HORIZON > comes from question 62
.to read or write comments.
The Newbury Bypass Factfile
This is an archive document. It is no longer being updated and the information it contains may now be out-of-date. For up-to-date news about current anti-road campaigns in the UK, check out the Road Block and Road Alert! websites.
The A34 Newbury Bypass was Britain 's most controversial road-building project and saw Britain 's biggest ever anti-road protest. Local campaigners battled against the road throughout the 1980s, their efforts culminating in a public inquiry in 1988 (with a minor follow-up inquiry in 1992). When the public inquiry found in favour of the road, there followed a spectacular campaign from 1994 to 1998 that took in every form of protest, from mass letter writing and European lobbying to non-violent direct action and criminal damage. The road may now be complete, but campaigners continue to highlight the extra traffic and development it has brought to Newbury.
What this website is... and what it's not
Various websites have covered the later stages of the campaign to stop the Newbury bypass, particularly the spectacular "direct action" protest that saw around 1000 people arrested. But although there is lots of information about Newbury on the Web, it is scattered about in many different places. This low-frills, high-content website ( deliberately designed as one black-and-white, easy-to-print page with no Java and few graphics to slow you down) attempts to bring it all together, explaining just why the Newbury bypass was so contentious, why people fought so hard against it, and what the fight was really all about.
The page is in two parts:
This second section is not a history of what happened at Newbury (and certainly not a definitive history). It is simply designed to be a starting point for students, researchers, and others interested in the Newbury campaigns. (See also tips for researchers.)
This site is an archive
This site was compiled (well, okay, thrown together) one day in 1998. It is no longer really being updated, though most of the broken links were fixed (yet again) in September 2004.
The Third Battle and FoE press releases still work and you can still find the Telegraph and Times articles online, but you'll need to go to their websites and search for each story individually (i.e. the links here won't take you straight to the stories). You may still be able to find the other documents too, but if the links are broken you'll have to go to Google and look for each one individually.
Please remember that this website doesn't aim to be anything other than a partial account of the long (and continuing) history of the Newbury bypass. There may appear to be a lot of information here; most of it is missing; thankfully, many stories will never be told, except in little gatherings of old friends, with much booze and laughter :)
This web page is dedicated to everyone who was involved in the fight to stop the Newbury bypass. Whatever you did, whenever you did it, and however long you did it for, you were part of something very important and very special. Thank you!
Big thanks to Andrew Wood for supplying the TBON press releases (and writing most of them in the first place).
Table of contents
Tips for researchers
If you are doing research into the Newbury bypass, the most important thing to remember is that the campaign didn't begin on 9th January 1996 or finish on 2nd April that year. Nothing could be more important in any account of Newbury than the 1996 protest. But that protest was just the filling in a very sizeable sandwich. Local people had been campaigning against the road for many years before that and are still campaigning on bypass-related developments today. Direct action had first taken place in 1994; the first arrest of the campaign also happened that year. Just a handful of examples show the scope of the campaign:
The Society for the Prevention of a Western Bypass (SPEWBY) fought a determined campaign in the 1980s, including a lengthy public inquiry in 1988.
News stories from the early 1990s show that Thames Valley Police anticipated a huge rise in accidents when the bypass opened (and this happened in reality).
Third Battle of Newbury was formed in February 1994.
There were protest camps on the bypass route (and an office in the town centre) by the summer of 1994.
In the Autumn of 1994, a concerted campaign to scrap the Newbury bypass persuaded Transport Secretary Dr Brian Mawhinney to put the road on hold.
There was a frantic period of preparation from July 1995 until January 1996 designed to ensure that the protest would be spectacular, memorable, and effective.
But just as the campaign didn't begin in 1996, not did it end when the final trees were cut down:
Protest camps remained on the route until 1997.
Also in 1997, the Green Party fought the general election on bypass-related issues.
European political issues were still being argued in 1998.
A detailed scientific monitoring project has been taking place throughout the road's construction to study its effects on the environment.
A reunion protest successfully closed the road in January 1999.
And even today, local campaigners continue to fight the money-spinning developments that made Newbury's road not just possible, but absolutely inevitable. Those traffic-generating developments ensure that, however much the Highways Agency argues to the contrary, there can be no ultimate benefit from the Newbury bypass except profit for the developers.
Finding information from newspapers on the web
By far the best news archive on the web, because it can be searched by keyword. If you cannot access the Daily Telegraph articles directly from here, you need to register for a user name at the Electronic Telegraph site and then do your own search for "Newbury bypass".
Unfortunately, The Guardian has a much more recent archive, so the many excellent articles by John Vidal and others written before 1998 are not available on the Internet.
Although The Times and Sunday Times has a good web archive going back to 1996 (and thus covering the Newbury protest), you have to pay for old articles.
A pay-as-you-go site, the Financial Times is quite good for finding information, but not much help in giving it to you. They even charge for information from other papers.
The Standard provided comprehensive (and generally very biased) coverage of the protest, but maintains only a recent archive (we found nothing earlier than 1999).
The Independent and Independent on Sunday have no web archive covering the Newbury period.
Newbury Weekly News
The most comprehensive press archive of the campaign is buried in the pages of Newbury's local paper, The Newbury Weekly News . This has a relatively poor website, with no archives that we could find. However, Newbury public library (in Cheap Street , a short walk from the railway and bus stations) carries all back copies of the paper on microfilm. There are bypass-related news stories going back to the 1980s (and probably beyond). The Letters page has always been a lively source of local debate about the bypass and is well worth reading.
The radical Brighton-based environmental and social justice newspaper SchNEWS ran Newbury stories in many of its issues from July 1995 onwards.
Do or Die
A thought-provoking book/magazine written by Earth First! activists in the UK . Do or Die covered Newbury in issues six and seven.
- English Nature and the Newbury Bypass 1988-1996: A detailed review of Newbury's complex environmental issues (protected habitats and species) and English Nature's politically compromised position. Quoted in...
- English Nature - A muzzled watchdog? by Peter Marren: A press release from WWF marking the publication of a detailed review of English Nature's long history of political compromise, including its part in the Newbury bypass. Quoted in...
- "The guardians of nature: 'secretive, defensive and turning a blind eye to destruction'" by John Vidal, The Guardian , 24 Nov 1997 , p.1.
- Secretary of State for the Environment accepts report against English Nature over Newbury Bypass, TBON press release, 11 November 1996 .
- Wild Places on the web: Snelsmore Common : FoE's account of how part of Snelsmore Common SSSI came to be destroyed. RSPB's case that Snelsmore deserved to be designated as part of a Thames Basin Heath Special Protection Area for nightjar is discussed and in English Nature and the Newbury Bypass .
- Wild Places on the web: Kennet and Lambourn Valley campaign : FoE's account of the Kennet and Lambourn SSSIs and the snail case (see also The snail: May-June 1996 and English Nature and the Newbury Bypass).
- Wildlife and Roads: 47,000 badgers killed each year on our roads : Newbury bypass cited by RSPB-WWF symposium as example of a road where government has ignored advice on environmental protection.
- Wildlife site protection 'not working', BBC News , 7 July 1999 . Newbury cited as example.
- Newbury - The Archaeology Bypass by Jill Eisele. A 1997 talk to an archaeological conference about how English Heritage neglected the archaeological and heritage importance of the Newbury bypass route.
- "Stone age site 'sacrificed' to new road" by Oliver Tickell and Greg Neale, The Telegraph , Sunday 20 August 1996.
