A vindicated Sid begins to eat again after St Paul’s Cathedral endorses his mission and prevents his arrest
Sid begins to eat again...
You will be relieved to hear that Sid finally broke his fast late on Wednesday evening this week, his 39th birthday, most of which he spent on the steps of St Paul's Cathedral in London surrounded by banners and an awful lot of goodwill. However the end of his strike was more a case of handing in the spoon than throwing in the towel.
... after St Paul’s Cathedral endorses his mission - and prevents his arrest!
You will recall that Sid presented St Paul's Cathedral with a symbolic spoon created at Shire Hall earlier during his strike. Sid described the spoon as "a symbolic response to our throwaway approach to resources, an approach epitomised in single-use plastics and the continued use of landfill and incineration. By contrast, the spoon is a beautiful, natural, durable item that shows the way we should be going - consciously valuing and conserving the things we use.”
St Paul's expressed strong support for Sid’s gesture and his aims, and placed the symbolic spoon on the cathedral altar. When police arrived outside the cathedral apparently intending to arrest Mr Saunders, staff intervened, vouching for his character and his mission and giving him special permission to be photographed on the cathedral steps!
Sid returns to Shire Hall for symbolic handing over of the final spoon today (Friday 15th) 10am...
Mr Saunders had presented spoons last week to Gloucester Cathedral and to Stroud MP/shadow DEFRA minister David Drew last week (see pic above) - both were received with sympathy and encouragement. Sid returns at 10am to Shire Hall this Friday (today at time of writing) to present his last spoon to County Councillor Rachel Smith in a symbolic call to GCC to do the right thing with waste, as well as the right thing by Gloucestershire taxpayers.
Support from Molly Scott Cato MEP...
Molly Scott Cato, MEP for the South West of England, sent her support to Sid for his courageous action which was fully vindicated by the Information Commissioner's notice last week:
“Sid is a modern-day hero, standing up for the rights of local people to have access to information that informs them on impacts to their health, environment and how their taxes are being used. This may be the first time someone has been prepared to go on hunger strike to extract public interest information from a public authority.
“It is a travesty of our political and democratic system that people feel compelled to resort to such extreme acts to try and force authorities to release information that is rightfully theirs in the first place.”
And from Hollywood
Jeremy Irons expressed his regret at not being able to attend, but send a resounding "Bravo to Sid!!!!!" from across the Atlantic.
... and from all of us at No Mo In Glo / Cancel the CONtract
THANK YOU SID, and thank you to all of you - for your presence at the Festival of Resistance events, your sharing, your comments, all the ways you have been #SupportingSid, and your continued - and justified - conviction that the Gloucestershire public deserves better from its county council.
The council must now face its legal obligations as set out in the tribunal judgement last year and the ICO decision notice last week and provide the information we have a right to see.