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Kila Delivers Anti-Shell Message at Topaz (Shell) Stage

category galway | rights, freedoms and repression | feature author Tuesday May 26, 2009 22:39author by hatboyauthor email galwayshelltosea at riseup dot net Report this post to the editors

Galway Shell to Sea infiltrates Topaz sponsored event

featured image
Kila sing it loud and clear: Shell to Sea

Shell to Sea Galway pulled off a great publicity stunt last Saturday on the first night of the Galway ocean races of which Topaz is a main sponsor. The aim was to inform people that Topaz is Shell and encourage people to boycott Topaz. They arranged for a Kila member to wear a Shell to Sea t-shirt while playing on the Topaz mainstage, handed out fliers in the crowd and had several anti-shell/anti-topaz banners in the area. One banner which read 'Let's Do It Galway, Send Shell to Hell,' was unfurled at the foot of the stage while Kila was playing, and when security attempted to take the banner from Shell to Sea and Climate Camp activists in the crowd, a Kila member came down from the stage, retrieved the banner from the security guard, and put it up on stage for everyone to see!

Kila, who have supported the Shell to Sea campaign in the past, were contacted by Galway Shell to Sea earlier in the week to inform them that the main stage at the Galway Volvo Ocean Race is the Topaz stage and that Topaz is essentially Shell. They were surprised, and two of them agreed to wear the 'Shell to Sea' t-shirts as a gesture to show they were still supporting the campaign. It was not part of the plan to put the banner on stage. That was just a spontaneous act against Shell's attempt to use Kila as part of their 'image boosting' campaign. The Topaz company was set up in Ireland so Shell, Statoil and Marathon could continue making a profit in Ireland while side-stepping the negative publicity surrounding their exploitation of the people and land in Mayo. Topaz presents a 'clean green' image, and may sponsor free stages at corporate events, but people will not forget that they are directly responsible for endangering the lives of Irish people and robbing Irish natural resources.

Activists from Shell to Sea and Climate Camp came together on Saturday and started out passing out fliers explaining the Topaz-Shell connection. Some fliers gave a brief history of the Shell to Sea campaign, aimed at those unfamiliar with it, and some promoted the Rossport Solidarity Camp Gathering which is happening this coming weekend, 29 May- 1 June and will include workshops, tours and history of the area, music and more. The activists spoke with people in the crowd before and after the gig, generally receiving a good response from people. They also brought a banner reading 'Let's Do It Galway, Send Shell to Hell,' and unfurled it once Kila had played a couple songs. The security guards were not happy about this, and reached into the crowd attempting to take the banner. A Kila member stepped down off of stage and saved the banner, handing it to someone backstage to hoist behind the band where all could see. The Topaz stage managers were furious, but it's been reported that they were prevented from removing the banner by a sympathetic backstage band manager. Soon after the banner went up, the lead singer made a point to take his shirt off in the middle of the gig and put on a DIY 'Shell to Sea' t-shirt. Some activists heard him mention 'our friends up at rossport' and possibly a 'shell to hell' battle cry, but this is not clear. In any case, Kila members hoisted the anti-Shell banner and put across a clear anti-Shell message on what was essentially a Shell stage. After the gig, one of the band members returned the banner to a Climate Camp activist so that it could be used again.

Galway Shell to Sea and Climate Camp activists also dropped three other banners in the surrounding area during the gig, from apartments and a nearby carpark. One of the banners read 'PROTECT IRISH NATURAL RESOURCES, STOP SHELLS RAPE OF ROSSPORT', with an anti-shell logo on it. The overall message was to support the Shell to Sea campaign in all ways possible and to act in solidarity with a community under siege in Erris, County Mayo, by boycotting Topaz, Shell, Statoil and Marathon worldwide!
So long as work continues on this project, so will the resistance!

Related Link:

Caption: Video Id: yv0zugBmZWo&feature= Type: Youtube Video
When security tried to take a banner from Shell to Sea and Climate Camp activists at the front of the crowd, one of the band members intervened to save the banner and put it up on stage, where all the crowd could see it!