- "Who should take the rap for deadly roadwater?" by Trevor Lawson, BBC Wildlife magazine, January 1998. Dr Neil Ward and PhD student Mr Robert Hares of Surrey University carried out a detailed scientific monitoring programme before, during, and after construction of the road. This article describes the background to the study and some early results.
- Costain Trade Effluent Applications, Newbury Bypass, A report by Paul Mobbs for Newbury FoE.
- End of the Road: Managing Newbury's traffic to reduce congestion and pollution without a western bypass : An alternative to the Newbury bypass produced by Friends of the Earth, WWF UK , and the Third Battle of Newbury. From Friends of the Earth (0207-490-1555).
- Newbury alternatives report : A summary.
- A34 Newbury Bypass: Response to the Highways Agency Study: July 1995 : In 1995, Dr Brian Mahwinney gave the go-ahead for the Newbury bypass after a short review of alternative options known as the "Highways Agency Study". This document reviews that study and presents a detailed review of Newbury's transport issues.
- Transport and the Environment by Royal Commission on Environmental Pollution. 17th report. London : HMSO, October 1994 (A general analysis of the growing transport crisis and a call for integrated transport. Published just before the Newbury bypass was put on hold in 1994.)
- Transport trends and transport policies: Myths and Facts , Transport 2000, London .
- Tunnels lose out in transport schemes : Press Release from Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology, 13 January 1997 , advocating use of road tunnels following protests at Newbury and Twyford Down.
- The Millennium Debate : a look at the transport debate, including links to numerous recent press articles.
- Roads to Nowhere : transport section from the Green Party election manifesto 1997. 'At Newbury, where the case against the bypass was clear, the local MP campaigned vigorously for the road and in so doing formed "an unholy alliance with the road lobby and betrayed the Liberal Democrat voters." Jill Eisele, Third Battle of Newbury'.
- Bypasses and communities: An argument in support of the road from the British Roads Federation.
- "Formal demise of predict and provide" by Sally Cairns, Town & Country Planning , October 1998, 67 (9). A good brief overview of how UK transport policy has changed over the last few years.
- Commission for Integrated Transport : a lot of useful information.
- A New Deal For Transport: Better for Everyone : the Government's Integrated Transport white paper.
- "Transport and the Economy" a report from the Standing Advisory Committee on Trunk Road Assessment (SACTRA) on whether road improvements bring economic benefits.
- "Accelerating on the road to a fiasco" by Oliver Tickell, The Times , 29 July 1995 . This article sums up the evidence that the decision to build the Newbury bypass was based on political considerations, not the environmental or transport factors involved.
- David Rendel's Concrete Overcoat : from the Green (Liberal) Democrat's magazine Challenge, Summer 1995. Why did Newbury's MP, David Rendel, apparently change his mind about the bypass?
- Bypassing the Truth: The Liberal Democrats and the Newbury Bypass : A July 1996 report by Newbury Friends of the Earth into conflicts between the Liberal Democrats' national transport policy and their stance in Newbury. From Friends of the Earth (Tel: 0207-490-1555)
- "Promiscuous and Celibate Ministerial Styles: Policy Change, Policy Networks and British Roads Policy." by Geoffrey Dudley and John Richardson, Parliamentary Affairs , Vol 49 No 4, 1996 (contrasts the personal styles of various roads minsters, including Brian Mawhinney, David Howell, and John Boyd-Carpenter, and analyses the role individual ministers play in forming transport policy).
- The UK parliament website offers an easy-to-use search of parliamentary papers, including Hansard (Commons and Lords debates, parliamentary questions, etc.). A quick search for "Newbury bypass" revealed over 1000 hits....
- Green Lib Dem Questionnaire - David Rendel: An interview with David Rendel.
- "David Rendel's website : "David is a keen environmentalist. He regularly cycles in Newbury..." but also features in Urban75's Face punching archive . (Now that Mr Rendel is no longer Newbury's MP, his website will probably soon stop working.)
- Bypass surgery: Commentary from Liberator (Green Lib-Dem magazine), Issue 234: "The Battle of the Newbury Bypass has brought two Liberal principles into head-on collision. For the Liberal Democrats, it is an extreme example of what can happen when local party members who have won control of their council follow a policy which annoys and embarrasses many supporters elsewhere."
- " Europe may put brake on Newbury bypass project":by Charles Clover and Christopher Lockwood, Daily Telegraph , Saturday 5 November 1994 , p.6. (Complaints to the European Commission about the bypass suggest the scheme contravenes European environmental law and could be stopped.)
- Twyford Down: roads, campaigning, and environmental law by Barbara Bryant. London : E & FN Spon, 1996: Contains a chapter "The Lawyer's Assessment" by Peter Kunzlik, which explains the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) directive and the "pipeline argument" on which the Newbury (and Twyford Down) European disputes were based. With Peter Kunzlik's help, Newbury campaigners took the issue much further.
- Court bars united challenge in bypass dispute, The Times, 28 February 1996 : An attempt to raise European legal issues during the Department of Transport's eviction proceedings against protesters.
- European Ombudsman Decision 206/27.10.95/HS/UK et al. : Newbury campaigners' complaints to the European Commission were followed by complaints to the European Ombudsman; this is his verdict.
- Parliamentary question on Newbury's environmental assessment : On 12 February 1997 , Michael Meacher MP asked the then Roads Minister John Watts MP what kind of environmental assessment had been carried out for the Newbury bypass.
- Environmental assessment home page : compiled by the European Commission's environment department (DGXI). Gives information on background to European environmental impact assessment laws.
- RSC Working Paper, No 98/23 : Contains a paragraph or two by Carol Harlow, considering what effect the Newbury case has had on European Administrative Law.
Legal issues, criminal justice, and policing
The campaign - told in press cuttings and press releases
The Newbury bypass attracted worldwide press coverage in early 1996, and there are hundreds of relevant articles. We've listed as many as we could find here. Some of the articles we list predate newspaper website archives, but you should be able to track them down in good public libraries (most reference libraries take the Clover newspaper index, which is the best place to start). FoE's press releases are also included, as are most of Third Battle's press releases from mid 1996 to mid 1997. Together, they give an outline chronology of the events from 1994 to 1998. But many events that happened during that time -- especially in the frenetic 12 months between July 1995 and July 1996 -- were never reported.
Note : In the chronology below, the commentary in italics comes from FoE's Newbury bypass year review (1996-1997)
The campaign: 1994-1999
The 1994 campaign
- "Europe may put brake on Newbury bypass project": by Charles Clover and Christopher Lockwood, Daily Telegraph , Saturday 5 November 1994 , p.6. Also: "Sir Michael senses a quiet victory" by Kathy Marks, on the same page (complaints to the European Commission about the bypass suggest the scheme contravenes European environmental law and could be stopped).
- "Trees used by rare bats felled for road scheme" by Nick Nuttall, The Times , 19 October 1994 (early tree-felling on the bypass route).
- "The Third Battle of Newbury" by John Gibb, Sunday Express magazine, October or November 1994?? (reviews issues and interviews chief protagonists on both sides).
- Newbury bypass petition, FoE press release, 15 Nov 1994 .
Brian Mawhinney puts the road on hold: 19 December 1994
- "Lovers of Dormice and bats rejoice" by Nick Nuttall, The Times , 20 December 1994 .
- "Roads programme on hold as report questions benefits", The Times , 20 December 1994 .
- Road building is halted by Tory U-turn, Daily Telegraph , 20 December 1994 .
