THE SUN was out and temperatures were scorching for the second protest at Yorkshire Water’s Saltend Waste Water Treatment Works yesterday. But it wasn’t just the weather that was upbeat in contrast to the rain-soaked first protest, but it was the mood of the protesters themselves. Buoyed up by the news last week that an Abatement Order had been issued, the mood of anger had been replaced by one of celebration – and a real sense of fun with Yorkshire Water being the butt of the bitter-sweet humour and a ‘flash mob’ dance to point out that Yorkshire Water are a public nuisance.
Although the odour from the treatment works has reduced in recent days, with Yorkshire Water announcing that recent rainfall has helped to take some of the strain off the biological treatment process at the plant, the messages delivered by Alex Watts (left in the photo above) and Bradley Robinson, backed up by up to 100 protesters, was that the campaign goes on until the site is stench free.
“We’re not giving up! And we’re not going anywhere!” was the common refrain from the families attending the protest. And of course the real test of this will be whether the protests will continue – and ‘how’ they will continue – against the public nuisance water company now that the summer peak load (‘pea season’) is coming to an end which traditionally in previous years means less smells and less complaints.
A thought: One protester explained that he works on the nearby Hull port and docks complex and throughout the summer visitors and travellers to the UK have experienced Yorkshire Water’s stink as their first impressions of the UK – perhaps lending a new name to Yorkshire Water’s stink “The Welcome to Hull pong!” The smell in the immediate industrial vicinity of the site was so bad, reported one Preston parish councillor, that a new worker at BP attending an induction session on Hedon Road was physically sick from the smell and had to be sent home!
Yorkshire Water are official sponsors of the Hull City of Culture – it would indeed be a sad state of affairs if ‘flash mob’ protesters were still having to point out that the company remains a public smelly nuisance in 2017. This should be enough to alarm Hull City Council as the major backers of City of Culture that the problematic Yorkshire Water company is their problem too!
Thanks to Rachel Cliffe and Paul Benson for sharing some of their photos with the Blog