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Blockading Gleneagles
cream | 08.07.2005 17:02 – http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2005/07/317506.html

At about 6 am Tuesday morning around 50 protesters, including sambaband, jumped down on the M-9 motorway near Sterling, direction Gleneagles.

Over them a banner drops down from the bridge, saying: Queers block the G8. At the road another banner gets unfolded. No Deportations! it shouts in pink. The banner starts its way down south, accompanied by the sound of the samba, intending to meet and stop the traffic. What the protesters at this point don't know is that they are not going to meet any cars, except the police vans, as blockades further south has already stopped the motorway traffic, as well as in the other direction blockades are spread out along the entire motorway from Glasgow and Edinburgh up towards Gleneagles. Together with blockades on other crucial traffic points it builds a very effective blockade of the entire Gleneagles area.

After a short while the police starts appearing and the group retreats back to the bridge, starting collecting old wood and other materials for barricading.

Slowly more people start showing up on the bridge, some enthusiastic supporting, some shouting words in disagreement. Running over the fields, a determined group of other protesters joins in on the road, to the dancing and building of barricades.

After around two hours on the road the group hears news from another group blockading at the next bridge north. This group wants to move further towards Gleneagles, taking the next bridge, and in coordination with others start a wave of moving blockades rolling upwards, closer to the G8 meeting.

The group starts to walk at around the same time as the police decides to go forward, showing up in the distance with lines of riot cops on the one side of the road, and queues of police cars on the other.

The now close to 100 protesters head towards the group under the next bridge, with 30-50 police vans moving forward behind them only stopping for a few minutes to remove the barricades from the road. After that the police speed up their cars and the protesters start to run in attempt to reach the other group. Before they succeed in that though, the police cars are covering the whole stretch between the two bridges. Riot cops jump out from the vans and the protesters retreat over the barbedwire to a field at the side. While the police in steps move towards the protesters, they move further back from the motorway. Only two persons don't manage to get off the field as a disturbed herd of cows run into them, one ending up with a broken leg.

The group is now totally off the motorway, part of them having reached a local road, as three police vans rush up to the side of them, managing to arrest as far as we know at least between 25 and 30 people, the rest escaping through the woods or over nearby fields.

During and after the arrest several caravans of more police vans drove on to the M-9, in the direction of other blockades still maintaining their protest positions on the roads. The network of blockades turned out to be pretty resistant as some of them stayed on well into the afternoon. As well the police found it so difficult to handle the situation that they offered deals to the protesters, such as dropping charges in exchange for voluntarily dissolving the blockades.

The overall goal of the day, to disrupt the G8 summit, seemed to be largely reached in minds of many protesters, as they managed to blockade the transport network so effectively that many of the delegates could not make it to Gleneagles and thereby parts of the G8 meeting were made not to happen that day.


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