- The Newbury announcement coincides with the publication of Trunk Roads and the Generation of Traffic by the Department of Transport's own Standing Advisory Committee on Trunk Road Assessment (SACTRA) (London: HMSO, 1994), commonly known as "The SACTRA report". This report, long suppressed by the DoT, suggested that building roads often generates ("induces") extra traffic rather than relieving congestion, and questioned the wisdom of building new roads.
- "Behold the spoil of war" by Bel Mooney, The Guardian , 13th February 1995 .
- Newbury Bypass, FoE press release, 7 March 1995 : (A Friends of the Earth analysis of the Newbury Bypass concludes that it has become politically 'untouchable').
Brian Mawhinney gives the road the go-ahead: 5 July 1995
- "Newbury bypass approved after six-year battle" by Michael Hornsby, The Times , 6 July 1995 .
- "Newbury bypass approval angers anti-road lobby" by Keith Harper, The Guardian , 6 July 1995
- A34 decision threatens new clashes, Daily Telegraph , 06 July 1995 .
- Newbury bypass go-ahead exposes great transport debate as sham, FoE press release, 6 Jul 1995
- "Mawhinney go-ahead signals bypass battle" by Vivek Chaudhary, The Guardian , 7 July 1995 , p.7. (Brian Mawhinney gives the go-ahead for the road just before leaving office).
- Protesters fume over Newbury by-pass 'betrayal', Daily Telegraph , 07 July 1995 .
- "Young inherits legacy of road wars and strikes" by Paul Brown, The Guardian , 8 July 1995 (Sir George Young, the "bicycling baronet", becomes transport secretary).
- "Newbury Nightmare! Cowardly last act of Mawhinney", SchNEWS, 21 July 1995 .
Campaigners step up preparations for direct action: 6 July 1995 - 8 Jan 1996
- "Accelerating on the road to a fiasco" by Oliver Tickell, The Times (Weekend section), 29 July 1995, p.8.
- Newbury Bypass Rally, FoE press release, 26 July 1995.
- A34 Campaign on the Internet, FoE press release, 27 Jul 1995.
- Newbury Bypass - work begins, FoE press release, 2 Aug 1995 (early demolition of buildings on the route).
- Newbury Bypass - Delayed, FoE press release, 17 Aug 1995.
- Newbury Bypass Data show that 80% of the traffic in Newbury is local, FoE press release 21 Aug 1995.
- Newbury alternatives report - Newbury's roads would ultimately see a massive increase in overall traffic levels with the bypass : FoE press release, 20 Sep 1995 .
- "Prepare to be appalled: Charles Clover walks the route of the proposed Newbury bypass -- and decides to lie down in front of the bulldozers", The Spectator , 30 September 1995 , p.21.
- "The biggest battle of them all" by Richard D. North, The Sunday Telegraph (magazine), 22 October 1995 , p. 12.
- New SSSIs designated in path of Newbury Bypass, FoE press release, 3 Nov 1995.
- Newbury Traffic Study, FoE press release, 13 Nov 1995.
- Government gives Newbury Bypass go ahead FoE press release, 27 Nov 1995 (bypass survives budget cuts)
- "Bypass protesters pledge direct action" by Nicholas Schoon, Independent , 28 November 1995 , p.6.
- "Bypass surgery" by Oliver Tickell, 13 December 1995, The Guardian (Society), p.4.
- "Frozen, fragile peace in the snow" by Jay Griffiths, 13 December 1995 , The Guardian (Society), p.4.
- "Protesters prepare for Third Battle of Newbury" by Vivek Chaudhary, The Guardian, 27 December 1995.
- Anti-road army digs in for battle of Newbury, Daily Telegraph, 28 December 1995.
- "The secret guardians of the Newbury underpass" by Steven Morris, Daily Mail, 28 December 1995.
- Evening Standard, 2 January 1996, p.15.
- Newbury tree protestors fight high court eviction bid, FoE press release 03 Jan 1996.
- Security Convoy heads toward battle of Newbury, FoE press release, 08 Jan 1996.
- Anti-road warriors prepare for third battle of Newbury, The Times, 8 January 1996.
The main protest: 9 January 1996 - 2 April 1996
Also well worth checking out: PP3's log of the protest, which covers the direct action period from January to April 1996. (NB: The same site also contains PP3's log of the A30 road protest.)
- 9 Jan 1996 : Attempts to start clearance work on the route of the Newbury bypass are foiled when hundreds of security guards and contractors are prevented from leaving their overnight base by protestors perched on scaffold tripods.
Rowan as in tree, Doug as in spade" (right to left)
- The Third Battle of Newbury Begins..., FoE press release, 09 Jan 1996 .
- Newbury: Round one to the protestors, FoE press release, 09 Jan 1996.
- Bypass protesters claim early win in battle of Newbury, The Times, 09 Jan 1996.
- Earth Island Journal Spring 1996: The Battle of Newbury
- 10 Jan 1996 : Work halted by protesters for second day. Only about 30 trees felled .
- The Newbury roundhats are outflanked, Daily Telegraph, 10 January 1996.
- 11 Jan 1996 : Work halted at 9:30 am. A dozen trees felled.
- Newbury: work stopped for the third day running, FoE press release, 11 Jan 1996.
- Protesters halt bypass work again, Daily Telegraph, 11 January 1996.
- Newbury protesters win again as police halt work on bypass, The Times , 11 January 1996.
- Ragtag army devises its tactics in the pub, The Times, 11 January 1996.
- 12 Jan 1996 : Police use Criminal Justice Act for first time. 34 protesters arrested.
- Bypass work halted on day three as guards are washed out, The Times, 12 January 1996.
- Police arrest 34 to break Newbury bypass deadlock, The Times, 13 January 1996.
- Newbury: Hundreds of residents replant route : FoE press release, 14 Jan 1996.
- 15 Jan 1996 : Local business people hold press conference to oppose bypass. 20 protesters arrested on bypass route.
- "We cannot go on like this - building roads at any cost" by Charles Clover, Daily Telegraph, 15 Jan 1996.
- Road protesters find an ally in Lady Barber, Daily Telegraph, 15 January 1996.
- MP 'distorted facts' to get bypass built, Daily Telegraph, 15 January 1996.
- Tree-house troops go off to war with vegan stew and CB radios, Daily Telegraph, 15 January 1996.
- Tree people will have dole stopped, Daily Telegraph , 15 January 199 .
- Newbury tree teams cut and run, Daily Telegraph, 16 January 1996.
- Newbury people dress threatened trees, FoE press release, 16 Jan 1996.
- Businessmen support 'eco- warriors' in battle of Newbury bypass, Daily Telegraph, 17 January 1996.
- Newbury protesters face eviction from bypass base, The Times , 17 January 1996 .
- 18 Jan 1996 : The heads of the six leading environmental groups visit Newbury to show their opposition to the bypass. Local MP David Rendel issues press release accusing Friends of the Earth of providing sinister protest information on website. FOE threatened legal action and Mr Rendel subsequently apologised.
- Bypass force seeks funds for policing road protest, Daily Telegraph, 18 January 1996.
- Police seek cash aid for Newbury operation, The Times, 18 January 1996.
- NGO's Witness bypass threat to Newbury Nature, FoE press release, 18 Jan 1996.
- Green groups join bypass battle, BBC News, 18 Jan 1996.
- Green leaders bridge Newbury divide, Daily Telegraph, 19 January 1996.
- Newbury: Top environmentalists visit bypass rout, FoE press release, 18 Jan 1996.
- "Well bless my old Ford: A traffic jam is no reason for the despoiling of the countryside" by Joe Rogaly, Financial Times , 20/21 January 1996.
