“We’ve always been here.” Why are they protesting plans to build high-speed trains?

– For our generation there is one association: war and displacement. Then they would come with guns and chase people out of their homes. Now they want to do the same, but without guns, notes the 72-year-old man.

They don’t even wonder how much anyone is willing to pay them for their supposedly sacred property. The years they have spent here, the effort they have put into it, the health they have lost from working hard to create a home for themselves and perhaps their children, cannot be converted into money. Because the sons said they might one day return to Leipzig.

– Here I really had every lump of earth in my hand, I have worked for everything, in everything we have is a piece of our life. How much could it be worth? Can anyone judge it at all? – asks Mr. Tadeusz rhetorically. And he adds. – This land is bread. This cannot be taken from a man.

– Old trees are not transplanted. And we have a place to start our lives again? How is that? – adds Lucyna.

She doesn’t want to think about what could happen to them. But he can’t. – Now I wonder if we will spend at least one more Christmas at home with our children and grandchildren. Shall we decorate the Christmas tree, turn on the lights to make it more beautiful, the woman confides. They both worry not only about the house, but also about the statue in front of it. It is historical, from the eighteenth century, people say it to thank God that not everyone died during the epidemic that hit these areas.

The Brzozowski family is not at all comforted by the fact that if the red line is not chosen, they will be left alone. Because he knows that somewhere else people will meet what they might miss. – And just as I cry now, so must they cry. So how to enjoy? And how can anything be built on such a human accident? – sighs Mrs Lucyna.

I will not give up my family’s house

– I will not voluntarily leave this place. And if they take me out, I’ll be back. I will not give goodness what I have created for my family

– there is no uncertainty in the voice of Piotr Hadło, a man in his forties.

He lives in Zwódne with his wife and two children. In a brand new, modern, tastefully finished and upholstered house. It is surrounded by a beautiful garden with alleys, fashionable trees, shrubs and flowers. Nothing here is coincidental. Everything is well thought out and in place. That’s how they planned it to create a perfect dream place. That is why there is a small garden with vegetables, a garden shed with a rocking chair and a lovely pink house for a 3-year-old daughter. It only stopped a year ago.

Mr. Piotr knows exactly how much it cost. And he’s not talking about money, because to earn it, he had to sacrifice a lot in his life.

– I’ve been working since I was 17 and earned this house many, many years after I got married. We lived with my parents in an apartment building at the time. But we decided to go alone, the plot that my wife got from her parents and she from their parents. This land was already in the family before the war – says the man.

They took out a loan. Considerable. They’re still paying it back, and going forward, they’ve got another decade of installments. But when the house was already standing and there was no furniture in it, they immediately moved in, only to be alone at last. – But we bought a TV and the antenna was on the brush stick. And it was all right – she fondly remembers the first moments in their common house.

They have lived here for four years and continue to contribute to the house, because there is still some work to be done. Their daughter was born here. But Mr. Piotr barely remembers the childhood of his 13-year-old son. Because to create a home for everyone, he worked, worked and worked.

– I went out at night, came back at night, and so on, for years. But I knew what I was doing this for and that’s why I had the power. Now I couldn’t. That’s why I’m not giving the house back. For no money, he says.

There are many families like her in Zwódne. There are elderly people, but especially young people with children. None of them got anything from life as a gift, they all had to work for everything. Many are still under construction. Of course, they carry them out on credit, and although the vision of expropriation rather robs them of the willingness to work, they must continue these investments, because the banks squeeze and watch over what they gave the money for.

Mr. Piotr knows that the neighbors think like him too. People are determined. They say when it comes to what, tragedy can ensue, because every backyard is a drama of a different family.

And if they start expropriating, it gets even worse.

– Even if I don’t know how much money they paid, but I assume they will save on us, because not on contractors, no one will be able to rebuild what they have worked for years – says Hadło. And he adds that he doesn’t want money. – What would I do with it as a homeless person? Cover yourself, wife and children? How do you build a paper house with cards? – he asks rhetorically.

And he can’t agree with the fact that when the plans to build STH and high-speed trains were in motion, no one showed up in Zwódne or any other village.

Only recently are helicopters flying to take measurements and people walking through the fields to drill something.

Piotr Hadło, like many others, is convinced that the high-speed line could have been designed differently.

– During the years I worked, I traveled to Warsaw almost every day. I saw how the “eska” came into being, I saw where it was going and what was disappearing in the meantime. Maybe a few houses, and a bar in the field. Nothing anymore. Entire villages will die after this investment – sum up the resident of Zwódny.


Designers working for STH provided four different variants for high-speed lines as part of the so-called No. 5 spokes from Trawniki to the border with Ukraine. Not only families from the Zamość area, but also Krasnystaw, the municipality of Izbica, but also the municipality of Tomaszów Lubelski and among others are threatened with expropriation. Bełżec, which allowed the designers to predict the course of each of the four planned routes.

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