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Shell compound occupied for 9 hours – third action in two days

category mayo | miscellaneous | news report author Friday June 10, 2011 16:00author by Frank Report this post to the editors

Wednesday and Thursday saw a serious of occupations and actions against the drilling compound at Aghoos in Mayo as part of the ongoing campaign against Shell. The events culminated in an eight-hour lock-on and a nine hour occupation of machinery which stopped all work for the day. Over thirty people were involved in the events.

Shell compound occupied for 9 hours – third action in two days

Yesterday, thirty activists, including an international presence, took the Shell compound at Aughoose where they are doing preparation work for the controversial pipeline that will run high pressure gas through communities in North Western Ireland. Three individuals managed to make it onto machinery while others closed the main gain with a lock-on. The result was no work done for the entire day. Five people were arrested, all of whom are now released though some have been charged.

The action was done from the Rossport Solidarity Camp which currently occupies a field on the other side of the road from where Shell are working. Planning started the night before, people wanting to build on the regular actions that have been taking place over the last few months since the camp has been in place.

On Wednesday, there had been another, shorter occupation of the site during the day. However, in the wonderful way these things happen, a second visit to the site to do reconnaissance for Thursday's protest turned into an action in its own right...

So, Thursday, 7.30am – a large group of people move across the field to the road and begin breaching the compound at numerous places. They found a large, frankly scary looking lock-on dropped off in front of the main gates, despite the presence of fifteen security guards from IRMS trying to secure the access. Two people, “Bread” & “Jam” promptly made use of this gift to attach themselves to it.

People swarmed everywhere, making good use of their access as security locked themselves down in their central compound behind lines of harris fencing, though that was no obstacle. Indeed, the only work that Shell did today was building a sorry pile of mangled fences.

Numerous people made it through the lines of guards to occupy various machinery and structures, including the roof of the portakabins. Three clambered onto the drilling and digging machinery that the days' work would have depended on. Of these, one was lied to about not being arrested on coming down so other two, who were on the sampling drill and the large digger, remained there for the next nine hours. By that time victory was clearly in the hand of the protesters and they came down of their own accord.

In all this exuberance, all bar one of the windows of the house Shell own down the road decided to shatter in solidarity.

Meanwhile, back at the main road, the campers provided support to those locked-on. Police blocked off the road. The cutting team turned up at 10.15am and after a lot of head-scratching started cutting at 11am. The god of lock-on's had provided them a fair headache and it took another four hours before they managed to extract Jam. By the time that Bread was cut-out the lock-on had been in place for eight hours.

All five people arrested were taken to Belmullet Gardai station. The two who were locked on were charged with not following police instructions and for obstruction. The other three who were on the machinery were let go without charge for that, though one was subsequently re-arrested for a previous action. Support will continue.

In all, a fantastic day out, especially with the rain holding off until the action was over.

For more information on the Rossport Solidarity Camp and the campaign against Shell see www.rossportsolidaritycamp.org

author by KatyBpublication date Sat Jun 11, 2011 00:13author address author phone Report this post to the editors

You guys kick some serious ass! thinking of you all..x

author by Macaindirpublication date Sat Jun 11, 2011 00:25author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Hey all, congrats and more power to ye!

author by Molotovpublication date Sat Jun 11, 2011 00:57author address author phone Report this post to the editors

A great report and sounds like really powerful actions! Keep it up! x

author by Pádraig Ó Gráinnepublication date Sat Jun 11, 2011 10:27author email paddygrant at gmail dot comauthor address author phone Report this post to the editors

Well done to everyone there, your diligence and strength of spirit is inspirational, I hope to get there even for a few days soon to show my solidarity with your just and righteous cause.
God Bless You All.

author by Photos by Variouspublication date Sat Jun 11, 2011 12:31author address author phone Report this post to the editors

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Shell machinery occupied for 9 hours
Shell machinery occupied for 9 hours

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8 hour lock-on infront of the Shell gates
8 hour lock-on infront of the Shell gates

author by Photos by Variouspublication date Sat Jun 11, 2011 12:36author address author phone Report this post to the editors

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Lock-on after being the cut-out
Lock-on after being the cut-out

Gardaí helping IRMS & Jim Farrell in any way they wish
Gardaí helping IRMS & Jim Farrell in any way they wish

author by Shanerpublication date Sat Jun 11, 2011 12:37author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Extraordinarily inspirational work!

I especially love the image evoked: "eople swarmed everywhere, making good use of their access as security locked themselves down in their central compound behind lines of harris fencing, though that was no obstacle. Indeed, the only work that Shell did today was building a sorry pile of mangled fences."

You are my heroes!

author by Observerpublication date Sat Jun 11, 2011 13:14author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Shell bought this house and land attached from a local landowner, Johnny McAndrew. Johnny had protested along with other locals at May County Council's efforts to widen the road there for Shell. The protest added value to Johnny's land and he sold out when the price was right for him. Shell built a road through the land and have a compound there now to build the onshore pipeline. IRMS security now have use of the house.

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author by .publication date Sat Jun 11, 2011 13:15author address author phone Report this post to the editors

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Broken window on the Shell house
Broken window on the Shell house

author by IRMS Outpublication date Sat Jun 11, 2011 13:22author address author phone Report this post to the editors

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Shell Out. IRMS Out.
Shell Out. IRMS Out.

author by Clempublication date Sat Jun 11, 2011 15:29author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Good on ya, You guys rock !!!!! Thinking of you and supporting you with my heart!! Take care x

author by Miss Ni Mhurchupublication date Tue Jun 14, 2011 23:44author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Don't give up! that's what they're waiting for. Trying to raise awareness in England atm. You have my undivided support!

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