Government Declassified Acid House Documents PT1
We found a series of declassified Acid House communications between government officials and the Prime Minister. The files released nearly thirty years after the fact, make interesting reading for ex-party promoters and party goers. We’re yet to find documents from early 1989, considering the Pay Party Unit were already established and active in the Acid House community. Forcing promoters deeper into the underground where organised predators awaited the fun-loving criminals.
‘The police wish that they were called “Pay Parties”. Drugs are not the main issue’ Carolyn Sinclair Government Official
Equally revealing is the fact government sources didn’t consider drugs to be the main issue when dealing with Acid House parties. This is news to former party promoters and so-called ravers, as this internal memo was written on 12th October 1989. The national media in all forms had spent much of the year associating the counter-culture with lawlessness, drugs, underaged teenagers, gangsters and promoters they labelled public enemy number one. Each and every day brought new sensationalised headlines and negative column inches. This in-turn drew anger from an alarmed public being force-fed misleading storylines.
‘The main problem with Acid House parties is the nuisance caused by the noise’ Carolyn Sinclair Government Official
Granted the noise pollution presented a new problem for people living in the facility of a large or small event. Being accustomed to the city closing down before midnight for decades, the general public are unhappy at the night manoeuvres. Unbeknown to event organisers, police were facing bigger issues owing to the fact they couldn’t close an event down on the grounds of being too noisy. They need something concrete which could be lawfully acted upon, suggesting common law powers enforced against commoners.
‘Strictly speaking the police have no power to intervene to stop a party purely on grounds of noise. But if they receive complaints about the noise, they can intervene using common law powers’ Carolyn Sinclair Government Official
‘The Department of Environment have been thinking for sometime of making noise a criminal offence. They would like support from the police. Environmental Health Officers can find themselves intimidated on building sites and in factories’ Carolyn Sinclair Government Official
Members of the counter-culture could see the beating heart of this cloaking device. Focusing on the noise factor produced from Acid House parties, presented an opportunity to change laws they’d been hoping to enforce on factories and construction sites for decades.
‘The greater the volume of complaints, the stronger the case for acting to preserve the peace (lest citizens take the law into their own hands)’ Carolyn Sinclair Government Official
‘Virginia Bottomley has written to local authorities asking them what they think should be done about Acid House parties. Making noise a criminal offence is canvassed as a possibility’ Carolyn Sinclair Government Official
‘But this does not look attractive as a means of dealing with Acid House parties. It is too broad brush. It would involve the police in every row about a neighbour’s party, and enforcing noise control in factories. This may be something we want to do, but it would need to be justified on wider grounds’ Carolyn Sinclair Government Official
You can create new laws on the hoof but when promoters are crashing random buildings and throwing events for thousands of people, they’re not thinking about noise pollution. Police forces around the country were relatively new to the daunting site of men in suits waiting for them at the gates of illegal events, caught offhand, they assumed the event organisers acquired the correct permissions through legal channels.
‘There is already a requirement to notify the police in advance under the public entertainment licensing rules (the police themselves seem to be in a muddle about this)’ Carolyn Sinclair Government Official
The media were reporting illegal party promoters taking home half a million pounds from a nights work. It wouldn’t be long before the government wanted to hit them with prison sentences, confiscations and heavy fines.
‘What is needed is a way of hitting at the profits made by the organisers. This should discourage the craze. Much tougher penalties for failure to obtain a licence should help. So would confiscation of profits – though the police would have to be able to prove that the profits came from the event in question’ Carolyn Sinclair Government Official
‘The licensing rules can be used to crack down on Acid House parties without the new bureaucratic procedures which could catch every wedding party’ Carolyn Sinclair Government Official
The entire five page memo made no real mention of drugs, other than to say ‘Drugs are not the main issue’, drugs were already illegal, this was another opportunity to strip civil rights from the entire population.
‘Meanwhile the police should be quietly encouraged to use their intelligence to stop illegal parties taking place, working in conjunction with the local licensing authority. No amount of statutory power will make it feasible for police forces to take on crowds of thousands on a regular basis. We cannot have another drain on police resources equivalent to policing football matches’ Carolyn Sinclair Government Official
PART TWO COMING SOON