Psychedelic grandpa brings justice for Littleport rioters
PUBLISHED: 11:18 06 May 2016 | UPDATED: 11:26 06 May 2016
A retired criminologist, who penned a book called LSD Blew Out Grandad's Windows, has turned his writing skills to exposing the injustice of the Littleport Riots.
Rod Read wrote his latest book to mark 200 years since farm workers were hanged for protesting about food shortages in 1816.
“What happened to the rioters was appalling,” he said. “These were the poorest people in the community with starving families to feed, seeing the rich eat but the poor struggle.
“The rioters were in court in a week and hanged after a month, the Government made an example of them to stop riots in other parts of the country.
“As I wrote it became more obvious to me how the London Government intruded into local justice, it was not only a savage reprisal but went further into a bloody set up, a ‘fix’ in modern criminal terminology.
“They wanted some hangings and made sure they got them.”
Mr Read, of Sutton Gault, has self published 50 copies of his latest book and says he hopes it goes some way to rectifying the injustices of local farm workers.
High unemployment and rising grain costs following the Napoleonic Wars fuelled the riots.
In Littleport it broke out when a group met at The Globe Inn and, fuelled by alcohol, left to intimidate wealthier residents, demanding money and destroying property.
Mr Read’s first book was published in 2013 and is described as “a zany romp through the psychedelic sixties and seventies written by an actual “Psychedelic Grandpa”, who was there back then.”
It questions society’s fear of drugs, how prescribed substances are deemed safe but non prescribed dangerous and looks at experiments into substances that could help treat conditions like addiction.