Reclaim the Night is a campaign aiming to give power to people facing violence and allow them to speak up. This was the start of their 16 days of activism, with talks from local councillors, police, and others in the community, as well as a march to the Kelpies in Falkirk on November 25, 2022.
Reclaim the Night started in 1977 to protest the police response to the Yorkshire Ripper murders when, rather than asking men to stay at home, women were told to remain inside in order to be safe from violence.
Reclaim Stirling itself grew in response to a series of incidents of drinks’ spiking in the area, and a need to make sure local businesses took the threat seriously. I was able to follow the Reclaim Stirling group through the process of preparing signs to hand out before the walk to the Kelpies.
The march was met with car horns which raised some spirits, while worrying others. Some joined the march as we walked through the park. Chants could be heard coming from the front as we walked, calls for justice and safer streets.
The walk itself began as the sun started to set, and reached the Kelpies as it dipped below the horizon. There were a few more words said as the rain started, with attendees hiding under their signs or sheltering each other under umbrellas.
Featured Image Credit: Jonathan Boomer