Thursday, 25 June 2015

Last stand at The Runnymede Eco-Village.

Sometimes it seems as though everything I write about is ending - over the Magna Carta celebrations the developers got their eviction notice against the Runnymede Eco-village people at Guildford County Court.

The prospects of fighting this are very slim but at the moment the eviction has stalled because the camp took their case to the High Court on appeal. There's a delay while the judge waits for a transcript of the lower hearing.

These pictures are from last year when I was invited to visit and then did a piece. I had plans - I was going to stay over and combine giving them my support as well has having one last camping 'trip'.

It wasn't to be - my Mum was getting more ill and then I broke my back.

I'm probably idealising it all, I visited in May after all. It was beautiful.

A muddy, cold December?

The people there have been living there for the last three years. there are families and children with nowhere else to go.

There are quite vulnerable people too, everyone was welcome.

Of course, the land should never have been sold - it was ours.

Technically it belonged to Brunel University but once that meant it belonged to all of us.

Since universities were given some kind of spurious independence they have been hunting for assets to sell off; in this case an old hall of residence.

You might think that tomorrow's students would have welcomed cheap and beautiful accommodation?

That was not to be.

The residence and the sports grounds have been torn up and expensive homes built on a plot of land that overlooks historic Runnymede and Ankerwycke and should have been preserved for future generations.

The Eco-village is on the wooded slopes - unusable for development. It's just that the wealthy new owners don't want the eco-warriors living next door.

I'm very angry about it all and angry that with a broken back there's nothing I can do.

I can't even visit because the site is too steep and uneven.

So, my good wishes and solidarity to all of you.

Neil Harris
(a don't stop till you drop production)


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