the pork-bolter
Birthday special, October 2007

Revolting Worthing - ten years of action and protest

As a special birthday gift for our readers, we have gone back over the last ten years of our newsletter and stitched together this timeline of protests and acts of rebellion from 1997 to 2007. Other stuff must have gone on, but this is what we happen to have recorded. And obviously political dissent did not begin ten years ago - but that’s where our files begin. Worthing must have been revolting for hundreds of years - otherwise why would its inhabitants have been given the rather unsavoury nickname of “porkbolters”? And we are sure that in decades to come, even in the unlikely event of this newsletter ever ceasing publication, Worthing folk will always continue to be a gloriously pig-headed bunch who will never shut up and do what they are told...


1997

August. First Eco-Festival at Homefield Park, Worthing.

September 20. Critical Mass in protest at death of cyclist Dannie Plant on A259 between Shoreham and Worthing. 90 people reclaimed the streets.

October. Issue number one of The Porkbolter hits the streets.

October 16. Protest outside McDonald’s in Montague Place in support of the McLibel Two, sued for libel by the greedy global burger chain.

1998

March 4. Students of Northbrook College in Durrington, Broadwater, Union Place and Shoreham stage day of action against tuition fees.

March. Porkbolter calls for mass boycott of borough council elections.

March 28. Protest on Worthing seafront, featuring children’s cycle ride and mobile cycle lane, against ban on cycling on prom.

May. Porkbolter announces it has won election, with 69.8% supporting the stay-away campaign and only 30.2% taking part.

June 20. Picket of McDonald’s in Worthing in solidarity with the McLibel Two.

June 27. Big Brother’s Birthday ‘celebrates’ two years of CCTV in Worthing town centre, following Worthing Herald revelation that crime had gone up 19% since spy cameras were brought in.

August 8. Benefit gig at Inn on the Prom for Worthing Eco-Festival.

August 31. Second Eco-Festival at Homefield Park takes place despite last-minute bid by Ron Noakes, ex-copper and chairman of Worthing Rotary Fair, to ban it.

November. First Worthing Anarchist Teapot squatted cafe offers free tea, coffee and info in Buckingham Road, Worthing. A second venue is then occupied in nearby Caledonian Place.

1999

January 10. Worthing contingent joins ‘End of the Road Reunion’ protest at Newbury, after controversial and environmentally disastrous bypass is opened. Protest blocks road for several hours.

January. Following two evictions, Worthing Anarchist Teapot takes to the streets with first of long series of weekly Saturday stalls in Montague Place, offering free hot drinks and info.

March 21. ‘The Land is Ours’ mass trespass in grounds of Arundel Castle, reclaiming the right to roam.

June 1. Video screening of McLibel: Two Worlds Collide at Paiges on Worthing seafront.

June 18. Worthing activists join historical 10,000-strong Carnival Against Capitalism in City of London.

June 26. Second Big Brother’s Birthday protest against CCTV expansion and Tony Blair’s announcement of a new “harsh and authoritarian regime” (his words).

July. Worthing Anarchist Teapot launches successful campaign against plans to build over south side of Montague Place.

September 4. Worthing Green Fair, Beach House Green, plus Critical Mass bike ride.

September 18. Worthing Genetix Alliance stages anti-GM food protest outside Safeway’s, Worthing.

2000

March 7. Talk and video from people involved in Seattle protests at meeting above Paiges in Marine Parade.

March 11. Protest against ‘Prevention of Terrorism’ Bill in Montague Place, Worthing, plus opening of Terrorist Tearooms squat infoshop/cafe at former Steyne Bookshop in High Street. Tearooms will remain open for nine days. Further protests on March 17 and 18, with campaigners rightly predicting new laws will be used against protesters.

May 1. Worthing contingent takes part in Mayday Guerrilla Gardening in Parliament Square, London.

July 1. Big Brother’s Birthday protest in Worthing, featuring birthday cake presentation to Worthing Police Station.

September 2. Worthing Green Fair, Beach House Gardens.

September. Copies of slick spoof newspaper ‘Financial Crimes’ bamboozle commuters at Worthing station in early-morning give-away action.

October 16. Protest outside McDonald’s in Montague Place.

2001

January. Porkbolter teams up with Mark Thomas TV show to gain £2,000 funding for Thomas a Becket First School after Allied Dunbar ‘scam’.

February. Talk on anarchism at meeting above Paiges, Marine Parade.

May 1. Worthing contingent joins Mayday mayhem in London with its own autonomous protest outside pro-business Institute of Directors (‘Institute of Greed’) in Pall Mall.

August 27. Worthing’s pro-cannabis ‘Big Smoke’ at Beach House Green.

September 11. Worthing contingent joins protests against DSEI arms fair in London, as jets crash into twin towers in New York.

September 20. Fundraising gig at The Lounge Bar (now The Rest), in aid of The Cowley Club in Brighton and The Porkbolter.

October 13. Protest against war on Afghanistan, in Montague Place, Worthing.

December. Porkbolter reveals direct action campaign is being planned to save Durrington’s Titnore Woods from development.

December. Protect Our Woodland! is set up by campaigners against Titnore development.

2002

May 1. Worthing contingent stages protest outside Carlyle Group offices in Berkeley Square, Mayfair, as part of Mayday protests. The private equity firm links the US Government, arms firms, CIA, Tories, Bush family and Bin Laden family.

