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From: "Heather"
Date: Sun, 17 May 1998 21:21:41 +0100

Birmingham RTS - Greg's Report

Still buzzing as I arrive home after tonight's party in Birmingham. As the leaders of the worlds eight whatever nations gathered to decide their idea of the fate of the world, we decided to have a fucking great street party in the middle of the town they were doing it at! Don't know the chapter and verse of how Reclaim the Streets pulled it off this time, though I was there when the first tripod went up. The tripodder suspended therein was soon roped up a "captured" policewoman's hat to great cheers from the assembled partygoers. The authorities were outfoxed yet again and the wildest assembly of highly-charged eco-warriors dressed in drag and as clowns staged a stomping party in Birmingham's famous city centre Bullring. The party is the battlefield and we pick the terrain. It wasn't until past ten o'clock at night that the police finally advanced en masse upon the sound system, leading to a slow wind-down of the event. The whole city centre was now sealed off During this stage I wandered through police ranks a couple of times, going from "our territory" into that which they still controlled, and back again. We stopped shortly after last exiting our territory to tend to a young victim of the day's only usage of CS gas. He was suffering badly and it was moving and educational. As we left the area, with a motley crew of half a dozen others, we had a ranked masse of police advancing 20 yards behind us, in a strangely Roman fashion - having to time their gait to the speed with which I was pushing myself up the medium gradient. Our group constantly taunted the approaching police, wiggling bare asses at them as they followed us. As we came out of the traffic contraflows and reached our first possible exit point at a pedestrian crossing, half of us peeled left and half right. I stopped in the middle of the island and watched the ranks stride purposefully forward, now with nobody in front of them, and wondered mischievously what would have happened had we fell into place behind them and continued the rattling. The locals we now passed were very curious and asked us more than once what had been going on. I kept replying that I thought this was the Birmingham annual policeman's walk; presumably some olde English custom.

The party? You had to be there to feel that power. It was more human power than any of those superpower leaders tap into an entire lifetime. I've been to a few good parties, but would have traded any of them whole for five minutes at this one.

from the heart of the dance floor


from Greg Sams, forwarded on by Banner Heather - many thanx

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