Protests Lead To Nuclear Re-Think

Article from THE KESWICK REMINDER 27th April 2012

A public outcry has led Keswick Town Council to agree to reconsider its vote on government plans to site an underground nuclear repository in West Cumbria.

Dozens of local residents turned up at last Thursday evening’s annual parish meeting to voice their concerns about safety over the controversial plan because of what they regard as the unsuitability of the local geology.

At a previous meeting Town Councillors had voted 6-5 on the casting vote of Chairman and Mayor Councillor Andrew Lysser not to oppose the plan.

The objectors, who also claimed that the potential jobs boost had been exaggerated, said they were prepared to call for a referendum if the Council had refused to reconsider the issue.

However, after listening to the objectors, the Council agreed to reconsider the vote at its next meeting on Thursday 17th May, when the issue will again be debated.

Speaking afterwards, the opponents’ spokeswoman Ann Martin said: “It was a great moment when Councillor Lysser, who’d had the casting vote to support the nuclear reopository last time, became one of the three councillors we required to re-consider the issue. Out of 34 councils who have voted (on this issue), only Millom, Brigham and Keswick are in support.”

Councillor David Etherden, who had voted in favour of the nuclear repository last month, said he wanted to examine the scheme. He felt it would bring a much-needed jobs boost to an area suffering from a declining population: “Ninety-five precent of our local kids leave Keswick because there is no work.”

He said it was projected that the 11 secondary schools currently in West Cumbria would fall to three in 10 years, adding: “I am not prepared to lose Keswick School.”

But his comments prompted a reaction from the public gallery, with a shout of: “We don’t want a radioactive dump underneath us.”

Local resident *Keith Richardson countered: “As a Lakelander I am very proud of this area and support it being a World Heritage Site. But it won’t help our case if we have a nuclear waste repository underneath us. That (tourism) is where jobs are going to come from”.

Councillor Lysser said he was happy for the issue to be reviewed
Note: Many thanks to Mary for sending Radiation Free Lakeland a hard copy of this important Keswick Reminder article to post online

* Keith Richardson



radiation free lakeland – contact: 015395 63671
or email:

Keekle Head in Cumbria is being targeted for a nuclear dump – this is not
the BIG geological dump – but another large development which plans to
take the higher end of low level/intermediate radioactive wastes.

Quite rightly Cumbria County Council is OPPOSING this development –
in contrast to their bizarre ‘expression of interest’ in a BIGGER
geological dump.

PLEASE WRITE TO CCC Development Committee supporting Cumbria County
Council’s opposition to the plan for Keekle Head to become a nuclear dump.
Even if you have written before on this – another letter/email/telephone call reinforcing the
point would be GREAT!

EVEN GREATER would be if you could register before 1st May (this meeting has been postponed so many times – and now the notice is a few days!!!)
to speak opposing this plan – or come along and support those speaking.

Keekle Head App No. 4/10/9001/0F2
Development Control Team
Cumbria County Council
County Offices
Busher Walk
01539 713066

FOR INFO: Letter from Radiation Free Lakeland below

RADIOACTIVE WASTES Keekle Head -App No. 4/10/9001/0F2 Date Received
18/01/2010 – application for nuclear waste disposal

We would like to restate our support for Cumbria County Council’s
position: which is opposition to radioactive wastes being spread around
Following dangerous deregulation of the nuclear industry, private
companies such as Endecom are increasingly looking to pick up government
contracts to get shot of nuclear wastes in order to clear the decks for
new build.

The bizarre reason Endecom gives for it not being possible to site a low
level nuclear dump at Sellafield: “there is insufficient space on the site
to construct a VLLW Disposal Facility and.. large areas of contaminated
land on the site would have to be excavated to develop a VLLW Facility”.
(Endecom: Addendum Environmental Statement 2011)

In other words Sellafield’s 6 mile square site is too small and way too
contaminated for a low level dump! We note that Endecom have replied to
Cumbria County Council’s concern about the waste being below the
watertable by saying the waste will now be above the watertable.
(Endecom: Addendum Environmental Statement 2011). This is just as likely
to leach into the water table. Water breaches from nuclear repositories
are inevitable as experience has shown elsewhere. The nuclear
contamination makes freshwater invalid.

