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Dying of the countryside

No doubt many of your readers will have heard the extract from Richard Burton’s narration of Under Milk Wood, which now accompanies a television advert for a German motor car.

It strikes me that when Richard Burton recorded Dylan Thomas’s Play for Voices in 1963, neither Swansea (where Thomas was born) nor any of the small towns that could have been the setting for Under Milk Wood, could imagine that in 2007 the Welsh landscape would have changed so much so as to render the title Under Milk Wood almost redundant.

Today, the sprawling, crawling, sometimes turning blight of windmills plagues the land and there is no prospect of hearing the “dew falling” or the “invisible starfall”.

Instead, the “anthracite statues of horses” sleeping in the fields have been replaced by monsterous structures that flicker, whir and stand tall like the Martian war machines from War of the Worlds. And for what?

Certainly not because the people of Wales asked for their historic landscape to be forever changed, and certainly not because the communities of Wales have asked for thousands of trees to be felled in their name.

Soon it will be impossible to find Milk Wood and equally impossible not to see Milk Windfarm???

Not “all the people of the lulled and dumbfound town are sleeping now”. Some of us are asking who voted for these massive wind factories and who gave permission for them to be built on some of our most precious countryside? Do people really know what is happening to their land?

Adapting yet another verse from Thomas:

Do not go gentle into a land filled with turbines but rage, rage against the dying of the countryside.

Ian Gardner

Gwynant

Waen

Nantglyn

Denbighshire

Evening Post

22 August 2007