• November 9, 2015


There are aspects of the British nuclear industry that are like a black comedy. A few years ago I learned that a UK train-spotters magazine openly published details of transports of nuclear waste. The guide called ‘Freightmaster’ provided information on rail-freight services. It included specific information on stations along the various routes and the arrival and departure times from these stations. The ‘anoraks’ could pop down and log the nuclear train as it trundled by with its deadly cargo.
The material carried on the train was even helpfully identified by the guide revealing that the train carries ‘nuclear flasks’. Bizarrely the railway enthusiasts who operated the web site said they had received clearance to post the information. This was just three years after 9/11 and a few months before the attack by Muslim extremists on the London underground.

Recently the BBC did a programme on Sellafield which to be perfectly honest was a bit of a whitewash. The first give away that this was hardly going to be some sort of expose was that the team and presenter had carte blanche to film all over the site.

We saw the crumbling containment tanks which will pose a threat for decades and we heard for the umpteenth time about the ‘heroics’ at the time of the Windscale fire – although the reality was they did not have a clue at the time what they were doing and only good luck saved the Northern part of the British Isles from Armageddon.

But we did not hear a great deal about John Dunster! Dunster was one of those around at the time of the Windscale fire and he went on to become Assistant Director at the National Radiological Protection Board. On his death he was eulogised by the International Commission on Radiological Protection.

However Dunster and his Windscale contemporaries were responsible for one of the most infamous events that the UK government has ever undertaken and which arguably impacted on the health of many people in the Isle of Man if not ultimately led to their deaths from cancer.

In 1958, almost as an aside, Dunster told a conference of nuclear scientist in Geneva:

“discharges (from Sellafield) have been deliberately maintained. . . high enough to obtain detectable levels in samples of fish, seaweed and shore sand, and the experiment is still proceeding. In 1956 the rate of discharge of radioactivity was deliberately increased, partly to dispose of unwanted wastes, but principally to yield better experimental data.”

Let’s be clear what was going on here the UK nuclear industry were deliberately polluting the Irish Sea with radiation to measure the impact on the environment. The experiment as he put it was continuing and they were using the people who lived around the North Irish sea as ‘guinea pigs’ in this quest for ‘experimental data’ According to Dunster the ‘experiment’ had ‘the support of the authorizing government departments’ i.e. the UK government gave the green light for radiation to be released to see where in the food chain, animals and humans the radiation ended up.

Despite Dunster’s revelations, because in the ‘50s’ the ‘musings’ of nuclear physicists at obscure conferences in Geneva were hardly headline grabbing, nobody became generally aware of the UK nuclear industries wrongdoing until the late 1970s.

‘Criminality’ is what Charles Haughey TD (later Taoiseach) described it as. Speaking in the Dail in 1984 Haughey said:

‘Will he admit that there has been criminal negligence in regard to this whole matter, that there has been a massive cover-up and that my statement that the people concerned should now be in jail has been backed up by the Director of Public Prosecutions in Britain? Even at this late stage will he do something to bring this ominous, dangerous scandal to an end and protect the lives of people?’

In Mann Sir Charles Kerruish also tried to raise the issue but as in Ireland the governments of the day were not interested so the British got away with murder!

Anyway to end where we began, following my revelations, the UK nuclear industry stopped posting ‘train timetables on nuclear waste’ as a signpost to terrorists so that at least had a happy ending!

Issued by: The Celtic News



The Celtic League established in 1961 has branches in the six Celtic Countries. It promotes cooperation between the countries and campaigns on a range of political, cultural and environmental matters. It highlights human rights abuse, military activity and socio-economic issues


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