28th Jan 2024: HXR join Dirty Water protest, North Devon

Posted by: Hils - Posted on:

On Saturday morning, in Barnstaple, HXR members joined over 170 people from 27 North Devon organisations to protest about the pollution of our rivers and seas. There was a march round town and speeches in the High Street highlighting the failure of our privatised water company and this government (including both our MPs) to tackle the problem, including the regular pumping of raw sewage into North Devon waters as well as agricultural runoff. A mock presentation of a blue plaque award took place outside MP Selaine Saxby’s office – she has voted to continue dumping raw sewage in our rivers and seas for another 15 years. South West Water was also slated for their misinformation and lack of investment whilst their directors took home huge bonuses.

The identity of North Devon is tied to its beautiful rivers and coasts. Dirty water is a problem not only for our tourist industry but also the health of locals. One participant told of how he picked up a viral infection while surfing and spent 11 days in hospital in a serious condition.

This event was one of many happening all over the country as part of a national XR campaign. Other organistions taking part included:

Surfers Against Sewage
Local Facebook bodyboarding group
Blue Tits, Devon Belles and Westward Ho Dippers swimming groups,
Plastic Free North Devon
Lynn Climate Action
Sustainable Chumleigh
Extinction Rebellion North Devon
N Devon and Torridge Climate Forum
Climate and Ecological Emergency Bill group
Town and Parish councillors from: Braunton, Barnstaple, Northam, Bideford, Ilfracombe and Lynton
District councillors from both N Devon and Torridge
Save Our Hospital Services
The Green Party
The Labour Party
SERA Devon and Somerset
The Liberal Democrats
Compass N Devon and N Devon for Europe