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More1980s_CND

Added: 29-01-03, Changed: 10/05/2012, 11/09/2017

Other Things TW CND have done in the 1980's

"Widen the Web" at Greenham common it's sequel Third Battle of Newbury - road protest
One christmas meeting the group guest's was Pat Arrowsmith 
The Numbers game Effects of the nuclear bomb of Japan knowing all the facts and figures - was not a game we wanted to play after a while.
Allsorts of important generals agreed totally starting with
Moutbattens speech of 1979 
Stall shops and non-violent-direct-action occured all over the country Peace shop in Tunbridge Wells, TW CND Leaflet
More TW CND,
Review of CND until about 1993

International Shadows Campaign   

Between 00.00 and 00.30 AM on the 6 August 1985 approximately a dozen members of Tunbridge Wells CND took part in the international shadows Campaign. We drew outlines of our selves, and of pets on cardboard, wall paper, and PVC sheeting. Mike experimented with chalk powdered, size, and came up with a mixture that would stand a certain amount of rain but could be washed off (Civil Defence enthusiasm would find this useful for white washing windows in case of nuclear attack). Allen, Dennis, and Andrew's group Painted six shadows on the pavement around the multistorey car park. We then moved to Monson Road Adult Education Centre where we completed two shadows, and were making our way back to the car when two men came towards us, and asked us what we were doing out came the police Id's, and that was the end of our shadow Painting. One of them went for two duty cops, as we had admitted to do some shadows in another place they assumed that we had done shadows out side the library which we neither denied or confirmed (actually Maura, Sue, Martin, and Jan's group had just done them, and were busy outside the Information centre painting as the police came past to arrest us), at this point I must not forget to Apologise for the chalk on the off duty cops trousers but he should not have stepped forward when he was pushing his I.D in the face of a member of our groups face without due regard to all our chalky equipment in our hands.

The next Group to be arrested was Maura's she says they let her complete her shadow before they arrested her. Jan got away despite Maura's offer to put there chalky equipment in the car that Jan was the driver of. So as not to make a mess of the Police car there equipment was loaded into the car and the car was driven at high speed in reverse the 50 yards to the front door of the Police Station. This group had done better than the first group in also doing the Council Offices at Grove Hill, and Vale Road Post Office.

I got out of the Police Cells at approximately 3.00 AM Allen, and Dennis got out before me. When I left the cell, Maura, and Sue were still singing (they had been singing for at least two hours non-stop) the Sergeant that interviewed me said he had not heard any singing but when Sue (last out at 4.00 AM) asked why she had been in the cell so long she was told that they liked listening to the singing.

On that Tuesday Evening Val, Jonathan, Lynn and baby, Nigel, and Jim gave them selves up to the police, and here we must make another apology to the police the baby was sick on there counter.

The following Tuesday Mike gave himself up as our organiser he had also been busy in another part of the country. As he could not be in Tunbridge Wells at the time.

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Bombing of Libya from UK - 1985

About 12 people from T/W went and demonstrated at Whitehall London on Tuesday 15 April the evening of the bombing of Libya by F-111's from an American base in Britain. Much of CND's earlier ground work in exposing that there are 134 American bases in Britain not six that the Government would have us believe five years ago must have contributed towards the general opposition in this country to our governments agreement to allow the attack on Libya from Britain. Did you know that a full Cruise convoy left Greenham Common on the previous Fridays to return late on the Tuesdays. Usual only part of the Cruise convoy is sent out.

On the following Saturdays a number of us took part in the sit down around the American Embassy at 3PM we then walked along Oxford street to Hyde park on the way the walk split as the police stopped the walk to allow traffic to continue at this point the main part of the procession sat down for an hour. There were a number of speakers in Hyde park one of them said that Britain did not Declare War on Libya before the attack and that Lawyers amongst should look into the legal side of that.

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Chenonbyl - April 1984?

Then there was the Chenobyl accident. At CND's Tuesdays meeting in my flat we were busy making posters on card to be tied to lamppost etc. around the town.

Horace my next door neighbour came round with one of his ideas he suggested that we should contact as many of the local pressure groups in order to get stalls and leaflets out on Saturdays 3 May. He had the Idea of setting up a row of stalls with flags suspended over the stalls saying Kiev Meltdown. Phil got 1000 leaflets printed, with the names of some of the local groups that we could get hold of, and could agreed at short notice to having there names put on the leaflet they were the following local groups Animal Rights, British Soviet Friendship Society, Christian C.N.D. Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, Friends of the Earth, Green Party, Greenpeace, United Nations Association. Unfortunately Greenpeace, and Animal Rights were contacted to late, and did not have the opportunity to have there names printed on the leaflet, but they all either had stall's or some of there leaflet's on shared stall's in the Pedestrian Precinct in the town.

