Rosemarie Cawson

Story Number:Story-038
Themes: 1980s, Greenham Common, networks, nuclear, Quakers

So I have now ended up in a care home and I’m very old, but I remember, and we have just worked out how old I was when I attended Greenham (Greenham Common), well visited Greenham and I was a sudden (?? Inaud.) quite elderly (laughing) then and I was um sixty well sixty four

Interviewer: sixty four

And, of course the people who were camping actually at Greenham were youngsters, young women, very determined and very admirable and although I was didn’t camp I heard a lot about them and we was kind of in touch with them by writing or they were in the news and we always made ourselves aware what was um going on there. As it happens I was at school in Newbury and um the actual date when I was there I only know about thirty years ago but what happened was – we heard that coaches are hired everywhere in in Britain where women got together and these women on the very same day were taken to – Greenham Common. Goodness knows how many. But we’ve holded we held hands and we were nine miles long round the camp, round the wire of the camp and we all held jam jars with a candle in our hand and for thirty minutes we were silent, was complete hush and all facing inside the – camp looking and the soldiers looking back at us, American soldiers wouldn’t they be. American? Oh yes and ah – half an hour gone we had the lit candle, we suddenly made a terrific noise eh, ah, well I can show you, maybe I can show you the noise now, but it put your hand to your mouth: woohoo woo, woohoo woo, woohoo woo, well can you imagine all those women after half an hours silence it was really stirring (laugh) and the soldiers were (laugh) quite astonished and ah, it so new to me at the time because I’d never been to anything like a protest march (laugh) anywhere. Well, it all went very well and then suddenly there was a decision no not suddenly, they I think they’d made a decision before that they would cut the wire and they had lots of wire cuts, they had bought them all over the place and some of them climbed actually also, climbed up the fence and – that’s when police came in on horseback and – that’s when we were sort of out of a peaceful area if you could call the whole kaboosh a peaceful area and I said to one of the women, we were so peaceful, why did you do that why did you suddenly ah provoke the police? And the astonished answer came, which I never expected, we did it, in order to get um noticed.

Recorded by Carmen Talbot 15.10.2018

Transcribed by Carolyn Purslow.