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Fwd: Fylingdales update

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  • msbrown@boltblue.net
    From: FlossieMintballs@aol.com Subject: Fyliongdales update Date: Sun, 1 Dec 2002 17:58:04 EST Update from Fylingdales November 29th 2002 USA s Lt Gen Kadish s
    Message 1 of 1 , Dec 2, 2002
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      From: FlossieMintballs@...
      Subject: Fyliongdales update
      Date: Sun, 1 Dec 2002 17:58:04 EST

      Update from Fylingdales November 29th 2002

      USA's Lt Gen Kadish's visit: November 21st: The significance of the visit to
      Fylingdales of Lt Gen Ronald Kadish, Chief of the USA's Missile Defense Agency,
      is that this is the man in charge of USA's National Missile Defense, 'Star
      Wars'. This is a clear indication that the decision to allow the USA to use
      the base for its NMD programme has already been made behind closed doors. Only
      two weeks ago, the UK's Secretary of State for Defence, Geoff Hoon stated that
      the issue of 'Star Wars' would be debated in public. So, you can say what you
      like, as loud as you like and for as long as you like, but it will not affect a
      decision - it is already a fait accompli.

      There was a massive police operation to get Kadish into and out of the base,
      with officers being brought in from as far away as Wales. We shall ask for a
      statement of the cost of the policing for Kadish's visit, and whether the UK or
      the USA paid the bill. The demonstrators braved the torrential rain and
      freezing cold wind, but the extensive local and national media coverage made it
      well worth while. Kadish deeply embarrassed the UK Government and put 'Star
      Wars' back in the news.

      Plans approved:
      The North York Moors National Park Development sub-Committee on November 12th
      passed the plans for Dog Kennels (actually a substantial installation to
      accommodate 12 dogs and their handlers: the plans include dining room, kitchen,
      vets' room and amenities). The committee insisted that the existing dogs'
      facility must be demolished. Apart from that, they do not appear to have
      addressed other objections to the plans. "It is unfair discrimination against
      cats", which one objector forgot to delete from the representation submitted to
      the Chief Planning Officer, was included as an item on the sub-Committee's
      Agenda. This is recorded in the files forever. I shall desist from 'naming and
      shaming' the person responsible. She has suffered enough derision for this
      gaffe. Thank you, Jackie, for the sympathetic gift of a 'Cat Lovers Against the
      Bomb' badge.

      Plans in the Pipeline: not yet advertised:
      The piecemeal development of the base security and infrastructure is
      continuing: Plans are in preparation to expand the Ministry of Defence Police
      facilities. The MoD Police are responsible for the security at the base, so
      this development indicates that an increase in their numbers is anticipated -
      extra security in advance of 'Star Wars'? There are plans to refurbish (and
      expand?) most of the base buildings, which are said to be in a dilapidated
      state. They are flat-roofed, jerry-built structures, which were not designed to
      withstand the adverse weather conditions of a Yorkshire moor. (Have you read
      Wuthering Heights?) The radar equipment, etc is supplied and maintained by the
      US Space Command (now incorporated into US Strategic Command). We intend to
      enquire who is paying for current upgrades, the USA or UK.

      Bridleways: the saga continues:
      Briefly to recap: TJ discovered that two bridleways on the base, which enter
      the 'Secure Area' through the electric anti-intruder security fence, were shown
      on the new OS Explorer Map. Rights of Way Officers verified them.
      Under the Highways Act 1980, the public has the right to pass along bridleways.
      On August 24th several people were arrested, then de-arrested later, for
      attempting to do so. For 40 years the MoD has prevented public access. On 25th
      September the Defence Estates Agency put up notices stating that, under the
      terms of the Defence Lands Act 1842, these bridleways, where they entered the
      Secure Area and for some distance outside, were closed forthwith.