- Newbury: International press briefing, FoE press release, 22 Jan 1996.
- Newbury bypass 'U-turn' denied by MP, Daily Telegraph, 22 January 1996.
- Newbury: former minister supports the protest, FoE press release, 22 Jan 1996.
- Newbury: FOE acts to ensure safety, FoE press release, 23 Jan 1996.
- Bypass protesters accused of cutting brake pipe, The Times , 23 Jan 1996.
- Newbury business against the bypass, FoE press release 24 Jan 1996.
- Guards at Newbury face sack after fight, Daily Telegraph, 24 January 1996.
- Newbury: the bypass protest is overwhelmingly peaceful, FoE press release, 24 Jan 1996.
- Newbury Bypass "may be scrapped", FoE press release, 24 Jan 1996.
- Letter to the Treasury Solicitor announcing the occupation of Rickety Bridge ("Rickety Wolf's Bridge")
- Newbury: Pantomime cow arrested for aggravated trespass, FoE press release, 24 Jan 1996.
- 25 Jan 1996 : Guardian journalist John Vidal reveals details of how he was hired as a security guard. Reveals that guards are being encouraged to use violence against protesters.
- Frenchie, 25 January 1996, Extracts from John Vidal's tales of life as a security guard, from the Cambridge-Newbury website.
- The Road Traffic Reduction Bill - a solution to Newbury's traffic problems, FoE press release, 25 Jan 1996.
- Newbury: the road through high society, Daily Telegraph , 26 January 1996.
- Court backs eviction of bypass protesters, The Times , 27 January 1996.
- 29 Jan 1996 : Police announce that there have been 202 arrests so far - 185 for aggravated trespass.
- Newbury Contractors move on camps, FoE press release, 29 Jan 1996.
- The illegal eviction of Gotan, 30 January 1996 :
- Newbury guards row, Daily Telegraph, 31 January 1996.
- "Throwing down a mit in the mud" by Jay Griffiths, The Guardian (Society), 31 January 1996, p.4.
Wild horses of Newbury:
A strange occurrence when horses get in front of chain saws.
- Newbury Campaign - Construction firms targeted, FoE press release, 31 Jan 1996.
- Druid Ceremony to celebrate Newbury Bypass trees : FoE press release 2 Feb 1996.
- Tropical Rainforest Countries alerted to Newbury destruction, FoE press release, 02 Feb 1996.
- MEETING OF MINDS AT SPEEN HOUSE, 02 February 1996, Cambus press release.
- Notice of occupation for Signal Box Camp, Enborne Row
- Celebrities back mass route walk at Newbury, FoE press release, 06 Feb 1996.
- Appeals against Newbury Evictions, FoE press release, 06 Feb 1996.
- Clergy hold special service on Newbury Bypass route, FoE press release, 07 Feb 1996.
- 7 Feb 1996 : Traffic experts outline alternative solutions to Newbury's traffic problems.
- Transport Experts Blast Newbury Bypass Myths , FoE press release, 7 February 1996 .
- 'Piggyback' Railfreight could help remove need for Newbury Bypass, FoE press release, 08 Feb 1996.
- 8 Feb 1996 : Three security guards defect in protest at security tactics and join protesters.
- Security Guards join Newbury Bypass protestors , FoE press release, 08 Feb 1996 .
- Newbury guards bypass soup and superiors on the road to defection , The Times , 9 February 1996 .
- 9 Feb 1996 : Highways Agency figures reveal that "benefits" from the building of the bypass could last as little as five years.
- New figures are Bypass Bombshell for Highways Agency , FoE press release, 09 Feb 1996 .
- Chain gang halts Newbury lorries , Daily Telegraph , 09 February 1996 .
- 11 Feb 1996 : Mass rally in Newbury against the bypass is the largest anti-road gathering in UK as 8,000 people brave cold weather to attend.
- Work stops on Newbury bypass , TBON press release, 10 February 1996 .
- Britain's largest ever anti-road-building protest , FoE press release, 12 Feb 1996 .
- Thousands vote with their feet in Newbury protest , Daily Telegraph , 12 February 1996 .
- Thousands join peaceful protest march at Newbury , The Times , 12 February 1996 .
- Legal challenge , Daily Telegraph , 12 February 1996 .
- Newbury protesters ransack offices, The Times , 13 February 1996 .
- Appeal for calm after Newbury mob rampage , Daily Telegraph , 14 February 1996 .
- 15 Feb 1996 : It is revealed that a rare and protected snail (Desmoulin's Whorl Snail) has been found on the bypass route. Note: English Nature had known about this for around two years and done nothing about it, despite pressure from the Third Battle of Newbury campaign group.
- Ice Age Snail could freeze bypass route , FoE press release, 15 Feb 1996 .
- "Slowcoach that could block the bypass" by Daily Mail reporter, The Daily Mail , 15 February 1996 , p.3 (rare ice-age snail on road route)
- "Protest group has transport secretary on its books", Daily Telegraph , 15 February 1996 .
- "I don't want gifts. I want to change the world", The Times , 16 February 1996 : "Valerie Grove discovers how the Marchioness of Worcester became the champion of the Newbury protesters".
- Public says Newbury Bypass should halt to save snail. , FoE press release, 16 Feb 1996 .
- Climbing festival gives 'eviction award' to support newbury protest , FoE press release, 17 Feb 1996 .
- Badgers dig in for long stay at Newbury : The Times , 17 February 1996 .
- 19 Feb 1996 : Highways Agency figures reveal that for most of the through traffic which will use the bypass "time savings are approximately two minutes".
- Newbury Bypass will save two minutes on most journeys , FoE press release, 19 Feb 1996 .
- Newbury protesters told how to destroy , Daily Telegraph , 19 February 1996 .
- Badger threat to bypass , Daily Telegraph , 19 February 1996 .
- Bypass 'will save just two minutes' , Daily Telegraph , 19 February 1996 .
- "Real benefits of the bypass" by John Watts (roads minister), The Independent , 20 February 1996 , p.15.
- Camps reprieved as High Court backs protesters , TBON press release, 20 February 1996 .
- Parents at bypass site risk losing children , The Times , 20 February 1996 .
- Lord Kennet supports Newbury Bypass protest , FoE press release, 22 Feb 1996 .
- Surprise government announcement on Newbury nature reserves , FoE press release, 22 Feb 1996 .
- The Road to Hell - 22nd February 1996 , from the Cambridge-Newbury website
- "Road use 'efficiency' a sham", letter from Graham Allen (shadow transport minister), The Financial Times , 23 Feb 1996 , p.14.
- Affirmation of Mel Parker from eviction proceedings against Pen Wood camps, 23 Feb 1996.
- Newbury bridges boost for wildlife , Daily Telegraph , 23 February 1996 .
- "Bypass bridge redesign condemned as illusion of wildlife concern" by Sally Weale, The Guardian, 23 Feb 1996.
- Bypass changes protect wildlife , The Times , 23 February 1996 .
- 26 Feb 1996 : Government Roads Minister John Watts claims in a letter to the Reading Evening Post that Newbury protesters are violent criminals. He claims that they are making hoax fire calls and endangering the lives of families in the area. The Fire Brigade say they are unaware of any such calls.
- Emergency services contradict minister over Newbury violence , FoE press release, 26 Feb 1996 .
- Newbury protestors pledge to clean up oil spill , FoE press release, 26 Feb 1996 .
- Letter from Third Battle offering to clean up the Sea Empress spill , 26 Feb 1996 .
- NEWBURY PROTESTORS PLEDGE TO CLEAN UP OIL SPILL IF HIGHWAYS AGENCY STOPS WORK , TBON press release, 26 Feb 1996 .
