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News release: Cycling protesters demand nuclear weapons be scrapped
- ‘Wheel Stop Trident’ campaign hits London streets this afternoon
- The cyclists are calling for next government to cut nuclear weapons, not public services
With one week to go before the election, cyclists from around London will join a protest-ride, taking in the offices of three companies which build Britain’s Trident nuclear weapons system, before heading to a protest in Parliament Square.
The Parliament elected in May is due to make a decision in 2016 on whether to replace Trident, at a cost of up to £100bn. With massive opposition around the UK, this has become key election issue, and Wheel Stop Trident are inviting cyclists from across the city to join them in their journey from the offices of arms manufacturers Serco in Croydon, Jacobs Engineering at Tower Bridge and Lockheed Martin on Regent Street.
Owen Everett of Camberwell, who is taking part in the journey, said:
“Whether to replace Trident has been called the biggest spending decision of the whole of the next Parliament. Meanwhile, cuts to social services are the key issue of this election: we’re making the link between the two. Feeling safe comes from living in a fairer society, with a free National Health Service and support when you’re unemployed or disabled. It does not come through weapons that equal mutually assured destruction. We want to drive this message home to all parties: Scrap Trident in 2016.”
Emily Graham, from Islington, said:
“I’m taking part in Wheel Stop Trident because these weapons are illegal, immoral and wasteful. Any use of these weapons of mass destruction would slaughter many thousands of civilians. We’ve signed up to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, so we’re obliged to decommission our nuclear weapons and not renew them. In 2016 we could set an example to all nuclear weapons states. To do otherwise would be unconscionable, as well as illegal.”
Although a decision has not yet been made on replacing Trident, the government has already spent hundreds of millions on new facilities at the Atomic Weapons Establishment in Berkshire. Recent revelations showed that these new developments are already over-budget and behind schedule.
Notes to editors
- Cyclists from the Wheel Stop Trident group will be joined by others, starting from Serco’s offices at 3.30pm, traveling via Jacob’s Engineering at Tower Bridge, and Lockheed Martin on Regents Street, ending up in Parliament Square at 7.00pm. See full schedule here: https://wheelstoptrident.wordpress.com/2015/04/22/join-us-on-thursday-30th-april-wheel-stop-trident-again/
- A decision on Trident replacement is due in 2016. Despite the fact that a decision has yet to be made, the government is spending around £1bn of taxpayers’ money every year on the Atomic Weapons Establishment (AWE), where Trident nuclear warheads are developed. It was revealed on 8 March 2015 that key aspects of the work had been heavily delayed due to design, planning and budget problems. £4bn will have been spent on preparatory work for the ‘Successor’ submarines by 2016.
- Polls consistently show that the majority of the British public opposes Trident renewal. Please see: http://cnduk.org/campaigns/no-to-trident/opinion-polls (external site).
- To arrange an interview with the cyclists or for more information, media are welcome to contact Hannah Brock on 07729 797637 or firstname.lastname@example.org Photos are available on request.