May 26. First Save Titnore Woods! protest sees 350 people block Titnore Lane, in the face of incredibly heavy and hostile policing.

July 1. ‘No to Asda’ protest at Worthing Town Hall.

September 1. Protest/delegation visits Somerset family, Titnore landowners, off A27 at Durrington.

October. After residents’ protests, Worthing council turns down 90-home development on downland at Beeches Avenue.

October. First Worthing Green Social meeting held at Wheatsheaf pub, Richmond Road, Worthing.

November 1. Porkbolter fifth birthday gig at Vintner’s Parrot, Warwick Street

2003

January. Worthing Against War set up in opposition to Iraq invasion.

February 8. 350 people join anti-war march from Montague Place to war memorial in run-up to two-million strong anti-war demo in London on February 15.

March 5. Anti-war protests by students at Worthing College in Bolsover Road and Worthing High School in South Farm Road, where police guard gates to stop students getting out.

March 8. Worthing Against War stages die-in in Worthing town centre, complete with wailing siren.

March 20. War on Iraq starts. Angry evening protest blocks roads in Worthing town centre as police resources are stretched thin across UK. Followed by string of weekly town protests.

March 29. Anti-war Day at Friends Meeting House, Mill Road.

April 5. Rock Against War gig at Vintner’s Parrot, Warwick Street.

May 1. Worthing activists picket Crown Agents’ HQ in London before joining main Mayday protests against global capitalism and wars.

May 3. Anarchists from Brighton and Worthing protest outside Wilkinson’s in Guildbourne Centre, Worthing, against firm’s use of prison slave labour.

May 24. Worthing Against War protest against cluster bombs, Worthing town centre.

June 5. Anti-globalisation gig, Vintner’s Parrot.

August. Victory for Arundel protest camp against proposed A27 bypass-bypass through woodland, as government halts scheme for environmental reasons.

September 10. Worthing contingent join blockade of DSEI arms fair in London. Terrorism Act is used on protesters and one Worthing teenager is attacked and kicked by police for no apparent reason.

September 13. Protest outside exhibition on Titnore development at Durrington Community Centre, complaining about lack of promised public meeting on issue.

September 20. Worthing Against War protests against Israel’s apartheid wall, Worthing town centre.

November 19 and 20. Worthing protesters travel to London to oppose visit of George W Bush in massive display of public hostility to warmongering US president.

2004

March 2. Campaigners against Tetra masts speak at Worthing eco-action meeting, The Downview, West Worthing, followed later in month by picket of O2 shop in Montague Street.

April 19. Angry opposition to Titnore development plans at public meeting in Pavilion Theatre, Worthing.

July. Black flag flies over Worthing as popular 23Topia anti-G8 squatted social centre opens for 23 days at former Twenties/3TO nightclub at Teville Gate, a year ahead of Gleneagles summit. Includes Week of Resistance with critical mass cycle ride and...

July 10. Save Titnore Woods! march from Montague Place, to Teville Gate.

November. Porkbolter informed by anonymous source that that mysterious ‘POWWOW’ graffiti appearing across Worthing, and baffling police, stands for ‘Prisoners of Worthing Writing on Walls’.

November 5. Worthing campaigners join march on Wiston House, Steyning, where secretive Wilton Park capitalist summit is being held by the Foreign Office.

2005

February. New website set up to cover protest activities in Worthing, Brighton and South Coast. www.southcoast.indymedia.org.uk

April 30. Critical Mass cycle ride against climate change and the G8, from Steyne Gardens.

May 3. Standing Up for Liberty is title of meeting including new Worthing NO21D anti-ID card group, Downview, West Worthing.

June 19. Protesters evicted from stormy meeting at Assembly Hall as Worthing council okays original Titnore plans.

June 23. First meeting of Worthing Alliance, forum for local campaigns, at The Rest, Bath Place.

July 1-8. Many Worthing people join huge (and vastly under-reported) protests against G8 in Scotland.

August. Broadwater residents defeat plans for O2 mast on Grove Lodge roundabout

September 4. Emergency Titnore rally at Northbrook Park, Durrington, culiminating in burning of John Prescott effigy in Titnore Lane, blocking traffic.

October 29. Draconian over-policing at Vigil for the Death of Democracy protest against Titnore development, A259 Northbrook College roundabout.

2006

May 5. Rally for Civil Rights by Worthing Civil Rights Group, Montague Place, Worthing.

May 28. Protest camp set up in Titnore Woods, in daring dawn occupation. Still there at time of writing. Regular support stalls held in town centre from that date onwards.

July 6. 100 people attend packed meeting at Charles Dickens pub, Heene Road, Worthing, addressed by Titnore campers.

August 12. Titnore Woods day of action with mass cycle ride and town protest.

October 7. Mass protest walk to Titnore Woods from Durrington rail station.

December. Titnore supporters collect Christmas food donations for camp in town centre.

2007

February 17. ‘Leave our Stall Alone’ protest against police harassment of Titnore info stall, ending at police station in Chatsworth Road. >May 2. ‘T-Day’ celebration of Camp Titnore’s first birthday, Worthing town centre.

July 24. Porkbolter calls for mass direct action to save Worthing Hospital, with hundreds of copies handed out at PCT ‘consultation’ meeting.

Sep 11. Worthing activists protest against DSEI arms fair, London.

Sep 15. Open Day at Camp Titnore.

October. The Porkbolter publishes diary of dissident events from last ten years and runs out of space round about here.


October 2007 issue


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