Geert Lovink on Wed, 25 Sep 96 10:34 METDST

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nettime: news from the UK


The summer kicked off with the M41 job on 23rd July.  10, 000 people dancing
on the motorway, chilling out on the central reservation, planting trees in
the fast lane, and twenty foot skirted ladies grooving to the sound of
happiness from the hard shoulder!  It was great to see the Met and pals
powerless yet again to put a stop to the spontaneous coincidence of people
reclaiming their space.  The post-party response was excellent - the
answerphone/postbox was jammed with exuberant nice ones and whens the
next party? for weeks after.
A few criticisms were raised:  about the litter and DIY toilet 
facilities created on the adjacent housing estate, and about there not
being enough variety of music and activities.  The litter question is a
sore point. Some people did hand out binbags and collect litter at the end
of the day but these bags were subsequently ripped open!  The DIY toilet
facilities were cleared up the following day and one of the reasons that
was necessary, was due to the fact that the loos were among items
confiscated by police on the way to the street party, along with the
bouncy castles and other party pieces such as PAs for alternative (ie
not rave/techno!) music!

On the morning of Friday 2nd August, the RTS office and one persons private
home were raided by police who seized computers as well as various personal
effects.  At the moment it seems as though at least one person is to be
charged with conspiracy to cause criminal damage to the M41.
Don't worry about the computer - the database was PGP=92d so there's no 
chance of them having got hold of your details!  Pretty Good Privacy
(PGP), is a special means of encrypting any information on your computer
that you don't want certain people to get hold of.  For details of how you
can use this yourselves, call the RTS office.



A 3 Day Event including a massive parade, party and action against the CJA,
JSA, Scotland Yard and life as we know it is happening at the end of
September!  Reclaim The Streets, Advance Party, Freedom Network and other
grassroots groups are working in solidarity with the Liverpool Dockers who
have been fighting for a year against 'casualisation', after Merseyside
Docks and Harbour Company sacked 500 workers. Not only is that a bit crap
but there's the environmental issue i.e. legit dockers are choosy about 
what cargo they handle - no toxics, no nuclear waste - while the scabs
will handle anything for =A32 quid an hour!

Anyway, we're fighting back and forging links with STOP THE CLAMPDOWN,
RECLAIM THE FUTURE on 28, 29, 30 September in Liverpool so come up and play!
The plan for the weekend is a massive march/party through Liverpool on
Saturday 28th meeting at Myrtle Parade, Liverpool at 12 noon.  The day after
there will be relaxation, workshops, direct action training and
entertainment and on Monday 30th there will be a mass action, meeting 10am
at Seaforth Docks, Liverpool.  For transport/accommodation details, ring us
here at the office on 0171 281 4621 nearer the time.



Birmingham Street Party happened on 17th August as well as another one the
same day in Bath.  The Brighton Street Party turned into a march after
police stormed in and arrested about 90 party-goers on a random
we-don't-like-your-face-and-what's-that-poem-you're-reading basis!
Cambridge then held a very successful Street Party on 14th September, with
over 1,000 people attending.
October 19 Manchester RTS - meet 1pm Albert Square (ends 6pm)???? Party and
info help line 0161 226 9904

In London, we got active in support of the Tube Workers.  There was a
special Critical Mass on 7th August followed by an occupation of the London
Underground Headquarters where an opportunity was taken to have a chat with
Chairman Peter Ford. as to his involvement in the exploitation of his tube
workers.  There were 11 arrests but no charges as yet.  The FIT (Forward
Intelligence - special branch) team were there - tru to form-  to take

People have been getting active all over London with a West London, North
London and South London Critical Mass adding to the Hackney and Central
London Masses. On Friday 30th August there was a critical mass in Oxford,
followed by, you guessed it, another Street Party.   There was also a road
block in West London on 25th July.

Anti-JSA (Job Seekers Allowance) demos are kicking off nationwide - the
changes in benefit rules that will come into operation on October 7th are
going to affect a great number of people involved in campaigning. There are
actions planned nationwide for the 7th.

The second phase of work on the Newbury Bypass has begun.  There were six
days of protest at the Flim-Flam Festival 25th to 30th August and, as ever,
they need support down there.  For info ring Third Battle of Newbury 01635
The A30 camps down in Fairmile, Devon,  also need support a.s.a.p.  They
know for certain that they are due to start building the road on 1st October
and it is very likely that the evictions will be in late September.  Their
no is 01404  815729.