Bizarrely there has been no health impact assessment carried out by
Endecom despite the plan to dump one million cubic metres of nuclear waste
-12 lorry loads a day- over many decades at Keekle Head.

In our previous objection we strongly advised Cumbria County Council to
look into a legal challenge to the dumping of nuclear wastes from Chapel
Cross and other nuclear plants in Lakeland landfill and to strongly resist
all nuclear waste in landfill. We are delighted that steps are being
taken by the Council to look into a legal challenge.

We now urge Cumbria County Council to:
a. stick to their opposition to the Keekle Head proposal.
b. ask for a detailed health impact assessment to be carried out
independently or at least in collaboration with for example the Low Level
Radiation Campaign or Nuclear Waste Advisory Associates.
c. Lobby government to revoke the “exempt” law allowing HVLLW (and more)
into what is effectively landfill.

Yours sincerely,


Jamie Reed MP opposes (bizarrely supports the BIG geological dump)


Keekle Head

Radioactive Waste Challenge set before candidates

Legal Challenge

Examples of nuclear ‘repository’ leaks (there too many more!)

North Lancashire Tourism would be impacted by Geological Dump

Managing Radioactive Wastes Safely
“What do you think of it so far? RUBBISH!”

VIRTUAL LANCASTER – the popular Community Resources and Visitor Guide says:

“The knock on effects for the North Lancashire visitor industry are serious. Being a gateway to Wastwater is attractive. Being a gateway to ‘Nuclear Wastewater’ less so.

From the nuclear industry’s point of view, which its executives are committed to support, a disposal ‘solution’ for long-term deadly toxic waste is the key to any future nuclear development. The current priority is simply to drive through the fresh public consultation stage with their plan intact. Their problem seems to be how to prevent the public from actually noticing that Lakeland, a precious national asset, is at stake. The LDNPA is the Lake District planning authority. Its support is vital and its chair Baron Clark is in a key position to oversee delivery of that support. Their response is clear: ‘Stop telling anyone’.

The Labour Government’s previous nuclear consultation on building a new generation of reactors in the UK was declared a ‘sham excercise’ in a High Court ruling in 2007. For the Lake District National Park planning authority to be clearly advocating media deception of the public in the debate over the siting of the GDF under the National Park certainly suggests that yet another ‘sham exercise’ is under way.”



The BBC has given scant coverage of the Government plan for a nuclear geological dump in Cumbria The tone of programmes that have been aired have taken their cue directly from the PR surrounding the plan and the recent You and Yours broadcast was no exception. Only one anti-dump campaigner was interviewed alongside three shills with intimate connections to the Government quango ‘Managing Radioactive Wastes Safely.’ There is more than one group opposing this plan- in fact there are an increasing number of groups opposing, including all those supposedly ‘volunteer’ and ‘nuclear compliant’ communities surrounding Sellafield.

Remembering Chernobyl – Giant Postcard to the Lake District National Park

Postcards to the Lake District National Park
Postcards to the Lake District National Park
The Lake District National Park = "a warm welcome"
The Lake District National Park = "a warm welcome"

Today in Kendal anti-nuclear groups, Cumbria and Lancashire area CND and Radiation Free Lakeland remembered the Chernobyl disaster.

People in Kendal were keen to sign a giant postcard to the Lake District National Park Authority who have given the thumbs up to a giant nuclear dump or two under Cumbria and in just one and half hours 90 people wrote to the National Park saying:

To the Lake District National Park Authority,

Nuclear Wastes Deep Under Lakeland?

‘Belarus’ means ‘Beautiful Land.’ Today is the anniversary of the Chernobyl disaster in that beautiful land. The Lake District is a beautiful land too but that is no protection from radiation. Eminent scientists are warning that in our lifetime:
“Emplacement of hot wastes will force rock to expand, with the strong probability that new fractures will be created. The fractures can allow radioactive gas to rapidly leak to the surface. Land users and housing at the land surface will be uplifted”
Prof Stuart Hazseldine OBE

Please reconsider your support for this plan and instead support all those communities in the Lake District who are calling for the ‘geological disposal’ plan to be scrapped.


