Event Report: Tripwires in Newcastle


I make up one eighth of North–Northern Stage’s emerging associate company in Newcastle. After a long week of mind puzzling exercises and constant questioning, Friday arrived and brought with it the Index on Censorship’s theatre workshop, Tripwires.

We began with tired heads and limp limbs, but this feeling lasted all of five minutes. Tripwires threw us into a world of provocation, decision making and analysis both on an individual and global scale. Throughout the day we kept coming back to Index’s core value of free expression. The workshop exposed our individual and collective prejudice, conditioning and at the same time strengthened our sense of justice, fairness and the need for conscious thought and understanding.

Index and Tripwires inspired, challenged and encouraged us to speak freely and question everything.

This article was posted on March 3, 2014 at indexoncensorship.org

Newcastle ruled the worst council for surveillance

Newcastle Upon Tyne local authority has been deemed the worst offender in Britain for covert surveillance operations, according to a study this week. Under the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act, local authorities have carried out over 8,500 covert surveillance and bugging operations over the last two years. With 231 checks in two years, Newcastle local authority has the worst record of spying on residents in the UK. With Ripa authorisation, the council carried out surveillance to check on the activities of Newcastle residents, ranging from fly-tipping to sick pay claims. Over a dozen councils have used Ripa to punish dog-fouling. Of the 8,500 national covert surveillance, a little under 4.5 per cent have resulted in prosecution.