverb
We recast it thus:
“Only when the last tree has been felled and the last crumb of soil has been paved over will we realise that we need local food and wildlife habitat more than commuter bus routes” Rising up proverb
STOP PRESS! Tree felling set to start Monday on Bristol prime agricultural land and wildlife haven in Stapleton – home to Feed Bristol and Stapleton Allotments.This work is planned to make way for massive soil works and then road building.
Despite tireless work by community food activists over the years, Bristol’s real ‘green capital’ is at very real risk of being irreversibly destroyed at the hands of Bristol City Council/West Of England Partnership – all for an unnecessary MetroBus road
Stay tuned to Facebook for more information…very very soon!!
WHAT CAN YOU DO MEANWHILE?
1) Help protect the land: THE LAND NEEDS YOU!
Email email@example.com to find out more about how to help protect the land at this stage. We have coordinated working groups working on various areas from
Awareness raising & publicity
Political & Financial
We are Rising Up in outrage at the proposals to build Bristol MetroBus feeder roads across allotments and wild-flower meadows in Bristol’s Blue Finger – prime growing land and home to Feed Bristol.
This precious and unique resource is being attacked in order to save an estimated three and a half minutes off a half hour journey. And that is the most optimistic best estimate that the proponents have been able to come up with. 210 seconds less spent relaxing and enjoying the journey to enable the traveller to hurtle into the future slightly earlier and in doing so destroy something that has a value beyond time and money.
Join us to protect real Green Capital in Bristol. How can those who are proud of our role as Europe’s Green Capital this year be anything other than outraged at this squandering of environmental capital for mere presumed economic gain.