We started setting up the stalls at about 10.00. We got through the main part of 1000 leaflets by 11am and Phil got another 1000 printed. We stayed until 2.30 or 3.00, although Animal Rights stayed in the Precinct, and CND maintained it's stall in Monson Road, longer. The police paid no attention to us. CND has found in the past that the police only ask us to move if they receive complaints. All the groups collected donations which covered the cost of the leaflets, and some of the groups got membership inquires.

On Wednesdays the message came through CND's telephone tree that there would be a march on Thursday 1st, from Millbank at noon to the Mall in London where British Nuclear Fuels Ltd. is based where a letter would be taken to the Russian Embassy Unfortunately I could not make that one so I cannot tell you how it went. This was not covered by the media either, but letters criticising CND for not demonstrating at the Russian accident were.

CND opposed to Nuclear Power because of the Military link. The British Government now says that no civil Nuclear material has been transferred to the military during the term of this Government. We had previously been told that the connection had been broken in about 1971. Britain has Supplied The U.S.A with civil Plutonium, and the U.S. don't draw any distinction between Civil, and Military Nuclear material. So who cares about The Non Proliferation Treaty any way ?

Incidentally Horace quite often has Ideas He has bought a quantity of Russian stamps that have pictures of Sammanther Smith the girl who three years ago wrote to Reagan and Chenenko asking what they were doing about peace, as you may remember Mr Reagan ignored the letter, and Mr Chenenko invited Sammanther to Moscow where she was made welcome by the city. Unfortunately she died In a plain crash last year. Horace suggests that four stamps be sold for £1 half of which would be given to CND.

There is a general feeling among some of the various groups locally that we should combine are resources, and produce one Magazine between us which should allow us to have a Magazine printed professionally at a more reasonable cost than would be practical for each individual group FOE are very interested.

A similar Idea has come from Brian Leslie of Tunbridge Wells Green Party he is asking for people who are interested in setting up a bimonthly/monthly/weekly alternative News Paper possibly called "Alternative" the Paper would accept material from ourselves, the groups listed above, Green Party, Labour Party, Liberal Party, and SDP, he says that it's purpose is not to replace individual groups News Letter's. (that is not to say that FOE, CND, etc. should not combine our News Letter's though).

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After the INF. - 1989?

A Report of the Talk given to Canterbury CND by Dan Plesch of CND, and British American Security Information Council. By Andrew Lohmann

On The 21st January Dennis Turpin, my father, and myself went to Canterbury. I thought Canterbury was rather a long way to travel on a Thursday Evening, but we went anyway. Dan has been a CND vice chair, and is doing research for CND. Dan opened by saying that the INF agreement to get rid of a class of missiles is the 1st agreement to disarm in any way since 1814 when the Americans and Canadians agreed not to have warships on Lake Ontario.

The important thing about the INF agreement is that the obstacle of Verification has been overcome.

The INF was largely a response to The World wide Peace movement, and pressure from other NATO countries for instants.

The Spanish have Base's, but no Nuclear Weapons.

Even Turkey won't have NATO's Nuclear modernisation (at this point some surprise was expressed by the meeting considering how Turkey treats it political opponents {it does not allow them}).

Greece has also resisted NATO to some extent.

Dan said that it is important for us to go to Brussels on 15 February when Mrs Thatcher goes to a NATO meeting about the modernisation the Belgium Peace Movement will be active that week, Dan pointed out that during this type of event Peace organisations can put over there points to the media between press conferences. (by the time you see this the date will have passed)

The new Nuclear Weapons for Europe will be announced soon possibly April which Dan spoke about and are covered in the report NATO's New Nuclear Weapons printed by British American Security Information Council @ £2-00 (there should be some copies at Grassroots). The report is a technical report with cross references.

Dan reminded us that in the US. MX and Star Wars have had there funding restricted by the effort of the peace movement.

The Modernisation involves a shift towards long range Nuclear weapons. Artillery to Air Launched Cruise which will extend the range of the Plane's that they are fitted to by 400 miles so the result is that they have the same range as the Ground launched Cruise Missile they replace. The dismantling of Cruise which has been agreed at the INF defines how small the pieces it will be broken up into but parts like the Guidance system and the warhead won't be destroyed.

1300 Air Launched Cruise Missiles will be coming to Europe to replace 572 Ground launched cruise. There will also be 600 Launchers for either Conventional or Nuclear Weapon's, Rockets, and Stealth Missile's mainly pushed into Europe by Mrs Thatcher at a NATO meeting in Canada 4 years ago. This is despite the 1987 Tory manifesto stating that there was no NATO commitment to modernisation. Dan was not pessimistic, and he spoke of some more optimistic points.

The Wall Street Crash was probably the greatest help the peace movement in the US has had. US Senators don't like to see excess expenditure at this sort of time.

