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Bill Turnbull’s legacy inspires opponents of Sizewell C to ‘fight on’

Bill Turnbull’s legacy inspires opponents of Sizewell C to ‘fight on’

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ampaigners opposing the Sizewell C nuclear power project have said Bill Turnbull’s legacy as an “amazing friend and supporter” of their cause will inspire them to “fight on”.

The former BBC Breakfast presenter’s death was announced on Thursday – the same day that Boris Johnson used his final policy speech to promote the nuclear scheme and pledged £700 million of taxpayers’ money towards it.

The reactor is expected to be built by energy firm EDF, close to Mr Turnbull’s home town of Theberton in Suffolk.

During the planning phase, Mr Turnbull gave a passionate speech warning of the “awful devastation” the project would have on the area.

Bill was an amazing friend and supporter but he and his family would want us to fight on, and we will, with all our hearts, to honour him

Protest group Stop Sizewell C said it was “devastated” by the newsreader’s death, describing him as an “amazing friend and supporter” whose legacy would inspire the group to further oppose the project.

The group said: “Bill was an amazing friend and supporter but he and his family would want us to fight on, and we will, with all our hearts, to honour him.

“We send our love and deepest condolences to all who knew him.”

During a planning inspectorate hearing in 2021, Mr Turnbull spoke to oppose the plan “more in sorrow than protest” out of “fear” that a “beautiful, precious corner of Suffolk will fall victim to the most awful devastation”.

(PA Graphics) / PA Graphics

Mr Turnbull said he was speaking on behalf of “those who have no voice and who can reap only danger and destruction” from the project – “the rare and abundant wildlife that inhabits the land around Sizewell”.

The former journalist also cited “enormous disruption to business and livelihoods posed by EDF’s plan” as “reason enough to stop the project going ahead”.

Mr Turnbull said he and his wife lived two-and-a-half miles from the construction site and they had felt “blessed” to be surrounded by “extraordinary wildlife” in the area, including skylarks, marsh harriers and owls.

The outgoing Prime Minister has said he is confident the deal for the Sizewell C funding will get “over the line” in the coming weeks.

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