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A few days of struggle in North West Mayo

category mayo | environment | news report author Friday July 22, 2005 18:23author by Terry - Shell to Seaauthor email info at shelltosea dot com Report this post to the editors

Photos from the last week in Erris and Ballina..

Sligo Farmer Makes His Stand At Ballina March 16/07/05
Sligo Farmer Makes His Stand At Ballina March 16/07/05

Related Link: http://www.shelltosea.com

A Clear Message at Ballina Demo 16/07/05
A Clear Message at Ballina Demo 16/07/05

The Camp in Glengad - Adjoining the Site where the Pipeline is to hit land
The Camp in Glengad - Adjoining the Site where the Pipeline is to hit land

After a Hard Day's Work
After a Hard Day's Work

Entrance to the Tideway Compound in Glengad
Entrance to the Tideway Compound in Glengad

author by Terry - Shell to Seapublication date Fri Jul 22, 2005 18:29author email info at shelltosea dot comReport this post to the editors

More Photos...

Garda at the entrance to the Ballinaboy Refinery construction site
Garda at the entrance to the Ballinaboy Refinery construction site

The Convergence Centre at the picket of the main gate at Ballinaboy
The Convergence Centre at the picket of the main gate at Ballinaboy

These Iggy Madden Lorries Which are to Carry Peat Away From Ballinaboy Have Been Unable to Move Since the Rossport Five Were Jailed
These Iggy Madden Lorries Which are to Carry Peat Away From Ballinaboy Have Been Unable to Move Since the Rossport Five Were Jailed

Likewise with this Roller...
Likewise with this Roller...

Ballinaboy - A Shut Down Construction Site
Ballinaboy - A Shut Down Construction Site

Related Link: http://www.shelltosea.com
author by Terry - Shell to Seapublication date Fri Jul 22, 2005 18:34author email info at shelltosea dot comReport this post to the editors

..and a few more...

Putting together the Marque at camp in Rossport
Putting together the Marque at camp in Rossport

puttingtogetherthemarque2.jpg

Finally it is up...
Finally it is up...

Public-Private Partnership in Glengad - One is on 8.20 an hour and the other on maybe 3 times more
Public-Private Partnership in Glengad - One is on 8.20 an hour and the other on maybe 3 times more

Related Link: http://www.shelltosea.com
author by Terry - Shell to Seapublication date Fri Jul 22, 2005 20:41author email info at shelltosea dot comReport this post to the editors

Since the 19th of June all deliveries of construction materials to the Sicim-Roadbridge compound at Rossport have been halted.

Since the 30th of June that compound has been closed to engineers, managers, white collar workers and all other employees of Sicim and Roadbridge

The Rossport compound is the base of operations for the construction of the over land pipelines.

Installation of the pipelines was due to begin on the 25th of February. It hasn’t.

Pipelines, as this includes the gas pipeline, and one for waste, and another for hydraulic fluid and another for electric cables.

Since the 30th of June pickets, sometimes numbering in the hundreds, have closed down the refinery construction site at Ballinaboy, which is effectively the only part of the on shore development that any work has been done on.
That work has been merely the removal of peat to the peat storage facility at Srahmore.

Once we get into late Autumn, due to climatic conditions, or rain in English, and geologic conditions, better known as bog, major construction work will have to cease.

Pickets are placed at gates one and two at Ballinaboy, and the compound at Rossport.

The solidarity camp has a presence in both Rossport and Glengad.

Glengad is the location of the landfall, that is, where the sea pipelines come on land, the Tideway compound there has yet to be built. Construction was due to start there on the 1st of June. Glengad is divided from Rossport by a large expanse of water.

The Solidarity Camp has thus far included people from Mayo, Holland, London, the North of England, Cork, Dublin, Kilkenny, Galway, Antrim, Kildare, Tipperary, Austria, Louth, Wales and probably from other places that I forget. Some come for a few days, some for a few months, all of us have been made to feel very welcome.
Food donations have come from as far away as Roscommon.
We have been picketing the compound at Rossport, and, when we have time, doing some secretarial work for the campaign and some gardening or farm work for locals who are busy with campaigning. We are also keeping a watch on the site at Glengad.

On Thursday the 14th the much-heralded increased Garda presence came into effect, and is only noticeable in view of their hitherto marked absence.
At the moment each site has two Garda, all uniformed but in unmarked cars, often quite flashy ones, they are in a very cosy relationship with Brendan Gilmore security usually sharing the latter’s facilities.
On Monday the 18th at Rossport compound we were ready for the ending of Shell’s supposed cessation of construction operations.
A few engineer types arrived in the early morning, but the more interesting developments took place at 10.30 a.m.
At 10.25 a.m. 3 Garda arrived in an unmarked 05-D-12611 reg. car, and five minutes later top boy Roadbridge engineer, the sour faced never smiling and usually never speaking Kevin Houlihan, came on the scene.
Kevin was positively begging to get into the compound to clear out materials, such as the planks which make the road which is to go alongside the pipelines, and which were apparently needed at a site in Galway, such is the world shortage of wood.
Kevin grew progressively more frustrated in his search for a leader with which to negotiate before finally, fruitless, turned in vain to the Garda.
The Garda told him that they were not taking part in any negotiations, but that the matter was between him and the picketers and eventually, after much prodding they told him to contact their superiors and contact Shell.
The scene was set for the next day, Tuesday the 19th, the one calendar month anniversary of the day things really started to go wrong for Kevin and his colleagues.
See: http://www.indymedia.ie/newswire.php?story_id=70426

At 07.49 a.m. some engineers arrived and were not allowed in, they arrived later at 08.00 a.m. with a superior and were still not allowed in. At 08.26 a.m. Kevin comes back, this time with two Scania low-loader trucks hired from Careys Plant Hire (097 83018). One was empty and on the other a tractor with forklift and telescopic arm.
In true Rossport fashion they were turned around and went right back out the way they came in. Kevin looked, in the words of one local resident, so upset that you would think he owned the company.

I’ve been asked to include some amusing anecdotes from the frontlines…
Special mention must go to the Garda at Ballinaboy on Tuesday morning who asked me when the trucks, that is the trucks hired by Shell, were going to start moving out again..but nothing equals the security guard who came up to three hairy mollies, as us campers are affectionately termed around here (perhaps oblivious to the very clean cut types among our numbers), and asked us where he was supposed to be stationed.
Capping it all is the bizarre case of the flying Scotsman aka Rob Roy, who turned up at the Rossport compound gate with a green suit, kilt and full “traditional” scotch costume, complete with mullet, with bag pipe music blearing from the stereo of his green car and bollox about 800 years of oppression blearing from his mouth, when it wasn’t begging to get into the compound. He had to get into the site to get his medicine, apparently.

Related Link: http://www.shelltosea.com
 
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