A strangely significant Saturday afternoon in Sipson

At first sight it might have appeared a little strange. In one corner of Airplot, the Greenpeace field in Sipson now owned by over 50,000 people, stood three horses. In the other, elegant women dressed as climate suffragettes and a few smartly-dressed men with a camp fire in the background.

The Climate Rush had come to Sipson, the village which would be obliterated if a third runway goes ahead at Heathrow. The afternoon turned out to be far from strange; indeed, it became strangely significant. People fighting struggles against what out-of-control businesses are doing to their communities stood up, one by one, to tell their moving tales. And it felt great, and empowering, and like being part of something.

We heard how Shell is decimating communities and destroying precious habitats at on the West Coat of Ireland; of the way open-cast mining is shattering the peace and quiet of Merthyr Tydfil; of E-ON’s (failed) attempts to destroy valuable lakes in Berkshire. We heard from residents living in the sprawling council estate of Easterhouse in Glasgow and from the Vespa workers who occupied their wind turbine factory on the Isle of Wight. And, of course, we heard about BAA’s plans to destroy Sipson, to tear the heart out of a community which is about 1,000 years older than the airport which is trying to cover it in several feet of tarmac.

Different struggles but with huge similarities. Ordinary people linking up with climate activists to fight their battles. The next day the Climate Rush took to the road heading north. More stories, more struggles, more hope will doubtless follow as they wind their way towards Totnes.