Protest Camps presents at ‘Greenham Remembered’

On Sunday Anna Feigenbaum spoke at ‘Greenham Remembered,’ a 30th anniversary event celebrating the lives and legacies of Greenham women.   Anna’s presentation focused on UK protest camps since the 1980s, drawing out parallels between camps and describing how strategies and tactics can travel across and between movements.

In the 1980s the Greenham model of camping at the site of nuclear arms spread around the world. Inspired by Greenham, women’s (and mixed gender) peace camps were set up in countries including Ireland, Italy, Denmark, The Netherlands, Hondurus, Kenya, Australia, the United States and Canada.  As participants of the Puget Sound Women’s Peace Camp in Washington State recall, it was the success and dedication of Greenham Women that got them going in the Summer of 1983:

“Fiona’s enthusiasm and first-hand experience [at Greenham] were curcial in gaining audiences. She urged an immediate start to the  camp … We wrote a unity statement and formed a collective structure with committees on site selection, logistics, outreach and fundraising. Women worked feverishly toward the goal of opening the Camp in early summer—to coincide with the opening of the women’s peace camp in Seneca [New York].”

Protest campers also learn tricks of the trade from each others’ imaginative use of resources. For example, Greenham women learnt how to make benders from travellers who passed through the protest site during the Peace Convoy in 1982. Greenham Women then passed along this knowledge to Anti-Roads protesters a decade later. Today benders are still used at Protest Camps and outdoor festivals around the world.

The ‘Greenham Remembered’ event drew over 50 people, including a number of Greenham alumni, as well as young feminist activists, independent media makers, researchers, CND campaigners and those just keen to learn more about Greenham’s important role in history.

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