Independent Media Centre Ireland

Shell to Sea halt work at Bellanaboy

category mayo | environment | news report author Friday July 13, 2007 10:15author by Shell to Sea

A number of Shell to Sea campaigners have established a non-violent blockade of the road leading to the proposed gas refinery site at Bellanaboy. Two protestors are ‘locked on’ to an immobilized vehicle, preventing access to the site.

“It is vital for the preservation of Erris and the protection of its people that all work on this destructive and exploitative project be stopped immediately. Despite a contemptible strategy by the authorities that either ignores or maliciously persecutes those opposing the project, residents remain resolute in their opposition.” says John Monaghan

This action comes in the wake of the conviction of three local residents on a charge of assault, a charge they vigorously deny. The judges’ verdict has been met with surprise and chagrin from the community.

Today Shell to Sea supporters are clearly demonstrating that they will not be deterred by Gardai violence or false imprisonment.

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author by S2Spublication date Fri Jul 13, 2007 10:28author address author phone

9.20 lock on starts with two people blocking road to site

9.35 police van arrives on scene

9.38 police attempt to move supporters from the scene but fail

9.46 2nd cop van arrives

9.48 supporters are pushed back and first aider is disallowed access

10.00 all lorries have headed back to the quarry

10.20 A doctor has been brought to the scene approximately 40 supporters are standing about seven metres away. There are an equal number of cops on the scene. The fire brigade are on their way.

author by S2Spublication date Fri Jul 13, 2007 11:06author address author phone

11.04 fire brigade have arrived on site

author by Niallpublication date Fri Jul 13, 2007 11:07author address author phone

"Today Shell to Sea supporters are clearly demonstrating that they will not be deterred by Gardai violence or false imprisonment."

Yep ... You said that right.

author by S.publication date Fri Jul 13, 2007 11:50author address author phone

Protest at site of Corrib gas terminal

Friday, 13 July 2007 11:37

Opponents of the Corrib gas project in Co Mayo are staging a further protest near the site of the planned €200m gas terminal this morning.

Members of the Shell to Sea campaign group have placed a van across the Bangor Erris-Bellanaboy road and tied themselves onto to it.

They say they have taken today's action to prevent the terminal going ahead in its present form.

They have described the project as 'destructive and exploitative' and say it should be halted.

The road on which the demonstration is taking place is now closed and traffic is being diverted away from the old Bellanaboy bridge.

Gardaí, fire service and medical personnel have gone to the scene to try to end the protest.

The gardaí say traffic to and from the terminal site is using an alternative route but they are warning that there will be disruption for the immediate future.

Related Link:
author by carron - o.s.ipublication date Fri Jul 13, 2007 11:53author address author phone

The Government/DFA has provided a budget of 25 million euro annually to have it participate in conflict resolution anywhere but in its own country. There has been a conflict in Erris about a refinery and a pipeline with Shell. A really good situation to start practising before preaching elsewhere. The conflict has now gone on for 7 years. Preaching conflict resolution seems cynical while such a scenario of submission by State physical oppression goes on and shows up the very poor quality of our human rights institutions which do not appear on the scene at all.

author by Missing the Point, RTE!publication date Fri Jul 13, 2007 11:58author address author phone

RTE, did you read the S2S statement and why not reflect it? Three local men went to prison in the last 2 days. How do you fail to connect the feeling of weak justice in the people.

author by Cork Shell to Sea'erpublication date Fri Jul 13, 2007 12:50author address author phone

but you can't speak for the rest of us. Keep up the struggle. It is not those who can inflict the most, but those who can suffer the most who will be victorious, to quote a fellow Corkman (Terence McSwiney).

author by Bikerpublication date Fri Jul 13, 2007 13:25author address author phone

The 1 O'Clock television News on RTE 1 made no mention of the latest developments at Bellanaboy, yet the short, subtitled Nuacht bulletin in Irish at the end had it as the third story in its headlines. What makes a story newsworthy in the Irish language while it is ignored in the longer English language bulletin minutes beforehand ? So not only have we Shell's government and Shell's cops but we also have Shell's TV station(s).

