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Extinction Rebellion Bury St Edmunds march through town to raise awareness of neonicotinoids pesticides





Members of Extinction Rebellion took to the streets of Bury St Edmunds on Saturday to raise awareness of the use of toxic pesticides.

Around 20 people marched through the town centre to educate members of the public about neonicotinoids (neonics) which are being used by farmers across the UK and locally on crops such as sugar beet.

The Bury branch of Extinction Rebellion were joined by the Norwich branch and there was drumming, singing and talks about the pesticides. The group met at the Abbey Gardens and marched through the town with banners and placards, and some protesters dressed up as bees.

Extinction Rebellion Bury St Edmunds marched through the town centre to raise awareness of the use of toxic pesticides. Picture: Mark Westley
Extinction Rebellion Bury St Edmunds marched through the town centre to raise awareness of the use of toxic pesticides. Picture: Mark Westley
The group say more needs to be done. Picture: Mark Westley
The group say more needs to be done. Picture: Mark Westley
‘Protect don’t poison pollinators’. Picture: Mark Westley
‘Protect don’t poison pollinators’. Picture: Mark Westley

One of the organisers Jennifer Tooke-Marchant, from Elmswell, said: “It went pretty well. We didn’t have as many people as we’d hoped for.

“We picked up some people along the way who then followed us.

Neonicotinoids (neonics) are used on sugar beet crops. Picture: Mark Westley
Neonicotinoids (neonics) are used on sugar beet crops. Picture: Mark Westley
This was the first march about this issue. Picture: Mark Westley
This was the first march about this issue. Picture: Mark Westley
Anna James and Janette Winch. Picture: Mark Westley
Anna James and Janette Winch. Picture: Mark Westley

“We wanted to march to raise awareness that these pesticides are still being used even though they were banned in 2018. It is being used on sugar beet fields and the farmers that sell sugar beet to British Sugar are using these pesticides.

The group started the march in the Abbey Gardens. Picture: Mark Westley
The group started the march in the Abbey Gardens. Picture: Mark Westley
Reuben and Ottillie Tooke-Marchant. Picture: Mark Westley
Reuben and Ottillie Tooke-Marchant. Picture: Mark Westley

“Because the pesticides are extremely toxic most of it ends up in the soil and the water which has been found to be hugely damaging not only to bees but other pollinators.”

Jennifer added that the industrial scale of farming and the planting of one type of crop is not a natural eco system and that more sustainable farming practices are the way forward. She said a mix of crops is the solution.

There was drumming, signing and talks along the route. Picture: Mark Westley
There was drumming, signing and talks along the route. Picture: Mark Westley
Protesters held banners and placards. Picture: Mark Westley
Protesters held banners and placards. Picture: Mark Westley
The pesticides can get into the soil and the water and have a harmful impact on pollinators such as bees. Picture: Mark Westley
The pesticides can get into the soil and the water and have a harmful impact on pollinators such as bees. Picture: Mark Westley
‘Bee-have Tate and Lyle. No Neonicotinoids’. Picture: Mark Westley
‘Bee-have Tate and Lyle. No Neonicotinoids’. Picture: Mark Westley

A national petition has been set up, but the group feel that more needs to be done. They are thinking of other ways to inform the public about this issue.