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Date: Thu, 5 Aug 1999 22:58:41 +0100 (BST)
From: "SchNEWS" (
Subject: SchNEWS 223, Friday 6th August 1999

Eclipse Parties - paranoid reactions


Cornwall is bracing itself for the worst pillaging and raping since the Vikings. Police have issued warnings of a New Age Invasion complete with funny hats and free-love! Landowners have been advised to turn down any requests to camp as "kindliness can be costly", so if some harmless hippie should meander onto their land they ought to block all routes, alert neighbours through the cunning early warning scheme and document all vehicles using photographic and video evidence, noting damage caused to crops or land, so...remember your country code and follow the SchNEWS free-party guidelines, available from our stall at various festivals. Devon and Cornwall Constabulary assure us they are liaising with other forces, presumably they mean police forces not spiritual forces.

If you were planning to check out Sasha and Digweed at 'Totality' you may be amused to hear that licencees will permit camping and liquor but NO DANCING! Dancing? That's outrageous, will you debauched bunch of degenerates stop at nothing? So if you're looking for an alternative, SchNEWS has received confirmation from NASA that the place to be to experience totality is Iran - yeah man, the infamous party place where you can expect to be welcomed with open arms by the old Ayatollahs. Forget the balaclavas but all you loose Western women had better remember your veils. Turns out that the South West has a groovie 45%-60% chance of cloud cover which will only enhance the visuals for psychedelic enthusiasts. Cornwall's eclipse co-ordinator ("move the Moon twenty centimetres to the left, please") Gage Williams claims that a little cloud cover will make the eclipse effects more stunning: "Those patiently waiting suddenly saw a circular sharp-edged shadow racing towards them like an express train. There was also the optical illusion where the clouds looked as though they were falling on them." What was he on?

The Friends of the Lizard, a crack team of party poopers, and the main opposition group to The Lizard Festival, have said they are investigating every possible avenue to stop the festival despite it already getting a licence. They are organising an around-the-clock photographic and video monitoring team from inside and outside the event. How quaint!

English Heritage and councils are hypeing their concern about the threat of a Tribal Gathering taking place at Men-an-Tol, near Madron. More than 30,000 acres in Penwith alone have been barricaded to prevent vehicles stopping. Countryside officer, Mike Rosendale claims that in their 4,000 years of existence some of the neolithic sites have never faced such a level of risk. They fail to explain why free party people need to destroy their sacred sites when English Heritage (not to mention industry and roads) do it much more effectively as we have seen through their recent treatment of the Woodhenge at Holme (SchNEWS 213). Makes you wonder whether the real problem is that such gatherings are free, bringing zero revenue to those who like to believe they 'own' these sites. Barriers are also being erected around the Merry Maiden's stones, on Viscount Falmouth's land, and the Boscawen-Un stone circles. Codenamed Operation Obscure, Devon and Cornwall Police have advised landowners to block routes leading to their private land with boulders in an attempt to discourage illicit raves.

Anyone who's still bemused by all this Eclipse business check-out


So you thought you would be experiencing the eclipse on the chaos of the dance floor, to the sound of your favourite d.j's and bands, grooving with all your friends.....not if you follow the advice of Britain's chief medical oficer of health, Liam Donaldson who recommends the best way to view the eclipse is "on television" - well hold on to your party hats, what a crazy guy! His fears about the risks of eye damage are substantiated by the experience of Bob Brown, 35, from Manchester who suffered scarring of the retina during the 1984 partial eclipse. Bob said "I just glanced up at sun because it looked a bit strange...and carried on waiting for my train". Basically, you will fuck your eyes if you look directly at the sun during the eclipse, the eclipse specs work well and welding glass is good too. Film negatives are no good for looking at a permanent thermonuclear explosion, 400 times the size of the moon, 90 million miles away.


Mr A Robbins, of Truro, wrote to his local newspaper asking for the eclipse to be cancelled. He said that now Cornwall is now finally on the national and international map(!), Cornish people should be content with what has already been achieved and not be too greedy. He added: "Indeed, we might need to move heaven and earth: so be it. We got Objective One status, surely we can do this too. Whatever they do in Devon and the remainder of those European parts, let Cornwall have no eclipse whatever. Cornwall should lead the way!". Maybe we could all sign a petition and send it to our maker.

road protests 1999   |   road protests (current)   |   movement links