The press have been having a blue fit recently about the infiltration of
RTS by a 'lunatic anarchist fringe'.
The summer's activities have successfully destroyed the myth of single 
issue politics. No issue exists in isolation from other issues,  as they
all have a common cause: the state and the fatcats. Whenever issues are
brought together and similarities identified the media always insinuates
some 'outside agitatators' as the cause behind any action that lies
outside their rigidly defined stereotypes.


The Motor Show, this year 'celebrating' the centenary of the motor car, 
will be held at the National Exhibition Centre in Birmingham.  Birmingham
Reclaim The Streets are currently planning an action for the first day of
the show, Tuesday 15 October.  Anyone who wants to be involved is invited
to contact Birmingham RTS on 0121 449 5452. ACTION POSSIBLY CANCELLED CALL


It's really BORING but we're BROKE!  The Street Party swallowed a
couple of grand and dosh is needed for Stop the Clampdown, Reclaim The
Future!  If you can spare a bit of cash or preferably wads of cash, can
send us some stamps, or are a fund-raiser in the making, contact us at the
office or send big cheques to Reclaim The Streets, PO Box 9656, London, N4


If you want to subscribe to or contact Earth First! Action Update which is a
monthly roundup of direct action in  the U.K., ring 0171 561 9146 or send
to PO Box 9656, London N4 4JY. Or you can be added to the list of email
subscribers by sending your email address to them at: or check out the EF! website on:

RTS also have a Website that you should visit (just in case you haven't
already) on:



Hanson are to be holding an EGM, (shareholders meeting) on September 25th at
10am: Four Seasons Hotel, Hamilton Place (nr Hyde Park / Marble Arch tube
station) London.Show them how you feel ! Assemble 9.30am outside the hotel.
Hanson are the people responsible for environmental nightmares such as
Whatley Quarry in Somerset.


A book about the Battle of Twyford Down and the M3.. Were you there?
Accounts, photographs, personal archives etc. needed. Can you help? Special
Meeting and exhibition will be held in Winchester as well as a full moon
picnic on St. Katherines Hill. Sat. October 12th 1996. Phone Alan 01962
868763 at the end of September for details. Please pass the word around,
thanks. Friends of Twyford Down.

The Northern Earth First! regional gathering  will be taking place 2nd-3rd
of  November. Please get in touch if you can help organise, give workshops,
have any input /ideas or are simply interested in attending. Tents and food
for two days will be needed. Contact: 0113 262 9365.

The Hunger Gathering is happening in Rome 8-17th November. It runs parrallel
to the World Food Summit. The food insecurity campaign is concerned with
many issues including biodiversity, biotechnology, TNC=92s, farmers,
indiginous peoples=92 rights etc. There will be workshops and actions. For
more info. transport details contact ASEED Europe, PO Box 92066, 1090 AB
Amsterdam, Netherlands or tel Manchester: 0161 225 4863

Ogoni / Shell

Nearly one year after the execution of Ken Saro-Wiwa and the other
environmental and human rights activists in Nigeria, campaigners across the
world are preparing for an anniversary week of events from 4-10 November.
The Ogoni are calling for pickets of Shell garages and other solidarity
actions against the company. The focus is on pressing for the release of
nineteen more Ogonis who face the same charges after challenging Shell just
like Saro-Wiwa. Suggested evevnts include candlelit vigils on Friday 8th
November (everywhere) and big demos / actions on Saturday 9th November
(everywhere), along with occupations, mock hangings, workshops, videos and
literature readings. Grassroots activists in one country will be shutting
down all Shell garages nationally, so at least picket your local!

Details of your actions can be included in an A3 Broadsheet which will go
out nationally and internationally. The next DELTA Newsletter (#2) will be
sent out in mid-October and will include all the latest news and background
on Ogoni, Shell and Nigeria. Over 1,000 copies will be sent to Ogoni and
elsewhere in Nigeria, so to help morale, please send DELTA news of what you
have been doing in solidarity since this April - before September 30th. Any
actions you are planning for November should also be sent to DELTA for
inclusion in the newsletter and broadshhet as soon as possible.  Further
details from DELTA, BOX  Z, 13 Biddulph Street, Leicester, LE2 1BH, tel/fax
0116 255 3223.


Reclaim The Streets meets every Tuesday evening at 7pm at the Battlebridge
Centre, Battlebridge Road (behind Kings Cross train station).  The venue
will be changing very soon, so give us a ring beforehand on 0171 281 4621.

Reclaim the Streets Tel: 0171 281 4621
P.O. Box 9656 London N4 4JY

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