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Mary Smail

Climate love

solar panel protester defiant despite court threat

An environmental campaigner is facing a large fine and possible prison in a dispute over solar panels. Mary Smail has installed 16 panels on the back of her house in Church Street, Ashbourne, Derbyshire, in defiance of planning laws. Ms Smail said climate change was a crisis that demanded "rapid and radical action". Derbyshire Dales District Council said it was reviewing regulations but had to enforce laws as they stood.Ms Smail lives in house, which is more than 200 years old, on the main shopping street in Ashbourne. She said she was told by the council she had no chance of getting planning permission for solar panels due to the historic nature of the area. In May 2019 the district council declared a climate emergency but Ms Smail says she felt they were not backing the idea. After the council failed to "engage in a dialogue" about the solar panels, Ms Smail decided to confront the issue by putting them up anyway. She said: "Sadly it is very often the case that when you need to get things changed you have to break the rules in order to open the dialogue. "If bad laws are not challenged then they never get changed and we can see that through things like the suffragettes and civil rights in America." She has spent £10,000 on legal fees and is facing a bill for council costs of £9,700. After the deadline of a court injunction to remove the panels passed in June, she is also facing possible imprisonment.[partner]-[]-[headline]-[news]-[bizdev]-[isapi]&at_campaign_type=owned&at_link_origin=BBCNews&at_link_id=F1CEA076-4DB3-11EE-AD01-CE72FE754D29&at_link_type=web_link&at_campaign=Social_Flow&at_bbc_team=editorial&at_medium=social&at_ptr_name=twitter&at_format=link

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  • ellaa linn

    36 w

    Engaging in protests that violate local laws or regulations can lead to legal consequences, including fines, injunctions, or arrests. It's important for protesters to understand and consider the potential legal ramifications of their actions.

    • Sarah Chabane

      39 w

      This is ridiculous

      • Elizabeth Gathigia

        39 w

        A true fearless climate champion,

        • Hilda Wangui

          39 w

          She has stand with what is right and her principles on bring changes to the environment and ensure sustainable energy are seen

          • rosebellendiritu

            39 w

            We all have a right to challenge bad laws and stand on what is right without fear

            • Esther Wanjiku

              39 w

              A great heroine

              • Princess

                39 w

                Her willingness to face potential legal consequences in her dispute over solar panels showcases her unwavering commitment to the environment and sustainable energy.

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