Angry No More
In 1972 the big ticket in town was the Angry Brigade trial. Eight anarchist/squatters were up for planting 25 bombs in the previous year around London. Four were eventually found guilty and sentenced after pleas for clemency from the jury to ten years. My father at the time ,David Thompson was Master of the Courts and got me a ticket. At the time I was still proud of having been a street fighting man , having been arrested and fined-mother paid.
So it was with interest the other day I went to see the play Angry Brigade at the Bush Theatre. Basically the cops are played as a bit of a joke and the Angry Brigade as a bit of musical. But it works and it reminds of a different time, when the streets of the Western world pounded with marching feet.
But today Vice the very popular on line channel sneers ,these people were dedicated to the “violent overthrow of the vile fascist dictator and evil oppressor Edward Heath.” Not our dear Grocer,oh no.
So what happened to the four. Not anything particularly glamourous. They had used up their fifteen minutes.
Jake Prescott was the working class Scot ,the others were all privately educated. He claims that while he was angry the others were only slightly cross. After serving his time he got a degree,worked for citizens advice bureaus, became an alcoholic, got cured, married had two children and became an alcoholic again. He died aged 65
Anna Mendelsohn the one who in the play had second thoughts and started phoning the police, got a degree, three children(no named partner) and a slight reputation as a painter and poet. She died of a brain tumour aged 61.
Hilary Creek also got a degree from Swansea, moved abroad and continues to battle against anorexia and heavy smoking.
John Barker also did time for being part of a drug smuggling gang. He has published a novel,claims to be influenced by Faulkner and Kafka and has a day job as a book indexer.
My political life has taken me from the Socialist Workers Party ,to the Labour Party, into the SDP and then onto the Tories. First I kinda supported the Angry Brigade,then I went to the trial now I have seen the play,and to cap it off I researched them on line. The end.
PS the reason you are getting this so early is because I am off early tomorrow for a month in Italy. chou.prego. you know the deal.