- Newbury Bypass in exceptional hearing at the court of appeal , FoE press release, 27 Feb 1996 .
- Newbury protestor's appeal court hearing fails. FoE press release, 27 Feb 1996 .
- Tree dweller to challenge Newbury Bailiffs in High Court , FoE press release, 27 Feb 1996 .
- Court bars united challenge in bypass dispute , The Times , 28 February 1996 .
- Lady Barber lashes police behaviour at Newbury , FoE press release, 29 Feb 1996 .
- 29 Feb 1996 : Evictions finally begin. Bailiffs (including specialist rock climbers) working with Under Sheriff Nicholas Blandy entered the "Pixie" camp at Snelsmore in a pre-dawn raid. There are 13 arrests.
- Sheriff's men move on Newbury Green Defenders , FoE press release, 29 Feb 1996 .
- Car or Planet? Bailiffs bust up Newbury protest camps by Garfield Lucas, The New Millennium Magazine, Spring 1996.
- Cunning plot strikes at the protest nerve centre , Daily Telegraph , 01 March 1996 .
- Newbury bailiffs dig in for victory , Daily Telegraph , 01 March 1996 .
- Dawn raid flushes protesters from trees and tunnels , The Times , 1 March 1996 .
- Security guard hurt in bypass clashes , Daily Telegraph , 05 March 1996 .
- 6 Mar 1996 : FOE launches campaign to try and persuade companies not to build the bypass.
- Friends of the Earth takes Third Battle of Newbury to London Construction Companies , FoE press release, 06 Mar 1996 .
- The Bog Isle Destroyed - 6th March 1996 , from the Cambridge-Newbury website
- Newbury Eviction Climb Down , FoE press release, 07 Mar 1996 .
- Skyward survives third day! - 7th March 1996 , from the Cambridge-Newbury website
- Bypass security costs exceed one million pounds , FoE press release, 08 Mar 1996 .
- Hundreds of Archaeologists to protest at Newbury , FoE press release, 09 Mar 1996 . (This meeting led to the formation of the Archaeologists and Development pressure group.)
- Newbury Residents put nesting boxes in Bypass trees , FoE press release, 10 March 1996 .
- Newbury protesters hatch nest- box plot , Daily Telegraph , 11 March 1996 .
- Sheriff of Newbury takes on the treetop greens , The Times , 11 March 1996 .
- If you don't care, you're wrong , The Times , 11 March 1996 .
- Giant Inflatable Chainsaw confronts Newbury Bypass workers , FoE press release, 13 March 1996 .
- Government can't pay for Newbury Bypass , FoE press release, 14 Mar 1996 .
- Judgement Day looms for Newbury Construction Firms , FoE press release, 15 Mar 1996 .
- Newbury hots up , SchNEWS, 15 Mar 1996 .
- "True grit at Newbury" by Eldred Willey, The Tablet , 16 March 1996 , p.383.
- A visit to Redding's Copse - 17th March 1996 , from the Cambridge-Newbury website
- Protesters oust bishop in Newbury pagans row , Daily Telegraph , 18 March 1996 .
- Interfaith service at Middle Oak on Mother's Day , from the Cambridge-Newbury website
- 20 Mar 1996 : A national survey reveals that 61 % of those who have heard of the Newbury protests believe the Government should have tried alternative methods of dealing with Newbury's transport problems first. Furthermore, 53% said work should stop immediately to allow time for alternatives to be tried.
- Newbury Bypass rejected by National Opinion Survey : FoE press releease, 20 March 1996 .
- 20 Mar 1996 : Attempts to evict protesters from the giant scots pine at Reddings Copse are halted when a tree falls on the giant cherry picker which has been specially bought in. The machine is damaged and a climbing bailiff is injured in the accident.
- Health and Safety Fears at Newbury , FoE press release, 20 Mar 1996 .
- Violent evictions at Manic Sha , one protester's complaint to Newbury police.
- Newbury protestors ask Judge to suspend evictions , FoE press release, 25 Mar 1996 .
- Newbury - Judge allows evictions to continue , FoE press release, 26 Mar 1996 .
- Rickety Bridge eviction lasts three days - 27,28, 29 March 1996 , from the Cambridge-Newbury website
- Miniature snail slows pace of Newbury bypass work , The Times , 27 March 1996 .
- Newbury - Evictions nearly over but campaign continues , FoE press release, 29 Mar 1996 .
- Businessmen against the bypass! - 1st April 1996 , from the Cambridge-Newbury website
- Tree-dwellers agree retreat to save oak , Daily Telegraph , 01 April 1996 .
- Castle Wood - the last camp - 2nd April 1996 , from the Cambridge-Newbury website
- 2 Apr 1996 : Evictions finally end nearly five weeks after they had started. A press conference by Under Sheriff Blandy on the bypass route ends before it starts when he is chased away by protesters.
- Newbury:Evictions Finally End , FoE press release, 02 Apr 1996 .
- Newbury evictions finally end : One World News, April 1996.
- Under-sheriff retreats from bypass group , Daily Telegraph , 04 April 1996 .
- "The bypass of justice" by John Vidal, The Guardian (Society), 9 April 1996 , p.13.
- 18 Apr 1996 : Highways Agency announce that security costs at Newbury are now £6 million.
What song would nature sing if she could sing to you?
Aftermath: April 1996 - August 1996
- Newbury Bypass Campaign Continues, TBON press release, 17 May 1996 .
- Newbury Bypass provides eight years relief for A34, admits leaked Berkshire County Council plan , FoE press release, 06 May 1996 .
- NEWBURY BYPASS PROTESTS - MOB RULE OR PEACEFUL DEFENCE OF OUR HERITAGE?, FoE press release, 10 May 1996 .
- 21 May 1996: Tarmac Chairman, John Banham, says that his company would not build the Newbury bypass without measures to alleviate its environmental impact. Tarmac built the controversial road through Twyford Down.
- BRITAIN'S TOP CLIMBER IN NEWBURY COURT, FoE press release, 27 Jun 1996 .
- SALISBURY COUNCIL MOVES TO AVERT 'ANOTHER NEWBURY', FoE press release, 16 Jul 1996 .
- REPORT EXPOSES LOCAL LIB DEMS OVER NEWBURY BYPASS : FoE press release, 25 July 1996 .
- PANTOMIME COW IN COURT OVER BYPASS CHARGE : FoE press release, 25 July 1996 .
- PANTOMIME COW IN COURTROOM FARCE , FoE press release, 29 Jul 1996 .
The snail: May-June 1996
Note : Although the rare ice-age snail Vertigo moulinsiana (Desmoulin's whorl snail) became a hot issue only in 1996, English Nature had known of its existence since at least May 1995 (and local campaigners had known about it since 1994). English Nature's neglect of the snail became the basis of the court case (application for judicial review) attempted by FoE and local campaigners in 1996.
- 15 May 1996: The Government announces its new biodiversity strategy. Amongst the species the Government pledges to protect is the Desmoulin's Whorl Snail. One of the countries major colonies is on the bypass route.
- PROPOSED SNAIL SANCTUARY COULD CAUSE BYPASS REVIEW, FoE press release, 14 May 1996 .
- ENGLISH NATURE CONFIRMS SNAIL RESERVE ON BYPASS ROUTE, FoE press release, 30 May 1996 .
- NEWBURY SNAIL RESERVE TO BE CORDONED OFF, FoE press release, 05 Jun 1996 .
