Gathering Visions Gathering Strength II

The second GVGS conference was held at Manchester University at the beginning of April. Over 270 activists from around the country gathered together to share information and skills from their diverse experiences in different movements. We had the opportunity to listen to people talk about historic and infamous actions, such as the springing of the communist spy George Blake from prison and the successful campaign to close Consort Beagle breeders, to learn practical skills like blockading and facilitation techniques, and also to discuss more in depth theory behind the struggles for social change in which we are all involved.

Despite the diversity of background and beliefs, and the very real disagreements which emerged, the level of debate was always constructive, the atmosphere open and friendly. Once people had been given the chance to explain their terms and elaborate their opinions, many of the disagreements dissolved to leave a relatively wide base of consensus on which to build. This, together with the fact that the different movements, from peace, to environmental, to animal rights, can learn much from each other, and can gain by working together, means that cross-movement gatherings like this one, have a more crucial role to play than a mere talking shop.

Anyone who would like to contribute towards planning GVGS III should contact Tammy on 0171 272 3788.

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