ASBO arrest @ Windsor Eco village

by nettleship

Yesterday our friend Simon was arrested under the first Olympic ASBO. Here is some background…

On Saturday we marched to Windsor to show an alternative to our “system of crisis” by starting an eco-village on derelict land on the Crown Estate. We intend to grow food, live sustainably and restore and build structures in a responsible way. In the spirit of The Diggers of 1649 we announced our bold plan publicly.

From the moment we set out from Syon Lane community allotment on Saturday we were tailed and followed by the police, photographed and generally harrassed in a passive aggressive manner. One of my fellow Diggers said that they were ‘alright’ but I pointed out that if a random person followed you on a walk for two days taking pictures of you, you might find it more than a little disconcerting.

The crown estate took out an injuction on ALL of the crown land in the whole of Windsor which, alhough still a civil matter, would make the process of having us removed by bailiffs or indeed arrested much quicker. We would also have been arrested for contempt of court and not tresspass which holds a much longer prison sentence.

Our plan A site turned out not to be disused, (read more about this on the Indymedia updates) which was a mistake on our part so we headed to plan B to be greeted by a crowd of cops and were marched out of Thames Valley into Surrey and Runnymead where we set up a temporary site for the night.

After the crazy rain, leaky tents and general madness of the last few days a few of us came back to town re-group and blog about what had happened. Simon and a few others headed into the woods on Crown Estate. We were going to meet with them later in the week and drum up interest for a second wave. Then at 2pm we received a call that Simon had been arrested under the terms of a previous Olympic ASBO which means he can be arrested and imprisoned for up to 5 years for entering ANY land in Britain without the permission of the owner. All for the dangerous activity of trying to stop a marshland being destroyed to make way for a Basketball court in Leyton.

So now we wait to see what happens with Simon – he is due to appear in Guildford Magistrates Court today – but the establishment has once again shown the lengths it will go to to protect its most valuable asset – the Land.

For more information about the weekends activites follow this link to Indymedia