author by S2Spublication date Fri Jul 13, 2007 13:36author address author phone

13.00 Blockade is still in place and ten or so other locals have spontaneously blocked the only other access to the refinery. No construction vehicles can get onto the site.

author by mattipublication date Fri Jul 13, 2007 13:41author address author phone

It appears they have the story in the nuacht headlines beacuse the story is associated with a gaeltacht region. They dont preceive the story to be of national importance only regional. It's a disgrace. Aswell as that they are probably covering themselves from media ban accusations on the story by having it reported in the clinninte na nuachta

author by S2Spublication date Fri Jul 13, 2007 14:25author address author phone

14.00 Fire Brigade have dropped off several blanks of wood and have started getting their tools out -it looks like they are going to attempt to remove the two from the underside of the car, possibly by jacking up the car. The ambulance crew is on standby.

author by S2Spublication date Fri Jul 13, 2007 14:51author address author phone

14.40 fire brigade are jacking up the car - the blockade has now been going for five hours

author by S2Spublication date Fri Jul 13, 2007 15:18author address author phone

15.18 one protester has now been removed from the vehicle

author by viewerpublication date Fri Jul 13, 2007 15:21author address author phone

RTE likes to portray itself as a Public Broadcaster - it is not -
it is the Irish State Broadcaster. It operates under the Broadcasting Act.
On the occasions when it breaches this Act, even as determined by the High Court or
the Supreme Court, it is never subject to any sanction or punishment.
This means that RTE management can, when required, operate as they wish without any worry
to their pockets or their careers. How's that for accountability.

So, when you are taking on the State don't expect balance, fairness or objectivity from the State Broadcaster.

What to do.....
when your t.v. licence is up for renewal RTE/an Post will send you a reminder. They will try to force you
to renew your licence from the expiry date of your last licence. The intervening period may be days, weeks or months, if you wait for the final reminder.
You may not have been in possession of a t.v. during that period. They don't know and can't prove otherwise.
If you have not been in possession of a t.v. :-) then insist on taking out a NEW licence from today's date. This will really piss them off.

This is not an encouragement to break the law - we wouldn't want that.

Best wishes to the brave supporters of S2S. Please keep us informed.

author by S2Spublication date Fri Jul 13, 2007 15:32author address author phone

Both men have now been removed from the car

author by ccpublication date Fri Jul 13, 2007 15:45author address author phone

I know the Fire Brigade crew will once again have conducted themselves to the highest standards of professionalism.

author by S2Spublication date Fri Jul 13, 2007 15:53author address author phone

the blockade is now over. The car has been removed from the bridge

author by mattpublication date Fri Jul 13, 2007 16:15author address author phone

Surprisingly supportive article on irish times breaking news- it may be updated to be less so pretty soon but at the moment....

author by S2Spublication date Fri Jul 13, 2007 18:47author address author phone

The car/van was parked across the Ballinaboy Bridge, with 2 people locked on underneath, the fire brigade eventually jacked up the car, removed the pipe in which the men had their arms locked, and finally opened the pipe to free the 2 men.




author by S2Spublication date Fri Jul 13, 2007 22:42author address author phone

10.30pm. Over a hundred people are on site at the soon to be redundant Shell refinery site at Bellanaboy.

author by ddpublication date Fri Jul 13, 2007 22:54author address author phone

Is that MOS in the picture? Who is the other?

author by Finbarpublication date Sat Jul 14, 2007 11:05author address author phone

Fairplay to all involved in this and all the amazing and inspirational things over the last few week.

author by W. Finnerty.publication date Sat Jul 14, 2007 12:03author address author phone

"Cork Shell to Sea spokesman Ray Hanrahan said: 'While the State considers the assault of gardaí a serious criminal offence, neither the government nor the judiciary have any qualms about the violence, intimidation and lawless brutality they've unleashed upon the brave people of north-west Mayo'." (from ).

