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Big Lunch on A30 Called off


To tie in with the Eden Project's Big Lunch taking place in communities around the UK on 19 July, a group of people involved with various Cornish Transition Towns and Climate Friendly Communities were planning to hold their own Big Lunch by the A30 at Carland Cross. The event would have
contrasted the positive contribution to mitigating climate change provided by the nearby wind farm with the negative impact caused by the increase in road traffic created by the expansion of the A30 trunk road.

However, discussions between the organisers and Devon and Cornwall Police failed to gain agreement on a suitable roadside site, and the organisers have reluctantly agreed to cancel the event.

One of the organisers Stuart Walker said:

"Our Big Lunch would have taken place on the wide verge between the Carland Cross windfarm and the A30 road. We felt we would not have impeded any traffic and for the small number of people involved we thought the verge was wide enough to hold the event leaving a safe space between ourselves and the road. However, the Police were concerned that we could have distracted the traffic and that it was unsafe for us to walk alongside the A30, despite there being no legal restrictions on pedestrians using the road. We
volunteered to visit the area with the Police to find any alternative sites, but were informed that there would be none anywhere on the A30".

The cancellation of the A30 Big Lunch contrasts with the protest against fuel prices by some lorry drivers during the spring bank Holiday weekend in 2008. That protest resulted in severe disruption caused by the lorry drivers moving deliberately slowly. Banners were displayed on their vehicles
and on road bridges which could have distracted other drivers.

Stuart Walker continued

"We raised the fact that the 2008 Lorry Drivers fuel protest went ahead with the Police. They told us that they would have advised those protesters not to go ahead either".

"What this does make clear is that the Police feel that the A30 trunk road is designed purely for car and lorry use and think it is too dangerous for pedestrians. As there is no legal restriction on pedestrian use of the A30 or any other A class road, this speaks volumes about the inadequacy of the
Highways Agency's road designs to provide for users other than lorries and cars".