Wednesday, 4 May 2016

Events at Salford Working Class Library

150 years of the Manchester and Salford Trades Council - exhibition
A new exhibition at the Library, To Make That Future Now!, celebrates the 150th anniversary of the founding of the Manchester and Salford Trades Council.
For 150 years the Trades Council has fought, not only for socialism and trade union rights, but also against injustices such as poverty, discrimination and unemployment - and, as two separate institutions since 1975, it still carries on the struggle.
Open Wednesdays to Fridays 1-5pm and the first Saturday in May, June and July 10am-4pm. The exhibition runs until 26 August.

Frow Lecture this Saturday

A reminder that Richard Cleminson will give the Library's 7th annual lecture in honour of Library founders Edmund and Ruth Frow in the Old Fire Station, University of Salford on Saturday 7 May at 2pm. His topic is “A new world in our hearts”: anarchism and the Spanish Civil War.
Admission free; light refreshments after.  All welcome.

Ruth and Eddie Frow

Salford's Sarsaparilla Sounds

Salford Museum & Art Gallery, Islington Mill and ourselves join forces to fly the flag for Salford on the evening of Thursday 12 May as part of Manchester After Hours 2016. Using WCML and Salford Museum as locations, Islington Mill will curate a live programme of music and spoken word.

The night starts 5pm onwards at WCML with
spoken word performances from:
Louise Woodcock / Sue Fox / Bob Clowrey / Lauren Bolger / Alex Cook / Rachel Margettes / Rebecca Hurst - and more TBA.
In keeping with the ethics of the library founders there will be no alcohol served for the spoken word performances -  instead Steep Soda will be running a temperance bar, serving delicious and unusual soft drinks.

After 7pm the audience will head across the road to Salford Museum & Art Gallery where Islington Mill will produce a live music programme, and there will be a bar serving alcohol and other refreshments.

More information here.

A one night only, city-wide social. A mix of odd couplings and unexpected partnerships. A chance for you to get into places and spaces not normally open after hours. It’s Museums at Night, it’s Manchester After Hours. Events across the city, Thursday 12 May.  For more information visit

Our third film mini-festival

A trio of films to make you think...
The Working Class Movement Library is delighted to announce details of its third film mini-festival. In keeping with the Library's eclectic collections we have a range of screenings on offer - there's a radical history flavour as you'd expect.   All the screenings are free – and there will be popcorn...
Wednesday 18 May  6.30pm
In the company of Joan - première showing
Wendy Richardson’s documentary takes a look at the influence that those who spent time in the company of theatre director Joan Littlewood had on working class actors and audiences alike.  It covers her early days touring Northern communities with Ewan McColl through to the Theatre Royal Stratford East years, and the work with young people in the East End of London.
Wednesday 25 May 6.30pm
Watford's quiet heroes: resisting the Great War - NB CHANGE OF PROGRAMME
A film made by members of the Quaker Meeting in Watford, one of whom is a retired professional film-maker. It tells the stories of three local conscientious objectors but aims to frame them within an explanation of the national context and to generate interest in the legacy and relevance of war resistance today.
Wednesday 1 June 6.30pm
To begin the world over again: the life of Thomas Paine 
This film of Ian Ruskin’s one-man play addresses a multitude of contemporary issues that challenge us today. The story of Paine, ‘a man who changed the world with his pen’, also inspires us to always speak the truth as one sees it, no matter the consequences’.

Talkin' 'Bout That Representation
In 1969 the Representation of the People Act, which allowed people aged 18, 19 and 20 to vote in elections, was passed. During the 2014 Scottish Referendum 16 year olds were allowed to vote for the first time.
The People’s History Museum and the Working Class Movement Library want to bring together the youth of the 1960s and today’s young people to discuss all matters relating to the right to vote and youth culture. We’re holding a joint event on Friday 3 June at 2pm at the Library, as part of the Manchester Histories Festival.

To book a ticket for the event visit

This is a Manchester Histories Festival event -
Manchester Histories Festival 3-12 June 2016
Ten days  of  events  celebrating  the  familiar  and  revealing  the  new  and hidden  histories  and  heritage  from  across  Greater  Manchester.  Whether people  would  describe  themselves  as  histories  fans  or  not,  MHF2016  will have something for everyone.

Fishing in the Dustbowl fundraising concert
The Library's second musical fundraising concert takes place on Sunday 5 June from 2-4pm in Peel Hall, University of Salford, in conjunction with the University, and features Will Kaufman, performing and talking about some of his Woody Guthrie songs, and John Conolly performing and talking about  his own songs about life and work in the east coast fishing industry. This event is also part of the Manchester Histories Festival and as such we are promised a couple of Ewan MacColl’s songs as well...

Tickets at £10 (£8 concessions) will be available very soon from the University online shop at

Cotton famine talk

On Wednesday 11 May at 7.30pm, Saddleworth Historical Society is hosting a lecture by Dr. David Brown of Manchester University, "Distress in Lancashire": the Cotton Famine and British Intervention in the American Civil War.

The American Civil War (1861-65) had a profound influence on British politics and society. Abraham Lincoln’s naval blockade drastically curtailed cotton supplies, and the ensuing Cotton Famine caused a devastating downturn in the Lancashire textile industry and severe unemployment among cotton operatives. Could the Famine have forced the British government to break its policy of neutrality?

The talk takes place at the Conservative Club, High Street, Uppermill, Saddleworth, OL3 6AP (the Society has no political affiliation...).  Admission £3.

Conscientious Objectors Day
The Friends of Manchester Peace Garden are holding an event 'to mark the quiet heroism' of those who followed their own consciences by refusing to take part in any killing during a time of war.  On Sunday 15 May at 4pm people are invited to gather in the former Apple Market between the Cathedral and Chetham's School of Music, which is the Friends' preferred site of the future Peace Garden.  The Open Voices choir will sing and  names of local COs will be read out.  All welcome.

And on Tuesday 17 May at 6.30pm Dr Clive Barrett will give a talk, Subversive Peacemakers, at the Rochdale Pioneers Museum alongside their exhibition dedicated to COs Percy Redfern and George Dutch.  He will highlight a strong strand of anti-war sentiment in the Church of England during WW1, which was opposed to the dominant theology of the Establishment. This was partly based on traditional Christian pacifism, but included other religious, social and political influences.

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