In the interests of the "common good" mentioned in Paragraph 4 of the Preamble of Bunreacht na hEireann (Constitution of Ireland), we desperately need lots more of this kind of responsible media reporting (in my view).

Some information (from way back) on the now re-emerged and deeply worrying subject of "judicial despotism", which Republic of Ireland judges appear to have got a VERY bad dose of, can be found at .

What has happened to "Doctrine of the Tripartite Division of Powers of Government" I wonder? Who has given the legal profession in the Republic of Ireland the authority to COMPLETELY abandon this core safety-mechanism, which lays at the heart of Bunreacht na hEireann?

Related link:

author by milk-tray manpublication date Sat Jul 14, 2007 14:16author address author phone

next time put the pipe inside a breeze block, it gives you an extra hour or two as the fire brigade sort out their angle grinders from their cutters. Well done everyone! olé! ruile buile! you're doing it & we can all see you doing it.

author by corked up - s2spublication date Sat Jul 14, 2007 22:15author address author phone

I am just posting a few pics that I have from the day! Its really hard to sum up in words how great the day really was. A big hurragh to the Clowns, your feather dusters startled all rank and file. Comic releif was key at times. Bob and Terrence you put it all out on that bridge yesterday, Thank you... Thank you Thank you.. was good to look at that bridge in a possitive light .Seeing as how so many have had a view of it from the gutter.. As for the 3 fishermen who were released it was a great sign of the solidarity that is felt around the country for ye. It was so great that people acted immediatly and stopped the development of shells new HGV Haulage route (I dont remember the planning for that one?) Im referring to the trucks that shell attempted to send down single passage country roads to avoid the blockade and the embarassment of being shut down for the day. The fire service were extaordinary once again. It was blindingly obvious that they know right from wrong.

and now... what's this I hear of late night mass occupations ???? to be continued..................

Ready and Waiting
Ready and Waiting

Checking for a GAS leak?
Checking for a GAS leak?

Hats off to the lads!
Hats off to the lads!

Refreshments for the crew blocking trucks on the NEW haulage route
Refreshments for the crew blocking trucks on the NEW haulage route

Their Hands were indeed tied behind their backs.. or are they paying respect?
Their Hands were indeed tied behind their backs.. or are they paying respect?

author by dunkpublication date Mon Jul 16, 2007 13:10author address author phone

the independant film made by IMC-UK activists that was on channel 4's website, more 4, then removed, now back

"Indymedia UK investigation exposing the poisoning of the Erris drinking water supply from the Corrib Gas Project, a return trip in May revealed the extent to which Mayo County Council (MCC) and Shell E & P Ireland (SEPIL) would go to hide the problem rather than deal with it."
found at

more links:
IMC UK Don’t Mention The Water report and videos:

Don't Mention The Water videos + Policing The Pollution also available on April 2007 (number 6) Reel News DVD.

More4 News video report:

well done lads for the actions
Theres rossport leaflets circulating in spanish at present around barcelona and a colorful striking poster in many social centres....

Theres also a new clown group formed here in bcn so maybe operation splish splash splosh might be coming back into play??

Talleres con Rebel Clown Army @ BCN (7,8 Julio)

Operation Splish Splash Splosh

author by 50 mega ohmpublication date Mon Jul 16, 2007 19:33author address author phone

Respect to all those who took part & attended this action for your courage & resolution - trific, grand, brave, legend!

author by Man Thrown Down the Drain 10/11/06 - ShelltoSEApublication date Tue Jul 17, 2007 16:33author address author phone

Arachne, Would you please make contact with Ed Collins, Pullothomas, Ballina, Co Mayo, as you were wondering how I was after being assaulted on the 10 Nov 06. Thank you, I would like to talk to you, Thanks again for being concerned.

author by another resisterpublication date Thu Jul 19, 2007 15:41author address author phone

Grand work indeed - keep on with the peaceful actions. Love & respect to Erris and its defenders.

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