“More power to the protesters‘ elbows.”
Dedication has always been the hallmark of Nukewatch up and down the country, but night shift now has to be added to their skills. In 2005 the MoD began a “Continuous Running “ convoy regime, with double crews and no overnight stops. Nukewatchers quickly adapted to working long hours on a relay basis through several days and nights to be able to confirm the level of British nuclear weapons activity on our roads. Information is circulated by a number of NGOs particularly the NFLA who inform their Councillors of convoy risks in their area. This year there were loaded CR warhead convoy movements in April, May, July and November, with a major training run in January, and two week-long Exercises in East Anglia in June and October.
Nukewatch was able to track two Special Nuclear Materials cargo transfers between AWE Aldermaston and the USA, via RAF Waddington in Lincolnshire after a tip-off via CND. RAF Brize Norton is the normal base used, but it was closed for runway repairs. A Question raised in Parliament brought an acknowledgment from government minister Adam Ingram that these nuclear exchanges go by air.
In April, good press coverage was achieved by a Nukewatcher’s complaint of a Road Traffic Offence when a convoy used a weight-restricted road near Stirling. Stirling Council followed up the complaint and a Question was raised in the Scottish Parliament. Oxford City Council used Nukewatch evidence to protest to the MoD about nuclear weapons convoys coming through their City. A full-page article and supportive Editorial in the Oxford Mail concluded, “more power to the protesters‘ elbows.”
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