      This peremptory decision was challenged; representations were made to the
      Secretary of State for Defence. The Yorkshire Evening Press, November 5th,
      reported: Star Wars Protesters Fight to Save Footpaths. The media is interested
      in any future developments. In response to two representations to Miss G A
      Coop, Public Rights of Way Officer, she has sent a copy of the Report, which
      was presented to the Park Services Committee on November 12th, plus a detailed
      two-page reply to the points raised in our complaints. It transpires that the
      bridleway from the A169 Whitby - Pickering Road has been identified as the
      Robin Hood's Bay 'Old Salt Road' (believed to be mediaeval or earlier). It went
      W - E over Snod Hill, on which the Fylingdales BMEWS pyramid stands. (The
      Authority has recognised that the base ought to be called 'RAF Snod' - actually
      it should properly be 'USSPACECOM Snod'). Part of the Robin Hood's Bay Road was
      extinguished in 1962 for the construction of the old 'golf balls'. Tradition
      states that the road was a notorious smugglers' route and lent its name to the
      legendary Saltersgate Inn.

      The other bridleway, which runs alongside the security fence and through it
      into, the E side of the base Secure Area, and which used to join the Robin
      Hood's Bay Road prior to 1962, may be an ancient trackway. Iron Age burial
      tumuli alongside the route indicate its history. On the authority of Lewis
      Moonie, Under Secretary of State for Defence, this bridleway has been diverted
      from its historic route.
      Miss Coop states: "In recognition of its history, the Authority would consider
      recreating the route as a bridleway when the land is no longer required for
      active purposes by the MoD. I am not aware of any grounds on which the
      Authority may challenge either the Ministry of Defence's decision to close the
      bridleway in 1962 or the changes made by the Under Secretary of State for
      Defence last month."

      The MoD is now seeking to extinguish the rest of the Robin Hood's Bay 'Old Salt
      Road' leading from its junction with the A169. The Defence Lands Act does not
      give authority for closure of this section, as it presents no problem to the
      security of the site. The MoD therefore has to make application to the County
      Council under the provisions of the Highways Act 1980. The November 12th
      Report, Bridleways at RAF Fylingdales, Lockton, states: "The Authority would
      not normally support the extinguishment of public rights of way unless it is
      with the agreement of users and, in most cases with the provision of an equal
      or better public right of way in the vicinity which would be a considerable
      benefit to the public. Extinguishing a right of way because it is a dead end is
      not in itself a valid reason as many are still used and enjoyed by the public".
      There is potential for significant public gain by the creation of bridleways on
      the MoD estate to mitigate the loss of the cul-de-sac bridleway

      The NYMNPA is hoping that they can negotiate a 'deal' and create two bridleways
      across the MoD land (which would include official recognition of the famous
      Lyke Wake Walk) in exchange for agreeing to closure of the remainder of the
      ancient Robin Hood's Bay Road. The North Yorkshire County Council has approved
      in principle. Can you imagine the MoD accepting it? We shall make further
      representation to insist that the security fence, which obstructs the paths, be
      moved. Of course the most satisfactory solution - close the base and reinstate
      the rights of way.

      Standing Stone: An ancient stone on the road verge, marks the junction of the
      A169 - Robin Hood's Bay Road. The NYMNPA Archaeologist will investigate and
      give us an opinion. There is lettering incised into its surface, which has been
      partially erased with a chisel (in1962?). We believe this is a 'lost' guide
      stone known as 'the Trough or Brough Stone'.

      Fylingdales Star Peace Camp (6 months old November 28th): further eviction
      moves:
      On November 6th the Whitby County Court granted a Repossession Order to the
      landowners, the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust. The owners acknowledged that the land
      was not damaged or polluted by the campers. On November 16th a Notice to Quit,
      with immediate effect, was issued. The landowners can now remove all equipment
      from the site. The NYMNPA is also contemplating Enforcement Action, to prohibit
      camping on the exposed moor, which will be decided by the Development sub-
      Committee on December 12th. Representations have been made for consideration at
      that meeting, maintaining that the right to assemble and protest is enshrined
      in the Human Rights Act, 1980.

      York Crown Court: November 25th - 29th: Sylvia and Olivia on trial for 'going
      equipped' to disable Fylingdales. Convicted (after judge appeared to direct
      jury to acquit): sentence: Conditional Discharge for two years: ordered to pay
      over £1000 costs of trial.


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