An Unprecedented ‘Rebellion’

You know I am so often asked about events in my past, and the questions invariably relate to events in my life that have been reported by the media.  I suppose that makes sense really as generally people would be unlikely to know about much else.  But in reality only a very, very few people know anything about my private life, and even then, it is only the result of what I want to tell them.  I am talking about deep things here not everyday material ones.

No it is a fact that most of the things I am asked relate to events that have surrounded myself,  or about things people have said about myself.

One of these events (think a better word would be ‘episodes’ really) dates back to 1978 when at the age of (guess!) I tried to become an MP and stand at the general election for the “Wicca Workers Party” (WWP). 

Now, Wicca, as many people might know, is an ancient religion or Knowledge system that predates Christianity by many thousands of years; and which taught the importance of understanding the Laws of Nature and Ourselves in relation to those Laws governing the universe.

Unfortunately, this religion was much misunderstood by the early Church who later were to equate it with witchcraft and persecute its followers (hence the bloody witch persecutions of history).

I was initiated into Wicca when I was but 18, and underwent further Initiations not many years later.

Then, in 1974, I found myself at the centre of a ‘witchcraft trial’ (as it was referred to in the media) for offences relating to the occult – offences which, in fact, I had not committed.  Nevertheless, I was sentenced to prison for these alleged ‘offences’, even though in reality they were basically the result of vandalism and had nothing to do with ‘witchcraft’ or the occult.

Whilst in prison, I continued to protest my innocence but, in so doing, I refused to give up or abandon those principles which I’d been faithful to during and after my long  period of learning and subsequent Initiations. 

This, in turn, brought me into great conflict with the British government (who had refused to register me as a member of the Wiccan religion) and led to my taking the UK government to the European Commission of Human rights over many aspects of my case.  I won.

Because of my treatment in prison (not from the other prisoners but by the prison authorities) which was upheld by the Home Office and the UK government itself, I determined upon my release to publicly ‘fight back’ against all these injustices and – although not remotely interested in politics – I did so by forming the Wicca Workers Party and ‘forcing’ certain policies upon the UK government.

It was my way of showing that I would fight against all forms of religious persecution.  And I did so with a vengeance.

One of the main policies in the manifesto was to make Wicca the official state religion.  To this end I called for more power to the Monarchy and a ban on communism, which everyone knows is opposed to any belief in God or religious worship.

I had explained at my Trial that Wicca had nothing to do with black magic or Satanism and that I saw nothing wrong with natural sex, but this soon came to be distorted by the media and there followed accusations of holding ‘black magic orgies’!

My reaction to this was fairly immediate.  In the manifesto, I called for a ban on the persecution of prostitutes and to leagalise state brothels.

I also made a pledge to bring England out of the Common Market as I saw this as a potential catalyst for spreading communism in Europe.

All this, of course. Did not go down too well with those commonly accepted values in society, and gave the Press a ‘hey day’ to counter my potential political policies.

I didn’t really care.  I only intended to make my point.  And in retrospect I think I succeeded!

It may have been an almost unprecedented ‘rebellion’,  but then I had spent two long years in prison for offences of which I had not been guilty.

My only ‘offence’ – if any – was to fight against bigoted persecution.  This was the main theme of my defence in Court.

It still remains so today.

That’s all for today everyone.

For the moment,

David

  • reply Matt ,

    Dear David
    Thanks for your post relating to the WWP. The fact that you came into conflict with the prison authorities over your beliefs reflects their prejudice and narrow mindedness. In prison Christians of all denominations are allowed to practice their faith, I should imagine the same applies to other faiths as well, why should it be different for a Wiccan? I’m sure many Christians would say that their faith is a great strength to them, especially in a place like prison, yet in your case the authorities disregarded this important fact; that shows a terrible lack of humanity.
    Regards Matt

    • reply Craig ,

      hi david. interesting blog.

      do u think that wicca was seen differently back in the 70’s after the way it was portrayed in hammer horror films?
      do you think wiccans would be given such a hard time today?

      also on the subject bishop bonkers has mentioned you and the WWP as some sort of right wing racist party.
      he even had a flyer of ur leaflet and a nazi leaflet overlapping it.

      funny how his nazi leaflet matched the identical dimensions of the supposed wwp one which had u holding a rifle!!

      cheers
      Craig

      • reply David Farrant ,

        Thanks Matt,

        You make an important point when you said . . .

        “In prison Christians of all denominations are allowed to practice their faith, I should imagine the same applies to other faiths as well, why should it be different for a Wiccan?”

        Yes, they do have facilites for the other major religions and faiths – even their own ministers to visit. So I don’t want to mislead anyone over that.

        But in the case of Wicca, they simply refused to accept it; just as the Home Office did after I had appealed to them.

        Probably because they simply didn’t understand it or associated it with sensational Press reports of the 60’s and 70’s that the whole thing was involved with nude women dancing at Sabbats and connected with the more sinister rites of Satanism and black magic.

        Nothing could be further from the truth. But then, if people choose to believe what they read in sensational newspapers . . .!

        David

        • reply David Farrant ,

          Hi Craig,

          Your question about Wicca, I have really answered in my reply to Matt (above).

          Wicca never really ‘changed’ in the 60’s and 70’s (true Wicca, that is) but it attracted a media interest in certain people trying to exploit it. Numerous books and magazine articles were written about it; it was the subject of ‘new age’ TV coverage. and so on.

          I hope I made it clear in my Blog earlier, I have never been te least bit interested in politics; either far Left views or far Right one’s. I was just trying to make the point about the hyporcrisy involved in some religious and political beliefs and their misguided attitudes towards Wicca. That’s all.

          Now can I still expect to see you and the ‘Belsize Banshee’ tomorrow? That’s still fine as arranged but I haven’t heard from you for awhile.

          For now,

          David

          PS Have you heard from C. lately? Tell me on the phone or when I see you. No need to answer that here.

          D

          • reply Hesselius ,

            David hi,

            You wrote: ‘Now, Wicca, as many people might know, is an ancient religion or Knowledge system that predates Christianity by many thousands of years..’

            With all due respect hasn’t the latest scholarship leant towards the conclusion that Wicca per se dates back to at the earliest the late 1940s/early 1950s and was largely a home-made religion created by Gerald Gardner from scraps of folklore, Crowleyan stuff, the ideas of Margaret Murray and so forth as the ‘Book of Shadows’ shows? Francis King in the 1970s also demonstrated how the Wicca which people in the 60s and early 70s thought was an ancient religion was in his view a modern invention…

            I’d be interested to hear your views on this.

            Hope this finds you well David and good luck with all your literary work at this time.

            Best Wishes
            Hesselius

            • reply David Farrant ,

              Hi Hesselius

              I do remember you – at least I remember your name. This is really just to say hello again quite quickly now.

              Yes, I am only too aware what the ‘experts’ say about the origins of Wicca (Francis King was a prosecution against me at my 1974 Old Bailey trial!) but its something that needs more than a quick reply.

              I WILL answer you a little later (maybe this evening) but just wanted to say hello again for now.

              David (Farrant)

              • reply Columbine ,

                Wicca is/was the ancient religion practised by the Anglo-Saxons, and was replaced by Christianity in the 8th century. The word ‘Wicca’ is directly Old English, meaning ‘to know.’ It underwent a revival in the 1960’s/1970’s following the repeal of the Witchcraft Act (for which one could be hanged before the repeal) and is now, I am happy to say, flourishing once again.

                Columbine.

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