Dan Talked a lot about how we should be campaigning at the moment. On Trident putting over Rent-a-Rocket, which the rental fee is British sovereignty, it is not Independent, 1st strike, and our agreement has to be renegotiated every 4 year's with each income American President.

The Americans can only spare British Trident 16 warheads rather than its full complement of 24 Nuclear War heads. (I did not note these figures down, and I am not sure if they are correct)

We should be saying that the European Nuclear Artillery shells are Neutron Capable. The US has developed an easily fit able modification to 8" Nuclear Artillery shells that make them Neutron bomb capable although Dan has as not as yet got evidence that the modification has been made to German shells.

CND Need to address the arguments that the Tories put up.

We have to have it because it has been invented. This can be answered by. A potential enemy would have to be mad to use it, and if he is you can't deter the irrational anyway. For instants Libya could use it not caring if they were destroyed by it because they will all go to heaven anyway.

On this point the nuclear industry is very Verifiable and no country could get nuclear material with out the nuclear powers knowing, the problem at the moment is that the Nuclear powers are so concerned with each other that they are not looking at what is going on around there feet.

Do you remember that the Tories used to say they the Multilateralists are the real disarmer's, well who are the real disarmer's now. We have let this argument go. Mrs Thatcher can't imagine Britain with out The Nuclear Deterrent.

Dan likened the disarmament negotiation to the Time Bomb in the Basement. We should be negotiating on how to get rid of it. We can't expect to rely on having the bomb to keep us safe for the coming thousands of years.

Dan described getting rid of Ground launched Cruise and getting the modernisation as two off the shelf three on the shelf and announcing they have taken one off the shelf.

Dennis asked a question to bring in the Chinese angle (you may remember that Dennis went to china during September last year with Oxford Research). The Chinese may come in at a 50% reduction with there own reductions in Nuclear Weapons.

My conclusion is that it was well worth going to Canterbury to hear Dan Plesch even if it was 100 miles and I was late for work the next day. We hoped to have Dan to Tunbridge Wells

Since that meeting Dans report hit the news on 26 January with questions in parliament, and Dan was interviewed on Radio 4's 'PM' programme. I believe that Michael Hesiltine Minister for Defence 4 year's ago conceded that there was a NATO meeting in Canada about modernisation in Europe. Although George Younger said there had been no prior agreement to have this modernisation.

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National Demo at Faslane - October 1986 

We took part in the National Demo at Faslane, Scotland on 4 October 1986 that action was a mass trespass on MOD land around the Polaris base where work is being done on Trident. It was good to see Mike again he has been living at Faslane but where he is now I don't now the locals seemed very pleased to see us, Camarthen Council is very sympathetic to CND. Even the modplods where very vocally sympathetic although they would not go as far as holding our Banner for a Photo in fear of being recognised. The MOD police had come from all over the country including Molesworth (where we sat down in the snow at the beginning of the year) I was actuary told by one of the modplods that he did want to see the base there either. We were told by some other's that our banner was the best they had seen all day they also described the banner that they would have.

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Star wars - 1986

One T.V. advert for SDI shown late on a news programme of a child in the garden with a rainbow like shield.
 

OXFAM's "Hunger for change" - November 1985

November 1985  OXFAM's "Hunger for change" which was a very well publicised national sponsored Fast in aid of the starving in Africa, they fasted for up to about 36 hours although some people in other parts of the Country fasted for a week.
 

Widen the Web - December 1985

In December a dozen or so women from T/W took part in "Widen the Web" at Greenham. Maura, Paula, and Sue (lives over the Chemist in Grosvenor Road) Where arrested behind the wire, so on 6 January 8 of us plus the three women drove over to Newbury Magistrates Court. They were fined £15 +£10 costs, £30+£10, and £15 no costs respectively, but where allowed to speak Maura was marvellous (I guess you appreciate how unsettling being in court is) after cross examination which proceed without drama Maura walked from the dock to the witness stand, and on the way said quite casually in her usual way "this is quite nerve racking you known" which provoked a sympathetic we understand from the Magistrates, and then she spoke, and quoted from Earl Mountbatten, and an INLAW book. I think she got over the trying to prevent a greater injustice bit well.

Although most of the women said they would not pay the fine the Magistrates said that the fine would be passed to there local court to collect this could mean that the court orders bailiffs to collect it. This is a new ploy that has occurred once already else where. One of the women Spartacus (that was the book she was reading) who lives permanently at Greenham was sent down for a week, and fined £50 she had decide that she was cold her clothes were wet through, and she wanted a fortnight inside but could quite happily stay in till Easter. She said she would ignore the procedure just sit down in the dock and read her book, and tell the magistrates to F**K off if they did not send her down, which is what she duly did.