Caption: Video Id: XrDiiiPzqtw&feature= Type: Youtube Video
Lead singer of Kila sports a fashionable DIY shell to sea t-shirt on the Topaz stage at the Galway ocean races. He made a point to take his shirt off halfway through the gig and put on the shell to sea t-shirt.

author by Margaretpublication date Mon May 25, 2009 22:00author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Thank you Galway,thankyou KILA..People of conscience can make difference.We are Irish citizens trying to protect our health and safety,our Human Rights and civil liberties.There is no profit for IRISH people with this GAS/OIL "DEA"..Our constitution states clearly that our natural resources belong to the IRISH PEOPLE .We are guardians of our childrens future and the environment.

author by Sergeipublication date Mon May 25, 2009 22:46author email Sergeirichard at hotmail dot comauthor address author phone Report this post to the editors

The rumour going round here in Galway is that Kila were consequently refused payment for the gig - and their hotel rooms. Does anyone know the truth of it?

author by Mark Springpublication date Mon May 25, 2009 22:53author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Good on ya Galway Shell to Sea! Adelante wit da struggle! Everyone who reads this, if you like what you see, git yo asses to Rossport this weekend or any weekend and see more! This is action for cultural freedom, this is the real life that nourishes humans and not the consumer life that shrivels the soul!

I'm starting to think that the Rossport resistance is the best thing to happen to Ireland since the foundation of this often-bloody awful state. Ghandi, King, Freire and Davitt are alive and well and they walk the roads of Rossport!

author by Eanna Dowlingpublication date Mon May 25, 2009 23:47author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I'm not surprised at the Kila action, and I'd be interested in hearing which member of the band wore the T shirt and who intervened with the banner. Not only are they possibly the best band in the world, Kila have individually and collectively got involved in issues that affect them, with no fear. They've done tons of benefits over the years. An independent DIY outfit, Kila have brought the Irish language and music to a new audience. Full respect. Rossa and Ronan did great work for Tara.

But what will the Big Bag of Sticks do when they play the festival? Inspired by the Levellers, they were a force of nature in their prime. A Galway based band, I'd be interested in hearing how they balance the sponsorship of the gig with the ethos of their audience, who I imagine, would be sympathetic to the people of Rossport.

It's well for you Galwegians, to be blessed with these fine corporations bringing such quality free entertainment to the masses. And doubly blessed that the musicians involved are not just taking the shilling, but are using the gig to entertain all comers, and to stand up for the people of Rossport.

author by galwayshelltoseapublication date Tue May 26, 2009 01:20author email galwayshelltosea at riseup dot netauthor address author phone Report this post to the editors

enjoy photos





author by Ken Leepublication date Tue May 26, 2009 07:21author address author phone Report this post to the editors



author by MacEpublication date Tue May 26, 2009 10:27author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Absolutely mighty. Fair play to the lads in Kíla and well done to Galway S2S for organisation.

author by Eanna Dowlingpublication date Tue May 26, 2009 17:06author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Excellent point of order Mr/Ms S2S

thanks for confirming what I already suspected

wish I was there
wish I was there
wish I was there

author by Prophetpublication date Tue May 26, 2009 18:03author address author phone Report this post to the editors

This pipeline will never be built!! The sparks of resistance will only grow stronger as the winds of change now blowing across this country fan the embers into a mighty blaze of protest.

author by galway shell to seapublication date Tue May 26, 2009 23:47author email galwayshelltosea at riseup dot netauthor address author phone 0861590934Report this post to the editors

Galway shell to sea would like to remind everyone that there is a bus going from Galway to Rossport this weekend for the camp gathering. We will leave galway Saturday 30 May at 8:30am and return to Galway on Monday 1June. Other cars and rides will be returning before then if you have to be back sooner. The bus costs 15 eur a person. Call 086 159 0934 to book your spot on the bus, NOW! (we need to confirm numbers asap.)

come to erris this weekend. feck the life festival.

author by audiencepublication date Tue May 26, 2009 23:59author address author phone Report this post to the editors

and they rocked the place!

author by Niall - Rossport Solidarity Camppublication date Wed May 27, 2009 10:47author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Heartwarming stuff and inspiring.

