300 residents from Glenavy and its neighboring communities met in Ballymacrickett School to hear a progress report on the CALNI campaign and to exchange views with local politicians. Many came thinking that Minister Poots’ “decision” was a done deal. However, far from it being a case of “last one out switch off the lights”, those attending went away encouraged that the campaign has everything to play for.
The meeting was chaired by local resident and campaigner Sir George Bain. He opened the meeting by thanking all those present for sustaining our vigorous campaign over the past three years. He then introduced the local councillors and MLA’s from all the parties who offered messages of support.
The CALNI vice-chair, Michael High, and the CALNI president, Danny Moore then made short presentations. They summarised the successes of the campaign to date, the strength of the campaign team and the options for the campaign going forward.
Questions and suggestions from the floor followed. Danny Moore then invited Co. Down Alan Chambers to address the meeting. Alan’s mixture of humour and detailed understanding of the technicalities of using poultry litter as a fertiliser for arable farming captured the full attention of all present. He shared all the benefits of using litter and surprised most of the present by presenting detailed figures that show that one tonne of litter replaces the need to use artificial fertilisers to the value of £57.58. Alan explained the costs and risks associated with the spreading of litter. He summarised his short talk by stressing the message that poultry litter is not a waste product to be disposed of. It is a resource to be used carefully.
The meeting was rounded off with an appeal to those present to invest their time and money in the next phase of the campaign.