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Three Santa's dance on a sub at Faslane

Mean while unknown to us at the time Mike spent Christmas at the Faslane Peace Camp he spent Christmas Eve, and Christmas Day inside the Submarine base. Mike a sick women, and a spastic man (he had a disabled arm) went over the first perimeter fence a child could get over that one, then they walked to the next fence finding a ladder on the way. so over that fence, and they tried to get into a hut the doors were locked so they tried to get in down the chimney and fell off the roof into some bushes (all three were in red Santa suits with white beards), Mike believes that they were heard and seen a number of times but not believed. They then hide in a new large diameter Sewage pipe they tried to keep quite but said things, and started laughing then tried to silence them selves with "shoosh" until 23.59 when they came out of there pipe, and walked towards the high security Red Zone Fence where they found a oil drum against the fence. Over that fence and they ran past the guard box onto the Obin an old diesel submarine they left an old sock with some fruit on the conning tower (I had given Mike an old pare to leave inside the base a week before) next the three went onto the HMS Conqueror (the one that sank the Belgrano at the beginning of the Falklands conflict), and danced for a while. they then started on there way to the Polaris dock (there where two sub's supposed to be in then), and on there way they were stopped by two highly intoxicated guard's the three took there bear cans from the guard's. The guards told them that if they had got much further the guards over there would have shot them they don't care you know. They were put in the guard box where they waved at people going out of the base in coaches, and there waves where returned. it took about 2 hours before the local cop's came and arrested them. He told the Courier "we use whit against weapons".

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Getting very cold - 1986

On 6 February a Dozen of us took part in the very big, and successful sit down blockade of Molesworth. I don't known the CND estimate for the day but guess it could be of the order of 8000 people young, and old all prepared to be arrested. My neighbour Horace went with us as well, unfortunately we left the Crowborough group stranded with a poorly maintained hire mini bus at Molesworth. I don't think anyone could face them now. See my report for "Cuttings and Snippings" our new local CND magazine following.

TW-CND Part in the CND Blockade of Molesworth on 6 Fe., By Andrew Lohmann.

Before going on the Blockade all those intending to take part went to the NVDA workshop the week before. It is important to prepare for what is likely to happen, and decide what we all intend doing. We also talked about our reasons for taking part my personal reason is because Cruise is designed for First Use Only, and cannot be described as "also defensive" I can't see that anyone could approve of it.

We left Tunbridge Wells at approximately 1.45 AM Thursday morning in a convoy of two minibuses, and a car. One of the Minibuses was from Crowborough, we took 12 from T/W, and 3 from Tonbridge. The last main town before Molesworth was Huntington we went around it about three times because the road signs were covered in snow, we stopped the other side of Huntington at about 4 AM, plenty of time we thought. When we got close to Molesworth the police were very helpful appearing to send us around the houses in fact it was a fairly direct rout, We eventually parked in a road along with all the other Blockaders, and were registered by CND who wanted to know about spare seats. We were told to walk one and a half miles (there are 2 miles to every CND mile) to Cockbrock Gate which took nearly one and a half hours so we eventually arrived at about 6.45, and sat down with Blockaders that had already arrived the blockade was already about 100 meters from the gate, we had hoped to get there before six. Because of the large number's it seemed pointless for our drivers to stand back so we all sat down together. The CND estimate was 5000 people at 9 AM after that time people were coming to replace those that had arrived early so the numbers did not increase much after that time.

Most of us managed to stay some moving of to get warm, and coming back later until midday when the remaining walked along the Bridle Way to Peace Gate.

The partially built Chapel behind the Hesiltine wire that divides the peace camp is quite striking. Mike (CND Santa on the sub's) has been living at the camp for about two weeks he intends staying there or at Faslane permanently. A small group decided to stay until the end letting the minibus return at about 2.30 PM, in the event those that were left tried to repair the Crowborough minibus, we gave up at about 2.40 PM, and went home not taking part in the final 3 PM ending either.

All in all the day was extremely successful. I heard of only one lorry turning up to go into the base, and it made no attempt at getting in. CND maintained the sit down and Blockaded for 9 Hours as planed, and whatever the total numbers that day the message was clear that thousand's of ordinary people were prepared to be arrested to prevent a greater crime.
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Ash Wednesday

On Monday 10 Feb. Val had another of her last minute ideas. She went with Lynn the following day into the Army Recruiting Office to obtain some new or old recruiting posters to burn the following day Ash Wednesday, needless to say they did not think that was appropriate but Val was able to put over the bit about planning to kill women children etc., and the officer asked for her leaflets (to burn no doubt). On Wednesdays a small group of us burnt a cardboard fighter plain from a cereal packet, and a Newspaper recruiting advert on the steps of the Recruiting Office.

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Snow Ball

Although no one from T/W took part the last snowball (increasing numbers of people cutting wire) at the beginning of January was very successful Bruce Kent was arrested going prepared to do criminal damage this was filmed along with people cutting the wire and shown on T.V. It came over as an acceptable thing to do.


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