On Saturday June 1st 1985. The combined forces of the state gathered to attack several hundred members of a peace convoy heading to the 14th Stonehenge festival in Wiltshire. Their was carnage and mayhem as the marginalised and dispossessed were brutally targeted and beaten by a police force taking orders from the Thatcher Government the most repressive and right wing Government of the 20th Century. A horrible time, a bit like today, where people who lived on societies edges were attacked for being different.
In what has become known as the Battle of the Beanfield, people were beaten and bloodied because they refused to conform or bow down to a rotten system, and had decided to try and live by their own set of alternative values. Who simply wanted to gather under the stones to celebrate their lives, sing and dance. The intensity of the violence was shocking. with women and children being forced out of their homes, and in some cases whilst still inside their homes, they were savagely ripped apart. The overall cost of this operation was a staggering £5 miillion. The media of the time played their part too, with footage of the most extreme police violence being subsequently lost, and the subsequent demonising of the traveller lifestyle.
We should never forget, this bitter bit of our social history. It marked a turning point after wapping, and the miners strike in the supression of our civil liberties. A dark day for justice and freedom.Echoes can be seen in recent history, the eviction of the residents of Dale Farm.
Good links here for more on this story
The Levellers - Battle of the Beanfield
Hawkwind - Ghost Dance