- PROTESTERS GO TO DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORT, FoE press release, 06 Jun 1996 .
- FOE CONDEMNS GOVERNMENT DECISION TO BUILD NEWBURY BYPASS BEFORE EFFECTS ON RARE SNAILS ARE KNOWN, FoE press release, 06 Jun 1996 .
- GOVERNMENT FACES COURT ACTION OVER NEWBURY SNAIL, FoE press release, 11 Jun 1996 .
- WILDLIFE POLICY PUT TO THE TEST OVER NEWBURY SNAIL, FoE press release, 14 Jun 1996 .
- NEWBURY SNAIL: HIGH COURT HEARING, FoE press release, 18 Jun 1996 .
- NEWBURY SNAIL CASE - DECISION EXPECTED WEDNESDAY, FoE press release, 18 Jun 1996.
- Snail protesters try to stop bypass , Daily Telegraph , 19 June 1996 .
- NEWBURY SNAIL: COURT DECISION 2PM ON TUESDAY, FoE press release, 24 Jun 1996.
- 25 Jun 1996 : A High Court challenge over the Governments failure to protect the rare Desmoulins Whorl Snail fails. The Judge, Mr Justice Sedley, said his judgement was "regretful" as one can appreciate the force of the view that if the protection of the environment keeps coming second we shall end by destroying our own environment".
- RULING DEMONSTRATES NEED FOR TOUGHER WILDLIFE LAW , FoE press release, 25 Jun 1996 .
- GOVERNMENT URGED TO SUSPEND NEWBURY BYPASS , FoE press release, 26 Jun 1996 .
- Bypass groups lose court fight over rare snail , Daily Telegraph , 26 June 1996 .
- HIGHWAYS AGENCY REQUEST FOR CO-OPERATION IN MOVING SNAIL HABITAT , TBON press release, 04 July 1996 .
- Peaceful demonstration accompanies destruction of Snail's Habitat , TBON press release, 16 July 1996 .
- 30 police, 200 guards and a digger go for a whorl . . .Daily Telegraph , 17 July 1996 .
Costain win the contract to build the road: 3 June 1996
- MASS SHAREHOLDER PROTEST FOR BYPASS BUILDERS , FoE press release, 23 May 1996 .
- Friends of the Earth runs full-page advertisement in The Times , 3 June 1996 .
- 4 June 1996 : Construction company Costain are awarded the contract to build the Newbury bypass. The contract is worth £74 million.
- "Costain to build Newbury bypass" by Andrew Taylor and Leyla Boulton, Financial Times , 4 June 1996 .
- Bypass signing heralds another Newbury battle , Daily Telegraph , 04 June 1996 .
- 26 Jun 1996 : Costain shares plummet from 70p to 39p in a few hours and are suspended.
- PROTESTORS CONVERGE ON COSTAIN FOR EGM , FoE press release, 19 Jul 1996 .
- Shareholders demand Alan Lovell's resignation , Costain Independent Shareholders Association press release, 19 July 1996 .
- 22 Jul 1996 : Costain shares trade again after rescue deal with Malaysian company Intria.
- Surrealism at Snelsmore , TBON press release, 02 August 1996 .
- Chris Wolffe's affidavit, 5th August 1996
Construction starts: 6 Aug 1996
- 6 Aug 1996 : Work starts on the Newbury bypass for the first time since evictions ended.
- Newbury Bypass work to restart , TBON press release, 5 August 1996 .
- WORK STARTS AGAIN ON NEWBURY BYPASS FoE press release, Tuesday 6 August 1996 .
- Hungry wolf still refusing sausage ! , TBON press release, 06 August 1996 .
- "Costain Ecostain" : Corporate Watch magazine, Issue 1, Autumn 1996. and The Roads Page, Corporate Watch magazine, Issue 2.
- Phase two of Newbury's bypass starts , Daily Telegraph , 07 August 1996 .
- FOE slams "incompetent" ASA over Newbury advert , FoE press release, 7 Aug 1996 .
- Shooting on route of Newbury Bypass , TBON press release, 08 August 1996 .
- King Arthur Forcibly De-robed , TBON press release, 12 August 1996 .
- Newbury 'No-Sausage' Day , TBON press release, 13 August 1996 .
- Protesters were non-violent , TBON press release, 14 August 1996 .
- Protesters send love and kisses to Police , Flim-Flam festival announcement, 14 August 1996 .
- "Stone age site 'sacrificed' to new road" by Oliver Tickell and Greg Neale, The Telegraph , Sunday 20 August 1996.
- NEWBURY HUNGER-STRIKER TO CHALLENGE BYPASS BAIL CONDITIONS IN HIGH COURT : FoE press release, 14 August 1996 .
- Newbury Hunger-striker successfully challenges police bail conditions in high court , TBON press release, 15 August 1996 .
- Flim-flam Festival: Not just protest , press release, 21 August 1996 .
- Bypass route walk and fence decoration , TBON press release, 23 August 1996 .
- 25 Aug 1996 : Art bypass - a mile long art event adjacent to the Newbury bypass - takes place.
- ART BYPASS - ARTWORK AT NEWBURY : FoE press release, 25 July 1996 .
- ART BYPASS: MAJOR ARTS EVENT COMES TO NEWBURY , FoE press release, 7 Aug 1996 .
- Artists join bypass protest, Daily Telegraph , 26 August 1996 .
- ROADWORKS - PHOTOGRAPHIC IMAGES OF ART BYPASS, FoE press release, 29 Nov 1996
- Prominent Local Anti-Bypass Campaigner Vindicated , TBON press release, 30 August 1996 .
- COSTAIN FACE SHAREHOLDERS OVER NEWBURY BYPASS , FoE press release, 05 Sep 1996
- 6 Sep 1996 : Hundreds of protesters - each holding one share - attend Costain's AGM in London .
- COSTAIN AGREES TO REVIEW NEWBURY BYPASS CONTRACT , FoE press release, 6 Sep 1996 .
- Bypass protestors target Costain AGM , TBON press release, 05 September 1996 .
- Second hunger striker (Mel Parker) vindicated , TBON press release, 10 September 1996 .
- Massive Police and security operation to capture toilet on Newbury Bypass route , TBON press release, 10 September 1996 .
- Bookies won't gamble on Newbury bypass' completion , TBON press release, 12 September 1996 .
- Illegal eviction on Newbury Bypass route , TBON press release, 19 September 1996 .
- RECLAIM THE SOIL !! , TBON press release, 24 September 1996 .
- Protesters join critical mass cycle ride , TBON press release, 25 September 1996 .
- Criminal damage for making burners? , TBON press release to Schnews, 26 September 1996 .
- Newbury's bypass hits otter trouble, Daily Telegraph , 27 September 1996 .
- Third Battle of Newbury challenges Labour to scrap the Newbury bypass , TBON press release, 02 October 1996 .
- Public meeting: Communities fighting road schemes. Past, Present, Future: Winchester, Newbury, Salisbury , TBON press release, 10 October 1996 .
- Stop the Bypass Blues - Sir George , TBON press release, 09 October 1996 .
- Newbury protestors take to the trees in the garden of Sir Christopher Benson - Chairman of Costain , TBON press release, 14 October 1996 .
- Fact finding mission by Manchester Airport Campaigners to Newbury , TBON press release, 15 October 1996 .
- Letter to the Queen
- Queen invited to tea at Newbury bypass protest camp , TBON press release, 15 October 1996 .
- Injunctions avoid high court hearing to save their homes from destruction , TBON press release, 22 October 1996 .
