Skip to content or view screen version

Beacons of Dissent! Ablaze Above Gleneagles

Breaking News G8 Day 1 - Wednesday 6th July 2005 | 06.07.2005 00:16 | G8 2005 | Free Spaces | Globalisation | Social Struggles

On Tuesday 5th July, the first wave of hillwalkers set off into the Ochil hills - walking for several hours to reach the peaks overlooking Gleneagles itself.

At midnight a huge beacon was lit on Blairdemon (as we now call Blairdenon hill) which people there say must be visable from Gleneagles itself. At 12.45 am it was still ablaze and a second fire beacon was visable from a neighbouring hilltop.

The first day of the G8 Summit has arrived...

For years, when a community has seen danger approach, they have used fire to call for the aid of their peers as they prepare to resist the enemy. When a beacon was lit on a hilltop, the message travelled far and fast and aid would soon follow. Now, as the G8 leaders approach Gleneagles, we light Beacons of Dissent.

Those who claim to be solving the problem of climate change while driving new motorways through our communities. Who say they can solve Africa's problems by opening it up to multinational corporations. Who meet the challenges of our world with empty words and betrayal.

We light the beacons to send a message around the world that those "leaders" are not welcome here and that we intend to resist their schemes to our utmost.

We ask our friends in the world to hear our call and to respond to it.

For picture from just before midnight see:

Breaking News G8 Day 1 - Wednesday 6th July 2005
- Homepage:


Hide the following 4 comments

Great idea !

06.07.2005 12:24

It's a great idea to light beacons as in the past to make more people aware of these dangerous conspirators coming together. We need hords of people to see and hear and understand and be convinced of the danger of our civilisation if we want to be able to make a difference.


that is great!

06.07.2005 19:24

Please post photos! thanks from negativeland


second beacon

14.07.2005 23:49

From the second hilltop – Mickle Corum.

Midnight 5th July. Sitting in the dark on top of 600M hill overlooking Gleneagles. Climbed up in fading light – over two and a half hours – steep, boggy, very wet underfoot. Had met three young Germans (I am 61 and recently retired) at Convergence space in Glasgow (Dora Street) where activists were debating blockades and trying to decide details. This was well set up with sleeping hall, toilets, catering and large discussion hall including internet corner, in an empty warehouse. Their meetings reminded me of the meetings at the progressive school I taught at until last July but with no chairman or secretary and special hand signals for ‘wish to speak’, ‘translate’, ‘agree’, etc. If this is anarchy then I am impressed. Met someone I know from a different context. Approached by short-haired girl who had spoken earlier at the meeting – could she and friends join me to make a beacon? That was maybe 10 hours ago. Then ‘home’ to organise kit, buy map. Met at 6pm at Glasgow bus station. Youngsters a little late so last bus had gone – late bus at 21.35 would have been too late to climb this far. Phoned friend who agreed to give us a lift from Glasgow to Dunblane. Left Glasgow at about 19.30. From Dunblane continued along small road to Sheriffmuir and beyond. Road block. Turned around car but police pursued and stopped us. 8 West Yorkshire police. Searched us and car – my friend was nervous and agitated but I persuaded police he was only giving us a lift so he was let go. I was deemed to be the ringleader – I had ‘misled your friend and these three youngsters’! We four were soon also released – ‘free to walk where you like but if you light a fire you will be arrested for criminal damage and will miss tomorrows march’ - ’the hills are as dry as tinder and you will set the hillside ablaze’! Others, singles, two and threes, also along road, disappearing off into heathland and woods. We ducked into bracken and behind a wall to avoid surveillance helicopters. Quite a hard climb on wet, uneven turf. As night fell we could see much police activity below – every road and farm track seemed to be patrolled by cars, the odd helicopter with search light sweeping – lots of police resources being used. Reached the top, with the help and encouragement of my three young friends, in darkness at about 23.40. Can see Gleneagles outlined with white lights and small towns and villages with yellow lights below. Everywhere so wet and no wood anywhere.
Few minutes ago others joined us from a different direction. We roll newspaper torches and light them in response to beacon started on hill to the east (now know this is Blaidenon Hill). Wave, blow whistles, ululate - and get response from far off beacon.
Then two hours trying to sleep until descent at dawn. Very cold now.
02.00 Starts to rain – youngsters frozen so decide to depart in dark. Steep and slippery descent. Get down to hotel by Wallace Stone in pouring rain at about 04.00. Couple of legal advisors in minibus give us a lift to Dunblane. I say goodbye to my young German friends, who continue to Stirling, without exchanging any contact details. Catch train to Glasgow, change then go to catch bus to Gleneagles.
Next time will take some better fire material! But a wonderful experience, sending a message out across the hills, with some lovely people and a great feeling of solidarity when we saw the beacon next to us. Were there any other beacons?