Cumbria Association of Local Councils says NO to Geological Dump

No more Cons..

Hurrah – Some of the ‘Partnership Patsys’ are stirring from their sleep walk along the toxic steps to a geological dump!

The Cumbria Association of Local Councils has changed its complicit support from “neutrality” to:

The conclusions of the Partnership about the possible suitability of West Cumbria’s geology have been significantly influenced by CoRWM’s (Committee on Radioactive Waste Management) view that “there is presently no credible scientific case to support the contention that all of West Cumbria is geologically unsuitable”. However, CALC finds this reliance on the absence of a negative unsatisfactory because it avoids the key question – how good are the prospects of finding a suitable site? At CALC’s instigation the Partnership asked the NDA in early 2011 to undertake some work to explain why the prospects of finding a site for a GDF in West Cumbria are sufficiently good to justify proceeding further. In the event the NDA’s ability to fulfil this brief was constrained by a restriction placed on it using West Cumbria specific data and research in advance of a formal Decision to Participate. As a consequence the resulting NDA report is limited in its usefulness.

So the submissions that there is no prospect of finding a site (e.g. Professors Smythe and Haszeldine) or that the probability of finding a site is low (e.g. McDonald and Knipe –Nirex Inquiry inspector and assessor) are the dominant opinions in the public domain. In CALC’s view the evidence in the public domain and available for public discussion points to the conclusion that the prospects of finding a suitable site in West Cumbria are too poor to justify proceeding”.

Note: CoRWM

Link to Full CALC position here:

The Lake District ‘Brand’ disowns West Cumbria in a fit of nuclear madness.

Tours through Lakeland 1900 - Seascale
Tours through Lakeland 1900 - Seascale
Tours through Lakeland

The Lake District National Park Authority has given the complicit thumbs up to the plan for a geological nuclear dump. They are happy to go to the next toxic step and their concerns are not with radioactive pollution but with polluting the ‘brand’ of the Lake District. West Cumbria is effectively disowned:

“We welcome the additional research on Brand Protection and await the outcomes of the research. This will hopefully build on the perception research undertaken by GVA Consultants which highlighted concerns amongst visitors to the Lake District National Park and Cumbria in general.
It remains a concern that significant media interest highlights the potential location of the geological disposal facility in the ‘Lake District’ rather than ‘West Cumbria’. As a result of the association of a geological disposal facility and the Lake District we remain very concerned that there may be a direct impact on businesses operating within and trading off the brand of the Lake District.”

The Lake District National Park Authority’s insistence that ‘West Cumbria’ is an entirely different geographical area to the ‘Lake District’ is an entirely artificial construct which has come about as a direct result of the ruinous nuclear industry. The parish of Gosforth lies within the National Park or hadn’t the LDNPA noticed? Before the arrival of the nuclear bomb making factory which later became Sellafield, Seascale and West Cumbria was an integral and much loved part of the Lake District or Greater Lakeland as this Furness Railway Tourist Guide from the 1900’s indicates:

Seascale – “the air is magnificent and its bracing and invigorating qualities are unequalled on the West Coast…..
There is one objection to Seascale as a holiday resort. The mixture of sea and mountain air creates an appetite that taxes the resources of a man of moderate means to allay. Some people perhaps, would regard this as a recommendation, since it is a sign of vigourous health. There are people who tire of attempting to discover the secret of what the ‘sad sea waves are saying.’ To such we recommend Seascale, for a walk or a drive inland speedily brings them into the wildest and romantic scenery that England can boast….Not that the waves at Seascale reveal much of sadness. They are rather frisky…even at times passionate..”

Lord Clark is chair of the LDNPA partnership and a director of Sellafield (paid for by the taxpayer). Any passion within the National Park Authority to protect Cumbria has gone with the toxic wind of nuclear complicity.

