Local women have shared their tales of involvement in one of the biggest nuclear disarmament protests more than 40 years on.

It has been more than 40 years since the Greenham Commons Women’s Peace Camps took place.

The protests were against the use of nuclear weapons being placed at RAF Greenham Common in Berkshire from 1981.

The protestors, made up of women, realised that a march alone would not be sufficient to get the missiles removed and so set up a camp that was in place until the turn of the century.

A performance of A Common Woman by Mary Rensten in London sparked memories and letters from west Dorset women who were involved in the protests.

They were sent to play director Margie Barbour ahead of the production of A Common Woman Reimagined, a play to be performed in April in Bridport based on the previous production.

The letters tell the stories of how some Bridport women were active supporters for the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND) and how they led protests in the market town, as well as going to Greenham itself.

Annette Atkinson recounted how her mother Jill Gallop led a protest in Bucky Doo Square.

She said: “My mother was a mother of four and a teacher at Colfox at the time.

“She definitely went to Greenham Common several times, between 1981 to 1983. On one occasion she apparently wore a skeleton costume and was told what to do if arrested, fortunately for us she wasn't.

“She also regularly ran a CND stall on Bucky Doo."

Rebecca Hilton, who is taking part in the production as one of the Greenham singers, said: “When Greenham did the Embrace the Base day of action my CND friends and I got a coach from Weymouth up to Greenham, I remember feeling like I was part of something really big and what we were doing made a difference.

“I felt like I had found my tribe and this was what I was meant to be doing in my life, rebelling and fighting for change. I remember the feeling that together women could be strong and face any oppression or adversity.”

Many other women who have made Bridport their home wrote in, including Deborah Legge, who said: “I remember going to Greenham Common with my friend and her mum to take supplies to the amazing women there and forming a human chain around the fence.

“I came from a very boring provincial place and seeing their strength and courage helped to shape my already growing interest in the peace and environmental movements. I have met many wonderful and inspirational people taking part in walks, marches and other actions to ensure a peaceful, fair and green world.”

Anna Sullock got in touch and remembered: “A few of us students borrowed a windowless transit and arrived at a muddy venue. There was a powerful sense of purpose.  All I felt I could offer, apart from being another marching presence, was a plait of my hair that I cut and tied to the fence. I admired those who were living there, the hardcore group. It was a momentous time.”

Margie Barbour said: "I wanted to hear about how Greenham had touched the lives of our community here in Bridport.

“When we presented the play in London in 2022 the audience included many women who had been to Greenham and lived there for a while.

"At the Q and A in London it was clear the experience had been immensely important to many of them, and these letters show that the same is true here. There will be Q and As after the performances in Bridport and I hope people will want to share more of their stories."

The play will be performed at the Lyric Theatre in Bridport on Saturday, April 6 at 7.30pm and on Sunday, April 7 at 2.30pm and 7.30pm.

Tickets for the play are £12, with concession tickets available for Job seekers and Universal credit at £6.

They are on sale at Bridport’s Tourist Information Centre, 01308 424901 See www.bridportandwestbay.co.uk/tickets