Come to the Camp Gathering this weekend, see here:

Draft Gathering Programme here:

Rock on.

author by Coilínpublication date Wed May 27, 2009 17:14author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Fair play dhaoibh!

Any chance ye'd come and do an encore at the Topaz station around the corner from me?

author by local residentpublication date Wed May 27, 2009 18:42author address author phone Report this post to the editors

fair play to ye galway shell to sea and to Kila..
well done!
thanks a million from the people of erris

author by Fred Johnstonpublication date Wed May 27, 2009 19:25author email sylfredcar at iolfree dot ieauthor address author phone Report this post to the editors

Nice one, all concerned. Let's get some poets and writers up there, too, next time.

author by Mark Springpublication date Wed May 27, 2009 21:00author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Hey, I see they even took to court the guy who painted rings round potholes in the Cavan roads, to try and make them safer. Talk about the criminalisation of peaceful protest! We really need a conference on this topic. How about it next year AFrI.

He was charged with defacing the road surface! har har.

Related Link:
author by galwayshelltoseapublication date Thu May 28, 2009 02:20author email galwayshelltosea at riseup dot netauthor address author phone Report this post to the editors

Hi everyone, we are sending the bus from Galway to Gathering, but there are some people who need to get back earlier than on Monday/the bus times don`t suit them from different reasons. If there are any people driving by car and willing to give a lift to someone could you please contact galway shell to sea 086 159 0934 so we could get more people up there.

author by shoegirlpublication date Thu May 28, 2009 14:21author address author phone Report this post to the editors

"Topaz is essentially Shell" . . . um . . . forgive me if I am really incorrect, but unless Shell actually bought back their retail/commercial fuel business in Ireland, is Topaz not essentially a separate company, albeit a probable supplier of Shell fuels?

Most of the senior management seem to have come from Statoil. No idea who the major investor is, but if it isn't Shell, then Topaz are not Shell. So who is the major investor in Topaz?

author by Horsemanpassingbypublication date Thu May 28, 2009 15:51author address author phone Report this post to the editors

"One of the country's largest motor fuel companies will be formed as a result of the sale. Statoil agreed to sell the business to a private consortium Topaz in June, and its backers include businessman Denis O'Brien and Galway property developer Gerry Barrett.

Statoil announced its decision to dispose of its retail and commercial fuels business in Ireland to Topaz in June of this year subject to the approval of the Competition Authority. The consideration was not disclosed."

-FinFacts Ireland website, 2007

author by galwaypublication date Fri May 29, 2009 05:49author address author phone Report this post to the editors

One source from backstage has confirmed that yes, Ronan had started to say something about 'Our friends up at Rossport' but that the sound from the microphone was cut as soon as they heard that, and that's why there was some uncertainty as to what was said.

It is still unclear as to whether or not Kila were refused payment for the stunt, but a friend of the band mentioned that 'they don't give a f***.' And it is definitely confirmed that the Topaz stage managers were FUMING after the gig 'How dare you pull this on a Topaz stage' and that sort of thing. It was also said that Kila were in fact kicked out of their hotel- or if not kicked out, told to leave and they didn't really want to stay anyway so they left.

I don't imagine any of that was meant to be kept a secret, it should probably be publicised how protective Topaz is of the Shell reputation. Kila, if you are reading this and you would like to comment, please do!

Topaz you are not welcome in our community, no matter how many free stages you provide.

author by dunkpublication date Fri May 29, 2009 14:16author address author phone Report this post to the editors

great stuff S2S Gailimh, as ever Kila not afraid to express their views and solidarity with normal irish people and irish ways.

2 quick questions, what did the Normal joe in Galway make of this stunt, has it changed their views, made anyone more pro S2S etc.

Also, was anything written in the advertiser about this, or any other local media?

keep it up

solidarity from BCN


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