No matter how many taxpayer £millions are poured into a “Brand Protection Strategy” the only way to protect the ‘Lake District Brand’ is to say no to nuclear developments, everything else is rearranging the branded deck chairs on the Titanic.

Lake District National Park Authority’s thumbs up here:

A panoramic view of Keswick, Derwentwater and the surrounding fells, as viewed from Latrigg north of the town,_Cumbria

At the Town Council meeting tonight there was a representation to the council to ask for the ‘yes lets go along with the nuclear dump’ decision to
be rescinded.

People spoke passionately about being ashamed of their Town Council’s decision to go along with plans for a nuclear dump.

The council was advised that the nuclear repository would put paid to the Lake District’s ambitions as a World Heritage Site and also that there would be many more jobs from World Heritage Status than from nuclear…

Geology and earthquakes were spoken of including the recent Ambleside earthquake.

The result was that Keswick Town Council agreed to rescind the decision and take a revote in around 4 weeks time.

Remember Chernobyl – Kendal BirdCage 25th April 10am -12pm

Remember Chernobyl - Kendal 2012
Remember Chernobyl - Kendal 2012

On 26th April 1986 the radioactive cloud of fallout from the exploded nuclear power station spread over most of Europe. The cost of the disaster crippled the national budgets of Ukraine and Belarus. Vast tracts of their farm land has been ruined.

Events in Commemoration organised by Cumbria and Lancashire Area Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament

Wednesday 25th April 2012
from 10am -12 noon The Birdcage, Finkle Street Kendal
Display, theatre and leafleting on nuclear dreams nuclear reality
from 12.30pm Friends Meeting House Cafe for lunch
2.00pm- 3.30pm Kendal Museum, Station Rd LA9 6BT
Artist Marianne Birkby will give a guided tour of the exhibition ‘Rock Solid? Expo’
4pm Tea at the Castle Dairy Cafe behind the Box

All invited to join at any time of the day

Facebook Event

“Something in the Water?”

Lakes for Living - Eric Robson

Recently Eric Robson of Osprey Communications (The Partnership is a most lucrative client) appeared at the Words by the Water Festival with some other famous literary old boys from Carlisle asking “is there something in the water?”

Radiation Free Lakeland recently received this missive asking the same thing….


First, we want a lovely big hole in the ground.
Everything we put down it will be safe and sound
for a year or two. We can’t guarantee more
but if there’s an earthquake or a mighty big thaw
we could enjoy a Chernobyl-style outburst
of radioactive rain and if you’re dying of thirst
what better. In Cumbria we know how to live.
We’ll advertise the sites and make them attractive
so hundreds of tourists will be coming to see
and climbing the huge mountain of rocky debris
that will have to be listed as a Wainwright top.
Coaches will be bringing coach-loads non-stop.
Such an influx of tourists will be good for the coffers
and we’re making a film with 3 for 2 offers
of miniature depositories and bright flags to show
where nuclear waste comes up from below.
We’ll have souvenir tubes with a healthy sample
of radioactive waves and an ample
booklet to explain how our partnership’s managed
to bury the idea that anything’s been damaged.

Incredibly strong, our PARTNERSHIP’s growing.
It’s been going four years so anything showing
its face before that couldn’t possibly exist.
We have co-opted an agreeable geologist.
What we now want’s another four million spent
on our project as it was when Nirex went
and excavated in 1996. What was unstable
then is sure to be stable now. We’ll be able
to give our children something to look forward to.
Leukaemia and radiation sickness are not new
but a few extra mountains of excavated earth
and the bodies of babies deformed from birth
will bring new climbers and sightseers galore.
If there’s a terrorist among them we can shut the door.
Contaminated youngsters will make stocking fillers,
lucky-dip presents, that our local councillors
will offer with sumptuous brochures to remind
you to holiday here on the lid of the world and find
what a caring community we are. For a pound or two
extra to add to the Lion and Lambs in your zoo
you can have photos of our PARTNERSHIP fraternity
to keep on your mantelpiece for eternity.