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Jul 27, 2009

In some 36 hours I was supposed to take the train to attend the Big Green Gathering (BGG). It was going to be my holiday, but I was also invited to speak twice: on women & environment and on community engagement in environment.... but yesterday the organisers were forced to cancel the event due to "serious concerns from Mendip District Council and emergency services about public safety and possible crime and disorder". Mendip Council had threatened BGG with a High Court injunction which BGG was bound to lose as it was on a technicality of not having road closure permit, which relevant authority had long promised was under control. BGG had a permit for the event itself since June.

But how strange is that as a reason: the event has taken place since 1994 without ever any problem, it is an event "for people who care about health, the environment, sustainability, our children's future and life in general" and just 15-20,000 people attending (while Glastonbury - which takes place 'next door' to BGG is the "largest greenfield music and performing arts festival in the world", had 134,000 people attend in 2008 and took place again just last month, with lots of drink and 24hr music, NOT the idea of family event like BGG).

It seems political reasons are a more accurate an article in The Times, The Guardian (plus a blog note from one of their editors and a contribution on 'Comment is free': "being green is no crime") or Weekly SchNEWS.

So: green (environmentalists), the new red (communists)? It's quite worrying (and disappointing).

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Posted: Jul 27, 2009 11:57am


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Rianne ten Veen
, 3
Solihull, United Kingdom
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