Archive for the ‘Stoke-on-Trent’ Category

We started in Stoke-on-Trent, a small town famous for its pottery. It was raining, so we had a workshop with Thijs from AEGEE Utrecht (NL). We were discussing our programme and expectations about the Y Vote project and ended in a heated debate about several EU issues.

Afterwards, we moved on to Liverpool, where it was raining again. While searching our hotel, we ran into a crowd of Everton fans, who just came back from a soccer game. So we took the chance and distributed balloons with the message “Go Vote” on it. We had great fun until we were attacked by a fan who threw his beer at our van. But of course that couldn’t stop us promoting our campaign until the evening. After having dinner in a Mexican restaurant, we met Hannibal, who is studying in Liverpool and  who invited us home for a drink, which ended in a great party. We were also joined by some Irish, Italian, Polish and Lithuanian people, so half of Europe was united in Hannibal’s flat. After that evening, our new favourite song was “Fairy Tale” from the Norwegian Eurovision Song Contest candidate and winner 🙂 As we stayed in Liverpool for two days, we had the chance to do some sightseeing in the Beatles’ hometown. Unfortunately, it was still raining all the time.

On Monday, we moved on to Bolton, where we did some really great street action, supported by Helena, a local student. We were hanging up balloons in the pedestrian area and tried to arouse young people’s interest. Our guys were doing a particularly great job by running around with a balloon chain and shouting “European Elections – Go Vote”. We continued this campaign until another heavy rain shower stopped us as well as a police woman who asked us to remove our balloons that we had hung up all over. So we took our balloon chain and taped it around our van, which attracted a lot of attention during the following days. The same day, we were rewarded for our successful canvassing by some cultural programme: we went to the theatre to watch Mamet’s Oleanna and ate yummy Indian food.

The next city we stopped by was Manchester, where we were welcomed by heavy rain showers, which continued the whole day. But we met other campaigners from the EU Parliament in front of the town hall. They had built up a Choice Box and asked people to leave a video message for the EU Parliament. We joined them until the rain stopped us once again.

The following day led us to Sheffield, where we met Agnieszka from the AEGEE local. She had organised a stand at the university campus for us, where we could put up our material and give it away quite easily. To our big surprise, the sun was shining and we could reach a lot of students. Most of them already knew about the elections, but unfortunately not all of them were interested. So we tried to start a discussion with them and supplied them with more information. It was a big success because we could catch the attention of many students – both UK and European exchange students. Later on, we did some sightseeing and at night, we went to a students’ party, where we had a lot of fun until we were kicked out at 2.30 am.

Today we are moving on to Bradford/Leeds, where new participants will arrive and start the Fourth Part up to the Highlands.

All in all, it was great fun: we met many, many really nice people from all over Europe and learned a lot about campaigning and European issues in general.


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