Posted by: vickim57 | 14 August 2009

Vestas rooftoppers will come down today, 11am and picket local MP Andrew Turner at 1pm

Congratulations to the Vestas rooftop protestors at East Cowes. They opened up a ‘second front’ in the battle to keep Vestas on the Isle of Wight making wind turbine blades (making them now – there’s no doubt Vestas will come back when the price is right – either because of the market picking up or because government subsidies are big enough). Anyone arriving on the Red Funnel ferry into East Cowes, IoW for the past 11 days will have been able to admire their wonderful banners, and their RMT flags fluttering from the turrets at the factory with the biggest Union Jack in the world (!).

They’ve decided to come down, thinking that they have made a big enough statement, and will use their skills in other ways. Today when they abseil down at 11am, they will talk to the press, alongside the Vestas workers, who have appreciated all their efforts and who have coordinated their work with them. Then they will go to the ‘surgery’ of the constituency MP, Andrew Turner at 1pm to highlight his hypocrisy, in supporting Vestas staying open on the Island at the same time as he opposes the building of a wind farm on the Island – just the argument that Vestas and the government make for why Vestas has to close (at the moment): the market is not big enough because every application for an onshore wind farm gets snarled up in objections from local people, often including the local politician. The opposition to wind farms is very vocal; the people supporting them much less so, and the politicians usually side with who is making the most noise. That is what Andrew Turner has done.

Save Vestas campaign blog and all the people who work with it salute the Vestas East Cowes rooftoppers. We know what a big boost you gave to the campaign, when you popped up on the roof 11 days ago, and we know what an effort it’s been to carry out the protest. A worthwhile one for all. On Wednesday this week, 12th August, national day of solidarity with Vestas workers, it was the highlight of the rally when you unfurled your new banner ‘wind power to the people’, complete with fanfare and flares.

Good luck all, today, Jax and the rest of the Vestas rooftoppers.

Save Vestas blog


Press statement – Thursday 13th August 4.30pm:

‘Despite the green rhetoric from the main political parties, the truth of their attitude is apparent where green jobs are allowed to be lost and local MP Andrew Turner actively opposes a wind farm on the Isle of Wight. This tipifies the NIMBY attitute which is blocking the progression of on-shore wind in the UK.’

‘Andrew Turner’s justification for the opposition to Wind power on the Island includes a statement that having a windfarm on the Isle of wight would have no effect on the vestas work force,(1) when in fact it is the cummulative effect of decisions like these which efffects demand for wind power in the UK and has directly let to the closure of vestas with the loss of over 600 jobs.’

Timings for photo and interview opportunities

7.30 am We will be available for interviews over the phone from this time Telephone 07944 744922.

11am Protesters will abseil down from the side of the vestas building, Columbine Road, Venture Quays, East Cowes, Isle of Wight and, alongside vestas workers, will be available for media interviews.

1pm – We will be at Andrew Turner’s constituency surgery requesting to talk to him on camera, to discuss his objections to Wind power on the Isle Of Wight, and his stance on NIMBYism.



  1. I for one have lost any respect I had for Mr Turner.

    Mr Turner only seems to be interested in his fight against the high car ferry fares.
    this is a worthy cause, it is not the only cause!

    The loss of 600 jobs on the IoW is catastrophic.
    The effect of this on those peoples lives is immense and many may never get over this.
    Mr Turner is right in that one wind farm application being unsuccessful does not close a factory, but does he not have the intelligence to realise that the attitude towards that one application is being mirrored around the country at just about every other application?

    My other gripe is his reported misuse of tax payers money when he apparently used it to pay court costs and compensation to an employee he was found to have wrongly dismissed!

    Respect and votes have to be earned Mr Turner. I suspect neither will be very high for you in the coming months to the next election!

  2. Keeping the initiative is the main issue at Vestas.

    There are a number problems coming from various angles operating at Vestas at the moment. How do Vestas workers develop consciousness and deal with it? The most important aspect of this is to keep the initiative in your own hands. You have to be the decision makers and no-one else. There might be outside forces, organisations or groups with useful green or Marxist-Leninist science as a guide, but this is not the main aspect, it is you, yourselves developing your abilities to see things through that will be the best service to you and the Isle of Wight people in the end. This is what it means to become political and conscious of the situation surrounding you.

