Wednesday, 6 December 2017

Forensic Analysis of M/c Bookfair etiquette

ON the 26th, October, I wrote by e-mail to 'David Under the Pavement' asking for a space to organise a talk at the then forthcoming Manchester Anarchist Bookfair.  I wrote as secretary of Tameside Trade Union Council asking for the opportunity to hold a meeting about blacklisting in the British building trade, and I offered to try to get Ricky Tomlinson of the Shrewsbury 24 Campaign to come to speak at a Tameside TUC sponsored event.

On the 6th, Nov., I wrote again reminding David of my original offer.  Yet, reply came there none!

In mid-November 2017, Martin Gilbert applied quite separately to the Bookfair organiser 'David Under the Pavement' for a meeting space at the same Manchester Bookfair to take place on the 2nd, December.   This time Mr. 'David Under the Pavement' acknowledged Mr. Gilbert by text asking him to ring him on his mobile phone.  Martin Gilbert now says he rang the number David gave him on about eight occasions before the date of the Manchester Bookfair and had no reply.

Meanwhile, on the 25th, November we at Northern Voices received the following e-mail from the Manchester Anarchist Bookfair organisers:
'Here is potential list of talks for next Saturday's Manchester & Salford Anarchist Bookfair.
'This is likely to change so keep an eye on website for updates.'

On the 1st, December, at 4.37pm, Northern Voices was sent the following e-mail invitation:
'Interested in anarchism and anarchist ideas?
'Come along to the Manchester & Salford Anarchist Bookfair tomorrow at Partisan from 11am.'
In addition we were promised that if Northern Voices attended this Manchester Bookfair event and went 'Upstairs there will over ten talks covering introductions to anarchism, brandalism, radical bird watching and more!'
'Plus,' the Bookfair organisers offered 'to feed your body as well as your mind, there will be vegan food available from Hulme's Teatime Collective.
'This is a free event and everyone interested in finding out more about anarchist ideas is welcome.'  
Manchester & Salford Anarchist Bookfair

Despite all these lavish and tempting invitations to attend the Manchester & Salford Anarchist Bookfair, when I went to the Partisan venue for the Bookfair at around 1pm on Saturday the 2nd, December, I was thrown out by four people including a bookfair organiser.  Other people with me were ushered and pushed out.  So far as I know no one was specifically asked to leave.

Curiously, given what had transpired at the Bookfair on Sunday the 3rd, December, we at Northern Voices received the following e-mail from the Bookfair organisers:
'Thanks to everyone involved in this year's Manchester & Salford Anarchist Bookfair.
Hoping to announce next year's book fair early in 2018.
In the meantime a date for your diary: Liverpool Anarchist Bookfair Saturday 7th April at the Black-E'

Some folk are now suggesting that the Bookfair organisers keep inviting us to attend their events just so they can have the pleasure of throwing us out when we get there.?

Well it might be more of a case of the left hand not knowing what the right hand does.  On Monday evening the 4th, Dec.,. 'David Under the Pavement' finally got back to Martin Gilbert and began remonstrating with him in a self-rightous manner for daring to attend the bookfair.  It seems in the end that we were not welcome, and also that he'd neglected to ring Martin earlier before the Bookfair because he'd 'been away' somewhere.

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