When the Northerners Land Grabbed London

Posted by Nicola Sansom Activism and Community Campiagner

4th Oct 2012

GET OUT NOW! Get your things. You've got two minutes to leave. Stop crying. There's nothing you can do. Tell your kids to stop screaming. Say goodbye to your home. It's gone. 

An area of land as big as Greater Manchester is sold off every five days in poorer countries where people are spiralling into hunger ... that's a football pitch a minute!

Today a small group of campaigners from all over the country gathered in the cold in London to launch our new campaign action asking the world bank to freeze their large scale land deals: www.oxfam.org.uk/land

What did they do?

Dressed up as construction workers or 1940s land girls they took to the streets to land grab iconic areas in London and talk with members of the public to try to raise awareness of this ever growing human rights violation where people are losing their homes, jobs and food when their land is being taken away.

Bridgette Lane from Liverpool said "Dressing up as a land girl reminded me how important farming has been to this country. In the developing world where hunger is a problem land is being grabbed from the people who need it the most. Every person deserves the right to feed themselves, so that's why I am campaigning against landgrabs."

Harriet Milligan from York said (after we trended higher on twitter than Jeremy Kyle and One Direction and got retweeted by Stephen Fry) "The response we got today through social media was really encouraging. It goes to show that if we really make our voices heard we can make positive change".

Sean Couniham from Leeds said "A really inspiring day, making noise outside House of Parliament. Let's just hope our message is heard and that the World Bank takes notice and takes action against land grabs."

Emma Boyd from Newcastle said "People were keen to know more and interested- everyone was shocked when Emily and I told them about what happens to communities when their land is sold without their permission."

Amy Roberts from Sheffield said: "Imagine how you'd feel if someone sold your home without your consent and left you with no way of feeding your family. This situation is faced by millions of people living in some of the poorest people of the world. An area the size of Yorkshire is sold to foreign companies every six weeks, often in areas with serious hunger problems and is  mainly being used to grow biofuels rather than food. I took part to this campaign to call for an end to the injustice of land grabbing".

You may not have been land grabbing London with us today - but we would love it if you would join us in asking the World Bank to take action! www.oxfam.org.uk/land

And please do get in touch if you would like to campaign with us in the north of England to raise awareness of this important issue: nsansom@oxfam.org.uk

Blog post written by Nicola Sansom

Activism and Community Campiagner

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