- Third Battle of Newbury calls for resignation of conservation body's Chairman , TBON press release, 25 October 1996 and attached letter.
- David Rendel MP challenged to show support for road traffic reduction bill , Newbury Green Party press release, 29 October 1996 .
- Complaint proceedings against English Nature started , TBON press release, 30 October 1996 .
- Agent provocateur suspected in stoning incident on Newbury Bypass route , TBON press release, 03 November 1996 .
- Environmental awards tainted? , TBON press release, 05 November 1996 .
- Secretary of State for the Environment accepts report against English Nature over Newbury Bypass , TBON press release, 11 November 1996 .
- 7 Nov 1996.More financial problems: Costain shares are frozen again.
- Protesters place in history bestowed by Police museum , 08 November 1996 .
- King Arthur at Court , TBON press release, 10 November 1996 .
- Newbury bypass protest video launched , TBON press release, 19 November 1996 .
- Local Residents and Bypass Protesters seek compromise settlement with Highways Agency , TBON press release, 19 November 1996 .
- Newbury protestors go international , TBON press release, 20 November 1996 .
- Not the National Lottery launched , TBON press release, 21 November 1996 .
- Campaigners against the Salisbury Bypass visit Newbury, TBON press release, 27 November 1996.
- HANDS ACROSS THE WATER MEADOWS, TBON press release, 01 December 1996 . Salisbury campaigners come to Newbury.
- Circus under siege on route of Newbury Bypass, TBON press release, 02 December 1996 .
- Reunion Rally at Newbury Bypass - one year on, TBON press release, 03 December 1996 .
- 10 Dec 1996 : Costain announce the departure of Chief Executive Alan Lovell and Chairman Sir Christopher Benson. A new financial rescue package is also announced.
- 'Crisis at Costain' Christmas Appeal Launched , Costain Independent Shareholders Association (CISA) press release, 20 December 1996 .
- Third Battle of Newbury Web Site Renewed , TBON press release, 22 December 1996 .
- PROTESTORS TO ATTEND COSTAIN EGM OVER NEWBURY BYPASS , FoE press release, 23 Dec 1996
- Costain Closing Down Sale - everything must go , Press release from Costain Independent Shareholders Association (CISA), 26 December 1996 .
- 27 Dec 1996 : Costain EGM to seek agreement over the sale of its US coal mine.
- Newbury bypass construction contract for sale , Press release from Costain Independent Shareholders Association (CISA), 05 January 1997 .
- Costain E.G.M 6th January haunted by Newbury bypass protesters , TBON press release, 03 January 1997 .
- 6 Jan 1997 : Costain EGM to seek agreement of new share issue.
First anniversary "reunion rampage" ("The Barbecue"): 11 Jan 1997
- The start of the Solsbury Hill Newbury campaign connection walk , TBON press release, 04 January 1997 .
- The start of the Twyford Newbury campaign connection walk , TBON press release, 04 January 1997 .
- Tony Benn MP to speak at Newbury Bypass anniversary rally , TBON press release, 04 January 1997 .
- Third Battle of Newbury's invitation to the event
- ANNIVERSARY OF NEWBURY PROTEST , FoE press release, 08 Jan 1997 .
- Sir George Young receives belated Christmas presents , TBON press release, 08 January 1997 .
- Sir George's lawn dug up in bypass demo , Daily Telegraph , 09 January 1997 .
- Newbury Bypass Anniversary Rally , TBON press release, 10 January 1997 .
- Bypass protester hurt in fall from crane , Daily Telegraph , 12 January 1997 .
- Newbury Bypass Reunion Rally , FoE press release, 13 Jan 1997 .
- National BBC TV News top story, 11 Jan 1997 . Journalist Margaret Gilmore (a familiar face during the 1996 protest) concludes "middle England " will be turned off by what they see.
- £100,000 bill for Newbury melee , Daily Telegraph , 13 January 1997 .
- "Saving the world needs leadership, not arson", The Independent (leader article), 13th January 1997 .
Not everyone is happy to 'celebrate' the anniversary by tying ribbons to the fence.
Soon the fence is down... hundreds of people are inside the compound...
dozens are up a crane... more climb on a digger...
and construction machinery and portacabins are burning."
- Construction machinery torched at Newbury bypass anniversary by Mark Lynas, One World News, 13 Jan 1997 .
- Exhibition of Newbury Bypass fence decorations, contributions requested , TBON press release, 21 January 1997 .
- "Newbury clash bill still rising" by Fiona Kingston, Contract Journal , 22 January 1997 .
- "True Stories: What the papers say: Steve Platt looks at why the media is losing interest in direct action", The Big Issue , 24 January 1997 .
- There's a riot going on? by Merrick . Leeds : Godhaven Ink, 1997. Merrick 's pamphlet 'There's A Riot Goin' On?' contains a big essay about media, direct action and violence that was written the day after the 1997 Reunion Rally/Rampage and describes a lot of what went on. It also does a 'compare and contrast' of the national newspaper coverage the rampage received.
Early 1997 events
- Arthur Scargill to visit Newbury Bypass campaigners , TBON press release, 14 January 1997 .
- Fourth Newbury bypass hunger strike begins , TBON press release, 18 January 1997 .
- Campaigners attend Road Traffic Reduction Rally , TBON press release, 20 January 1997 .
- Arthur Scargill visits Newbury, 20 January 1997 , speaks to a packed meeting in the town, and tours the ravaged route, tailed by officers from special branch.
- Former Newbury bypass security guard last protester in trees at Fairmile road protest eviction , TBON press release, 27 January 1997 .
- Candlelit Vigils for the Fairmile Tunnellers , TBON press release, 29 January 1997 .
- Local residents and protesters 'tat-down' , TBON press release, 01 Feb 1997 .
- Less than twenty fours hours to Costain's Crash?, Press release by Costain Independent Shareholders Association (CISA), 07 February 1997 .
- Legal action against Police over incidents after Newbury Bypass anniversary rally threatened , TBON press release, 12 February 1997 .
- Die-in at the drive-in , TBON press release, 05 March 1997 .
- Newbury Bypass Campaigners welcome Holtsfield march , TBON press release, 11 March 1997 .
- Campaigners join in Kennet Clean-up and offer to replant route , TBON press release, 21 March 1997 .
- Pardon the Newbury Thousand! , TBON press release, 04 April 1997 .
- Happy anniversary! Diggers to replant route , TBON press release, 16 April 1997 .
- Chieveley Junction Postponed - Official , TBON press release, 29 April 1997 .
Winners and losers in the General Election: May 1997
- "Swampy & co have a lesson for the Greens" by Hugo Young, The Guardian , 13 March 1997 . In the light of Twyford Down, Newbury, and other direct action campaigns, Young asked whether modern environmentalists should be voting Green or climbing trees.
- "Bury swampy in concrete says minister" , Daily Telegraph , 15 March 1997 . Roads minister John Watts is criticized for saying he would be happy to see "Swampy" buried in concrete in an interview with a student. Swampy dismissed Mr Watts as "childish". "What the minister said was stupid and thoughtless. The man is a prat," he said.
- Newbury's General Election 1997 : Newbury Green Party candidate Rachel Stark increases the Green vote, but with a country determined not to vote Conservative, David Rendel increases majority with a 17% swing from Conservative to Lib-Dem.
- Hampshire North West's General Election 1997 : Meanwhile in the other Newbury constituency, Green Bill Baxter and 'No bypass' candidate Helen Anscomb take on Transport Secretary Sir George Young.
- The Green Party's analysis of the 1997 election.
