1 October 2022Feature

A democratic argument for Scotland to be independent and free of nuclear weapons

In late August, Costa Rica put forward a statement at the UN in New York calling for the total elimination of all nuclear weapons. 147 of the 193 UN member states supported this statement.

Scotland should be Nation 148.

The International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN), the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW) and the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) are the key elements in gaining a world without nuclear weapons.

ICAN is a network started…

10 December 2020News

Tranings support campaigns and communities

Facing job losses and growing inequality because of the pandemic, communities and workers are coming together to support those in their community who need it, demand safety at work, tackle racial injustice, and call for green jobs and well-funded public services, among other demands.

Tripod, a training co-operative, and Friends of the Earth Scotland, a climate campaigning organisation, held a series of online campaign skills workshops to support Scottish communities and campaign…

1 April 2019Feature

A Scottish peace initiative focused on the power of money

The ‘Don’t Bank on the Bomb’ campaign for Scotland was launched at a public meeting in Edinburgh on 16 November 2015. Photo: Edinburgh Peace and Justice Centre

In September 2018, the ‘Don’t Bank on the Bomb Scotland’ campaign group (DBOTB Scotland) published a guide for divestment from nuclear weapons entitled Stop Funding the End of the World – Working to Eliminate Nuclear Weapons Through Divestment: A Guide for Scotland.

The guide was launched as part of the Nae…

1 August 2018Feature

New report scrutinises Scottish readiness for nuke convoy accident

Nuclear warhead convoy stopped by Nukewatch activists near Albemarle barracks, Northumberland, 1980s. Photo: Nukewatch

When people discover that the huge trucks they’ve just seen on the road have nuclear bombs in them, they are often shocked and outraged. Not just because the convoys are a potential danger but often people are politically opposed to nuclear weapons, which are suddenly made very real when a convoy overtakes on the motorway or passes by their front door. In Scotland,…

1 August 2018Feature

Jane Tallents surveys 30 years of Scottish action monitoring - and taking nonviolent action against - the UK's nuclear convoys

Nuclear warheads pass Faslane Peace Camp in Mammoth Majors, 1980s. Photo: Faslane Peace Camp

In the mid-1980s, Faslane Peace Campers in Scotland began noticing big military convoys which passed by them on a regular basis. They worked out that these unique vehicles, the strangely-shaped eight-wheeler ‘Mammoth Majors’, were delivering nuclear warheads to the armaments depot at Coulport on Loch Long just over the hill from Faslane.

At the time, there was very little public…

1 April 2017News

Camp celebrates 35th anniversary by halting warhead convoy

A nuclear warhead convoy is brought to a full stop on the A817 near Helensburgh, Scotland, on 22 March by Faslane Peace Campers.Photo: Faslane Peace Camp

In Scotland, peace activists connected to Faslane Peace Camp have blockaded the Faslane Trident submarine base, held an open day as part of the camp’s 35th birthday celebrations. Oh, and halted a nuclear warhead convoy.

The 2 February blockade was carried out by five peace campers who ‘locked-on’ to each other by chaining…

1 October 2016News

77-year old retired teacher blocks warheads

Police remove Brian Quail from under escort vehicle of nuclear warhead convoy, 16 September. Photo: Nukewatch

On 16 September, 77-year old retired teacher, Brian Quail stopped his second nuclear warhead convoy, this time at Raploch, near Stirling in Scotland. Brian and fellow activist Alasdair Ibbotson flagged the lead truck down, slowing it down. Alasdair lay in front of the second truck, which had stopped, and Brian crawled underneath it. They held the convoy up for 15 minutes…

1 August 2016Feature

Brexit, Scottish independence and Trident – a plan of action

Nicola Sturgeon, first minister of Scotland, addresses a Stop Trident demonstration in London’s Trafalgar Square, 27 February 2016. photo: David Holt

After the Brexit vote the view is suddenly full of huge new sprouting things, like Jack’s overnight beanstalk, but I want to look back a bit to the immediate aftermath of the Scottish parliament elections in May.

In the Scottish Scrap Trident coalition, we noted that the new Holyrood had a marked increase in MSPs belonging to…

1 April 2016News

One-man blockade halts warhead

Photo: John Ainslie

At 5.20pm, 10 March, Scottish Nukewatcher Brian Quail from Glasgow walked out onto a pedestrian crossing in Balloch, near Stirling, and stopped a nuclear warhead convoy on its way from AWE Burghfield to Coulport, where warheads are stored and loaded onto Trident submarines. More info: 

1 February 2016News

'Peaton Pirates' take on nukes

On 9 December, Janet, Douglas, David, Brian and Jean, members of the ‘Peaton Pirates’ nuclear disarmament affinity group on arrived at the door of the Scotland Office, Edinburgh, as representing the UK government in Scotland.

Someone calling themselves the ‘deputy policy officer’ agreed to read their letter (which asked the secretary of state for Scotland to explain how Trident could be used in accordance with international humanitarian law) and return to discuss it with them.…

1 February 2016News

Nukewatchers detained

On 9 January, police in Stirling detained two lots of activists monitoring nuclear weapons convoys passing through the Scottish town.

Veronika Tudhope, assistant coordinator of Scottish CND, was approached by two police officers while she parked by Stirling Castle. The officers said her car had been reported for ‘erratic driving’ and asked to see under the bonnet.

They then detained her until 10 minutes after the convoy had passed. Veronika commented that she’d been driving…

1 February 2016Feature

Ploughshares activist Megan Rice first speaker at new Peace & Justice Centre

Megan Rice talking at the Edinburgh Peace and Justice Centre Photo: Brian Larkin

Sister Megan Rice, a US Ploughshares activist, spoke on 8 January at the newly-opened Edinburgh Peace & Justice Centre about being imprisoned for two years for a symbolic act of resistance at the facility where the US is making new nuclear weapons and where the explosive components of the Hiroshima bomb were produced as part of the Manhattan Project.

Megan was 82 years of age at the time…

1 December 2015News

Scottish campaigners target financial institutions

Demo at Royal Bank of Scotland's Edinburgh HQ on 16 November. Photo: EP&JC

On 16 November, a group of Scottish peace groups launched a campaign focusing on the links between banks and financial institutions and companies involved in the manufacture of nuclear weapons.

According to ‘Don’t Bank on the Bomb’, a report published by the Dutch peace organisation PAX, 53 financial institutions in the world now prohibit or limit investments in nuclear weapon producers, a 50…

1 June 2015News

Scottish direct action protest draws 250

On 13 April, 34 protesters were arrested as they blockaded Faslane naval base near Glasgow, where Britain’s Trident nuclear submarines are kept. The Scrap Trident coalition’s ‘Bairns Not Bombs’ action (which kept the base closed from 7am until workers were sent home at 1.30pm) brought together 250 trade unionists, party activists, religious groups, environmental campaigners and community members, on the Global Day of Action on Military Spending. The blockade followed the 4,000-strong…

28 September 2014Feature

David Mackenzie reflects on the peace movement after the Scottish referendum

On 22 September, Trident Ploughshares and Faslane Peace Camp blockaded
Faslane, homeport of the UK Trident nuclear weapons system. Photo: Trident Ploughshares

I got a lesson once in how to handle serious disappointment – one that I have never forgotten. It was 2001, and the Scottish high court had just pulled the rug from under a growing hope that Trident might be outlawed in the British courts. This was almost three years after sheriff Margaret Gimblett had famously acquitted…