Diggers 350 email list – and St George’s Hill occupation in 1999

The Diggers 350 UK Land Rights email list

https://mailman.gn.apc.org/mailman/listinfo/diggers350

…was originally created for our two-week occupation of St. George’s Hill, Surrey, in April 1999 – view messages – and if you like what you see – join here – guaranteed NO ASTROTURF!

n15_plant1 latest… Diggers leave St Georges Hill The struggle for land continues across the U

K

The Diggers Community is a land occupation in the spirit of Gerrard Winstanley and the Diggers. It is an eco-village in the woods surrounding some of the UKs most private residences.

On 3rd April 1999, a ‘ragged band’ of land-rights activists, history experts, local  people, singers, stonemasons, and many more marched from Walton-on Thames to St  George’s Hill in Surrey. With them they carried a stone commemorating the Diggers,  a radical group who at the end of the English Civil War, set about trying to reclaim  the land of Britain for those who were being dispossessed by enclosures and greed.  Today, St Georges Hill is the Beverley Hills of London, an enclave for the ultra-rich. Not surprising, perhaps, that they could not find a place for our stone

When the march was over and the singing had been done, a number of people strolled across the estate and took occupation of a small piece of land on the junction of Camp End Road ands Old Avenue, within the private St Georges Estate.
Within hours, a camp had sprung up, with tents, yurt, cooking facilities, compost toilets and a garden. As the first local visitors were welcomed at dusk, candle lanterns in the shape of giant vegetables lit up the trees. In a clearing stands the stone we brought from Walton on Thames churchyard.
The Diggers community has vowed to stay put until a permanent home is found for the Diggers Stone, with a public right of way leading to it. digger2
Yet the village is more than just a protest. It is also a celebration of what people can do when they come together to make something beautiful happen. It is a place of welcome to all in a largely hostile environment.
Together, we can make ecologically sound and socially just communities. The model of existence represented by the mansions of St George’s Hill is essentially exploitative and unsustainable. It is a mode of existence so blatantly wasteful that we were able to feed a hundred people with the shops closed on Easter Sunday just from food we found thrown out in skips. It is a mode of existence which is founded on the historical injustices of enclosure in this country and on the continuing injustices of landlordism and lifelordism in the worlds poorest countries.
The diggers community is a show-piece for the movement that rejects these things and puts forward a more sane way of being. The camp is buzzing with people who are involved in other projects to work on the land or in inner city allotments, people working to reform the law or to oppose genetic modification, people campaigning for greater access to the land and people working for change in the planning laws which make low impact living so hard.
Please do come and visit, join us for a cup of tea or an evening or a week, idealism hasn’t been so practical since the Diggers of 1649 :

Worke together,
Eate bread together,
Tell this all abroad

Caesar’s Camp difficult to access Public Footpath on St George’s Hill, Surrey.

Caesar's Camp Public Footpath <marked in red> on St George's Hill, Surrey. It was gifted to the local highways authority for public use by a previous owner around 1970.
Caesar’s Camp Public Footpath on St George’s Hill, Surrey. It was gifted to the local highways authority for public use by a previous owner around 1970.

4 thoughts on “Diggers 350 email list – and St George’s Hill occupation in 1999”

  1. According to a Guardian article (https://www.theguardian.com/society/1999/mar/24/guardiansocietysupplement2) it was a gap in the bushes where ‘Ceasar’s Cottage’ (now demolished I think) meets Camp End Road. I reckon it’s about here: https://osm.org/go/euuIvjoOA–?m=

    The thing is that’s already in the middle of the estate and all the roads leading to that point are already gated on the map.

    But see this fella here: https://m.megalithic.co.uk/modules.php?op=modload&name=a312&file=index&do=showpic&gid=295&pid=62991&orderby=dateD

    He seems to have managed it in 2010, and I noted that he’s still active on that website. So if I were to fancy a walk to see old Gerard and Co and the Iron Age ramparts, I’d send him an email.

    x

    1. It is like a war zone in there – constantly patrolled – non-residents’ mobile phones tracked I think too – but it is fairly easy to get into this Caesar’s Camp footpath using a bit of initiative.

  2. Do you know if there is still a public right of way that was part of the roman fort. A small footpath near where the camp was. I’m sure there was one, but I can’t find it on any map

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