THIRTY years ago people went about their normal life in Belarus – little knowing that on April 6 a massive explosion would destroy the Chernobyl power station and unleash a local “nuclear winter” that continues to plague the region. The blast spewed radioactive particles into the air, which spread over much of Western USSR and Europe. More than 230 people suffered acute radiation sickness and 31 of them died within three months. Three decades later, the devastating cost to health is still being counted. One in five Belarussians lives on contaminated land and the number of cancers and genetic defects in the area around the reactor continues to rise. It was reported that 95 per cent of children in the Chernobl area had at least one chronic illness, and the plight of these youngsters touched the heart of Royton’s Theresa Novotny and spurred her into action.
Oldham Chronicle 2nd Feb 2016 read more »