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Break Up Of Festival "Crazy Police Stunt"

The police who moved in to break up the free pop festival in Windsor Great Park yesterday were acting on their own initiative. The park managers, the Crown Estate Commissioners said they had called in the Thames Valley police force before the festival started and had left them free to decide what action to take against the fans, and when. The Home Secretary, Roy Jenkins has called for a full police report on the incidents at the festival which began during last weekend and ended with a violent battle yesterday afternoon, as a 600-strong force of policemen moved in to clear the remaining fans from the park.

A number of the fans involved in the battle and other eyewitnesses have accused the police of rough tactics, and of using unnecessary force to move fans who would have left next weekend, anyway. Police said last night that 29 members of the public and 29 police officers were injured in the clashes .

    There were 220 arrests. Scores of fans were appearing throughout the afternoon and evening at two special courts in Windsor. The hearings were expected to continue until midnight. A total of 125 people were scheduled to appear yesterday. The majority were charged with contravening the Windsor Great Park bylaws and refusing to give their names to police.

    Others were charged with obstructing or assaulting the police, or causing a breach of the peace. Those who pleaded guilty were fined an average of 10 for each offence and ordered to pay 5 costs. During the first five days of the festival about 300 people had been arrested, including the festival organiser, Mr Bill Dwyer,( right ) aged 44. He was remanded in custody by Windsor magistrates on Wednesday charged with assault, criminal damage, and threatening words likely to cause a breach of the peace.

   m behaved very well. There were bound to be violent incidents in

    At least two organisations, Release, which has been at the festival since it began, and Up Against the Law, are working to provide lawyers for those who will appear in court. Last night their representatives were contacting lawyers, and were also taking statements from eyewitnesses. Mr Don Aitken, a legal adviser at Release, said he had been amazed by the police action. " It is the policy decision that I blame not the individual police. Most of the

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   Between 1.000 and 2.000 fans were left when the police moved in at 8 a.m. yesterday, compared with between 6,000 and 10,000 last weekend. The police were accused of having made an organised charge with raised truncheons against the hard core of fans who refused to move on, of dragging women and children bodily away, and of kicking fans - including one small boy.

   Malcolm Fairburn. aged 21, a full-time Release official and its administrator at the Windsor site, said he understood the pressures on the police. " It was not all one-sided, but they had used senseless violence and had kicked out in all directions." He himself had seen a pregnant woman injured, a three-year-old boy kicked by the police, and a girl having some teeth knocked out. Other eye witnesses said they saw several young officers use more force than appeared necessary and on several occasions, senior officers ran over to their men and appealed to them to " be sensible." A police spokesman said at Windsor last night that any policeman who used a truncheon during the battle would be carpeted. He had no knowledge of any fans suffering from serious injuries. Some complaints had been received which would be investigated.