- "David Rendel: Your MP in profile", Newbury Weekly News , 2nd May 1997 . Newbury's local paper remodels David Rendel as an environmentalist: "one of the first scientists to study the threat to the ozone layer, a long time before the danger of pollution was generally known". But during the election count at Newbury Racecourse, a bypass protester leaps forward and attempts to present Rendel with his Grey Ribbon award ("Britain's most environmentally destructive politician") from BBC Wildlife Magazine . It is this event, rather than Rendel's victory, that is carried on local TV news.
- Tory Roads Minister John Watts -- the government face of the Newbury bypass who described opponents as "rabble-rousing anarchists" -- attempts to fight the "safer" seat of Reading East, but is ousted. A few months later, he suffers a stroke.
- Newbury: Bypass was a diversion in the battle for votes , Financial Times, 2 May 1997 .
Mid-late 1997 events
- "Road protest was right says Norris", by John Deans, Daily Mail , 17 March 1997 .
- Newbury road protesters were right, says Norris Daily Telegraph , 17 March 1997 .
- "The guardians of nature: 'secretive, defensive and turning a blind eye to destruction'" by John Vidal, The Guardian , 24 Nov 1997 , p.1. (English Nature's lack of action at Newbury slammed by WWF-UK report. John Vidal quotes Third Battle's conclusion that English Nature's actions at Newbury were "a catalogue of repeated failure".)
- Road body: we won by Geoffrey Lean, Independent on Sunday , 31 May 1998 : Alarm UK closes down confident of having won the battle against roadbuilding.
The road opens: 17 Nov 1998...
- NEWBURY BYPASS SET TO OPEN. Bypass marked change in Government roads policy says FOE : FoE press release 17 Nov 1998 .
- Road opening bypasses protest , BBC News , 17 Nov 1998 .
- "Newbury bypass opens in darkness", Evening Standard , 17 Nov 1998 .
- "Newbury bypass war cost £37 million", Evening Standard , 17 Nov 1998 .
- Protesters absent as road, opens at 1.20am , Daily Telegraph , 18 November 1998 .
- Newbury bypass opening : News from SchNEWS : "I'm devastated. The opening of the road was the most awful day of my life, but the protests at Newbury stopped the Salisbury bypass being built and made government cut its roadbuilding plans." - Janet, a local resident.
- Sir George Young at the opening of the Newbury bypass : Former transport secretary welcomes the new road.
- Detailed local map launched as Newbury bypass opens , Ordnance Survey announces new map to coincide with bypass opening.
- Newbury bypass open , Earth First! Action Update , No.54 - December 1998.
- Newbury and Thatcham Chronicle bypass special .
- Newbury falls silent but bypass echoes with screeching brakes , Independent on Sunday , 6 December 1998 .
... and closes again: 10 Jan 1999.
- Protesters invade Newbury bypass , BBC News , 10 January 1999 .
- Demo closes bypass , Daily Telegraph , 11 January 1999 .
- Newbury reunion revelry , Earth First! Action Update , No.55 - January/February 1999.
- Teenager hurt in schoolbus crash , BBC News , 8 March 1999 : A boy was flown to hospital after a school minibus overturned on the Newbury bypass in Berkshire .
- Newbury target of new protest , Daily Telegraph , 30 April 1999 .
Bypass declared a 'failure' and 'cracks up: 1999
The bypass opens, acts as a magnet for through traffic and development plans (a massive new housing estate at Sandleford and a new corporate HQ for Vodafone just off the old A34, to name but two...), and results in numerous accidents (some fatal). Perhaps it's the stress of all this that causes the "revolutionary", noise-reducing, porous asphalt surface to 'crack up'. During the autumn of 1999, the entire road surface has to be replaced.
- Newbury bypasses land ruling , The Guardian , 01 May 1999 . Vodafone wins planning permission to build a new corporate HQ next to the old Newbury bypass.
- June 18th Global Day of Action , Earth First! Action Update , No.60 - July 1999.
- £100m bypass fails to cure traffic jams , Daily Telegraph , 07 July 1999 .
- Beauty spot bypass 'proving a failure' , The Guardian , 12 July 1999 .
- Bypass surgery , The Guardian , 13 July 1999 .
- "Vodafone to quit Newbury if HQ gets red light", Daily Telegraph , 22 July 1999 .
- "Bypass setback for Newbury", The Guardian , 17 Aug 1999 .
- "Newbury bypass faces disruption", The Independent , 17 Aug 1999 .
- "Repairs to shut Newbury bypass", Evening Standard , 17 Aug 1999 .
- Anger over bypass repairs , BBC News , 17 Aug 1999 .
- Repairs hit Newbury bypass , BBC News , 17 Aug 1999 .
- "Anger as crumbling surface closes Newbury bypass", The Scotsman , 18 Aug 1999 .
- "Centre of Newbury set for an unwanted diversion", Financial Times , 18 Aug 1999 .
- "Costain in black for first half", Daily Telegraph , 28 Aug 1999 .
- Bypass setback for Newbury , The Guardian , 17 August 1999 .
- "Bypass closes", Daily Telegraph , 01 September 1999 .
- MIDDLE ENGLAND SAYS NO TO ROADS : Letter to the Independent on Sunday by Adrian Foster-Fletcher, 21 May 2000: "Here, only a year after a £127m "investment" in a bypass, we have traffic levels at 85 per cent of the old levels at peak times, and this before the opening of the new Vodafone HQ and subsequent housing that will be built."
The Newbury bypass protest is covered or mentioned in the following books:
- Encyclopedia Britannica Book of the Year 1996 , published 1997, contains a double-paged spread about the Newbury bypass protest based on moody photos by Antonio (Tony) Olmos .
- Battle for the Trees by Merrick . Leeds : Godhaven Ink, 1997. Compelling and inspiring account of the 1996 protest through the eyes of one protester. A must read!
- Green Backlash by Andrew Rowell. London and New York: Routledge, 1996.
- "Only JustA History of the A34 Newbury By-Pass 1979-1998" by Gordon Rollinson, charts the story of the bypass from the viewpoint of a local man who cycled up and down the Newtown Straight counting ambulances and campaigning for the new road to be built. It is on sale at Waterstone's, Winchester, price £6.50.
- Earth First! and the Anti-Roads Movement by Derek Wall. London : Routledge, 1999. [See especially pp. 65, 85-7, 90.]
Stonehenge: Celebration & Subversion by Andy Worthington. Loughborough: Alternative Albion , 2004. Covers the role of King Arthur Pendragon and the druids.
Lots of fine photographers took memorable pics at Newbury and bore silent witness to the greater drama that unfolded during the protest in 1996. If you're looking for photos, here are some excellent people who might be able to help you:
- The Battle of Rickety Bridge , by Jo Carter, produced by Channel 4 Television for Age Concern , 17 December 1996 . A programme that used what happened at Newbury to challenge the age-stereotypes prevalent in environmental activism and the wider age discrimination in society.
- Hearts and Minds by Third Battle of Newbury/Local Voices, 1996.
- Undercurrents Issue 6 : the video activism magazine. Contains "Road blues" (Newbury construction workers are serenaded) and "Wild horses of Newbury" (A strange occurrence when horses get in front of chain saws).
- "The Battle for the Trees" by Julian Cope , on the LP Interpreter , Echo Records/Chrysalis, 1996. (The track "Redirected Male" on the same album includes guest backing vocals by Newbury protesters Merrick and "OK" Simon.)
- Numerous recordings by Theo & Shannon , aka Seize the Day . (CD ordering information and latest news on this site.)
Links to other sites
to read or write comments.