Sunday, 21 September 2014

Every voice matters - the climate march in Knaresborough

It would have been lazy not to turn up, so checked the local options, to find that the nearest were at Newcastle or Knaresborough.

For those who don't know, Knaresborough is a small, pretty, historic town close to Ripon in North Yorkshire. It's a polite, quiet, well-mannered kind of town. Nice castle ruins, several nice pubs and coffee shops. Not exactly a hotbed of climate action passion, you would think.

But around 100 people turned up, including the local Green Party candidate for next year's election, Shan Oakes, who did most of the organising, by the look of things, and has posted some pictures here. The Canon of Ripon Cathedral, (didn't get your, name, sorry your reverence) was a prominent presence in his red garb, and gamely supported and joined in.

There were a couple of local church groups, a substantial anti-fracking group, and various others, including a number of ordinary Joes like you know who.

For a while it looked like the march was going to fizzle out before it started, when it was suggested that the numbers were too small to bother with the marching, but with a very little persuasion, it was clear that everyone very much wanted to march, so off we set from the castle green to the Town Hall, via the High Street, providing some small inconvenience for a few people in the traffic that built up behind us.

What was most impressive was the noise. These polite, terribly British (undemonstrative) marchers made a lot of noise, loud and proud, all the way back from the Town Hall to the Market Square, where after a few talks several folks headed of to the local parish for tea with the vicar - er -  canon.

It was a small gesture, as gestures go, but it was a part of a much bigger gesture, and clear that almost everywhere there are people who care enough about the future to give up their Sunday, stand up, and get counted.

Two police officers kept us company; thanks to them the march looked quite official, so gratitude for their forbearance.

Next up? back to the other bits of life for a day or two.