For Immediate Release

The CND Symbol - 60 Years of the Peace Sign

WASHINGTON - On the 21st February 1958, Gerald Holtom unveiled his design for the first London to Aldermaston march which mobilised thousands against Britain’s production of the atom bomb. Now universally recognised as the peace sign, it can be found in every corner of the globe.

The symbol was based on the semaphore signals for the letters N and D, representing nuclear disarmament. It soon became the logo for the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, which had been founded a week earlier on the 17th February 1958.

Kate Hudson, CND general secretary, said:

"The iconic CND symbol is instantly recognisable to millions across the globe. The Aldermaston marches popularised this highly distinctive yet simple design. It took hold in the public imagination because of the sense of urgency about the growing dangers of nuclear weapons - never before had a mass movement and symbol become so quickly entwined. It was there at the beginning and it is with us now. It came to represent peace more generally when it was adopted by other movements, particularly in the US where it was associated with civil rights and the movement against the Vietnam war.

"When I wear my CND badge, it always evokes memories and stories. People will say things like 'my father marched against nuclear weapons' or 'my mother was at Greenham Common'. Today a younger generation of people, inspired by those who stand for peace and justice, against nuclear weapons and war, who want their own voices to be heard, wear the badge too: its meaning is constantly renewed as the struggle continues, over Trident replacement, against military interventions – and to prevent a looming nuclear war."


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CND campaigns non-violently to rid the world of nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction and to create genuine security for future generations.

CND opposes all nuclear and other weapons of mass destruction: their development, manufacture, testing, deployment and use or threatened use by any country.

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