    It is easy to become distracted and not stay focused. How can the struggle be maintained and extended throughout the Isle of Wight? Should the struggle be dissipated abroad? You have already recognised that this is not an option and your tactics have shown that. The occupation at the Vestas plant was never a stunt and this is why it gained so much sincere support here and abroad. So the question of how to become better organised and conscious is the issue now in taking things forward on a sound footing.

    Keeping the initiative means not only taking the day to day issues forward but also becoming more political. It means considering how to wage the political struggle at the highest level and supporting this struggle in an extra parliamentary way. For example there is much talk about Labour Representation in parliament these days but little happens. Yet the issues of Vestas and other things need to be raised in parliament and fought for. The existing cartel parties, Labour, Liberal and Tory will not do it. Look at Andrew Turner, he has been particularly useless. Simon Hughes said that it is not in Liberal ideology to support public ownership and Labour have sung off the same song sheet by “Not interfering in commercial decisions”. So it has to come down to you. The Labour Party is being particularly canny. Lumley has not been seen that much but is in constant contact with the Government and Miliband etc. This is an attempt to sideline the Vestas workers and as the Government then decide on how the political issue of the future of Wind Turbine production should proceed. This is not acceptable they have shown themselves not to be trusted. The Labour Government remains an obstacle to progress. The local Labour Party, who have supported the Vestas struggle, have to consider their positions and come over to support worker politicians who are prepared to stand in elections without precondition of becoming members of the Labour Party.

    Workers are not divisive at all because we know that unity is strength.

    Vestas workers, through your actions, you have the highest profile at the moment. Your politicisation occurred extremely quickly and your consciousness is being raised all of the time. Now that the occupation is over workers wish to maintain their momentum in various ways. You have developed speaking abilities amongst a number of your workforce fairly rapidly and in an impressive and eloquent manner. The issue is for you to maintain the initiative and keep it in your own hands. Parties can assist in this process by providing clarity and assist in analysis too but in the end that is all. It is Vestas workers and people on the island who should decide. Isle of Wight workers have a deep feeling of loyalty to the island and have readily supported the notion that more should be put into the island than is taken out. It is also reflected in the way that you continue to raise the importance of jobs being retained on the island and concern for both its environment and economic well being.
    Many have recognised the feeling for the island and in the recent day of action have gone out to various smaller towns on the island, maybe not in a big way yet. Various Vestas workers have been keen to do this such as at the action in Sandown. This action was small but exceedingly positive. The response from the public was very good; people took leaflets and bought green ribbons. In discussion one Vestas worker was asked about Vestas workers standing in the General Election as independent worker candidates. The discussion apparently was as to who should stand? The main problem was though – they might get elected!!! And then What?!!!
    Vestas workers you have to realise that you have come a long way in a short space of time and it is this experience that should encourage you. Listening to various politicians you have to understand that it is not a case of getting elected and becoming one of them. It is not an issue of avoiding answers or ducking and diving as mainstream politicians do. It is raising and fighting for the issues that affect ordinary people with honesty and integrity.
    So do not be afraid fellow workers, look how far you have come and what you have achieved and turn that into strength for the future. In no time at all you will learn how to deal with these shyster politicians.

    Vestas Workers, Success in your Struggle!!!

    Keep the initiative!!!


  3. via Twitter:


    @VentnorBlog #Vestas Protest: Interview with Jacklyn (podcast) #climatecamp says she’s got sore feet from walking on rooves, looking forward to going to pub for a beer and to be re-united wiith the folks from the magic roundabout and the Vestas workers

    RT @VentnorBlog VentnorBlog: Live Video As #Vestas protester Martin approaches Andrew Turner’s Office plus interview2 minutes ago from web

    #vestas RT via @hackneybrook NIMBY’s cowardly no-show, photo on Flickr from @simonperry showing picket outside office42 minutes ago from web

  4. Belinda says:

    I want to show my appreciation to the vestas workers they are actually doing somthing instead of sitting in an office dictating how we all need to be greener, so come on mr invironment minister be brave actually do what it says on your label go green go with wind power!!

    well done roof toppers you have my vote 100%


  5. […] To Read & View more visit… […]

  6. I am really proud of the rooftop protesters –

    In solidarity and spirit


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