Call from the Wilderness Forest of Dean Wilderness Centre

by Apok
on Wednesday 01 Feb 2012

type: Press Release
topic: The Environment
region: South Wales

Statement from the Wilderness Centre : On the day of Gloucestershire County Council meeting that will determine the councils next course of action.

Two activists jedi'd their way into the meeting, and handing out our "statement of intent" (link below) to the officious types sat around with members of the police, various council officers and advisors in Shire Hall, Gloucester, before being asking to leave -all was very polite, civil and in good humour.

We await their decision, which will dictate our next move.
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Call from the Wilderness

Here in the wilderness we are trying to find our way home. How did we come to dwell here in the wilderness? For over 40 years the wilderness has been a pioneering environmental education centre. Then last year Gloucestershire county council decided that it was no longer in the public interest to sustain the centre. Better value for the taxpayer to sell it to the highest bidder? We disagree. We believe that education is the greatest source of wealth in our communities. Surely the exploitation of our environment can only be driven by ignorance. Education is our greatest tool in the struggle against exploitation.
The council seem to think otherwise. The county council, or in their words “the powers that be” think we are homeless. Travellers, squatters they tell us to... move on. They want us out of here. We don’t belong here. They tell us we have no right to be here. They’ve set their wolves to prowl around the grounds locking things down. They want our names and previous addresses. They don’t trust us. They are concerned about health and safety. The public are a liability. We tried to talk about responsibility. We tried to assure them that we fully comprehend the implications of a compost toilet. But they are doubtful.

Exactly who is bewildered?

We came here on the first full moon of the year with the intention of creating an environmental education centre to disclose a process of learning the skills and techniques required to move towards a home founded upon the principles of economic self-sufficiency and ecological sustainability.
To be a force of resolution we need people to join us. Decisive people who understand the consequences of there actions. Committed, hard working people. We need people with a respect for food. We need gardeners and growers who can cultivate the ideas that have been sown in our soil by the differing schools of permaculture and bio-dynamics. Who know how let these ideas grow organically. We need people with the determination to dig. Reflective people who look for their reflection in others. People who can practice the hospitality of the guest. People who do not wait for others to make necessary changes.
Here in the wilderness we make ourselves at home. You are welcome.

Statement of Intent : protectthewilderness.org.uk/protect.html
Website (still in progress) protectthewilderness.org.uk

 

Protect The Wilderness

All [at] protectthewilderness [dot] org [dot] uk