History events from 19 September

Wednesday 19 September. 7pm. Josephine Butler and the “Ladies Campaign” against the Contagious Diseases Acts

Conway Hall – book here…

Thursday 20 September. 7-9pm. Born in Shame – Became a Dame
Described as a politically aware ‘radical health visitor’ in the 1970s, Dame Professor Elizabeth Anionwu has been a trailblazer throughout her professional. Join BCA Chair Dawn Hill CBE in conversation with Dame Professor Elizabeth Anionwu for an intimate reading and conversation about her memoirs and remarkable journey from shame to dame.

Black Cultural Archives, Windrush Square, Brixton

Until Saturday 22 September. ROOTED – Celebrating Windrush Generations

Rooted documents the variety of pioneering ventures undertaken by the Windrush generation as they strove to build their lives, establish businesses and dreams here in UK.

Black Cultural Archives

Tickets are £7 | Book online

Saturday 22 September. 2pm. Political Victims of the Nazis

Talk by Merilyn Moos for Socialist History Society Public Meeting

Marx Memorial Library, 37a Clerkenwell Green, EC1R 0DU

Thursday 27 September. 7pm. Colonialism and Slavery in Popular Culture Today

Memorial 2007 Annual Lecture by Afua Hirsch, author, journalist, broadcaster and former barrister. Author of Brit(ish): (2018).  Writes a column in the Guardian, and broadcasts etc  on identity, diaspora, socio-economic developments and social justice.

Chancellor’s Hall, Senate House, University of London

To request a seat email: info@memorial2007.org.uk

Friday 28 September. 8pm. Henry Mayhew: pioneering Victorian Social Explorer

Talk by Chris Anderson

Wandsworth Historical Society, Friends Meeting House, Wandsworth High St, London, SW18

Tayo Aluko‘s Call Mr Robeson in October

Oct 3: Talk @ Black History Group, Preston, Lancashire
Oct 4: Robeson @ Court Theatre, Tring, Hertfordshire
Oct 5: Robeson @ Clapham Library, London
Oct 18: Talk: Counterfire, London
Oct 21: Robeson @ Hebden Bridge Trades Club, Yorkshire

Tuesday 2 October.7pm. Billy Purvis, the First Professional Geordie

North East Labour History Society First Tuesday talk by Dave Harker.


Friday 5 October. 7pm. Spirit of 1968

The Garage, 14 Chapel Field North, Norwich NR2 1NY

£10 / £5 concessions

To book ring 01603 598646 or on-line from The Garage’s website.

Organised by Norwich and District Trades Union Council

Saturday 6 October. 10.15am–3pm. The Frontier of Control: Workplace Regimes from 19th Century to the 21st Century Gig Economy: Organising the Fightback

Session I: (1)    The Alienation of Labour: Marx on the capitalist labour process/Scientific management/origins of productivity bargaining, combine committees, automation, worker’s control. The disguise of exploitation. (2) The fruits of working-class productivity: Our’s for the taking! Session II: Pushing at the Frontiers of Control: control in the workplace/technology/AI/work beyond capitalism.

Swarthmore Centre, 2 – 7 Woodhouse Square, Leeds, LS3 1AD.

£5 on the day including lunch

To book a place email Keith Venables: iwceducation@yahoo.co.uk


Wednesday 10 October. 1-6.30pm  Not just Love on the dole: Walter Greenwood and working class writing

Talks, exhibition, here at WCML, and book launch of Chris Hopkins’s new book on Walter Greenwood, as well as the 80th anniversary of the publication of Love on the dole, and 115 years since Greenwood was born.

University of Salford and Working Class Movement Library. Full details and schedule of the great range of talks is at www.wcml.org.uk/WalterGreenwood.

Thursday 11 October. 6.30pm. The Money of the Poor: Financial Inclusion in Historical Perspective

Talk by Professor Rebecca Spang (Indiana University (Bloomington))

Birkbeck, University of London.

Free, but booking is necessary. Click here  or go to https://moneyofthepoor.eventbrite.co.uk

Rebecca Spang will use her work on the birth of modern money, and modern politics, during the time of the French Revolution to talk about contemporary monetary innovations like cryptocurrencies and recent policy attempts at addressing inequality. Do low-income individuals benefit by being included in the dominant monetary system, or would they fare better creating their own means of exchange? Author of Stuff and Money in the Time of the French Revolution.

Saturday 13 October. 1918—2018: Propaganda, Revolution and Victory Conference

The School of Culture, University of Sunderland

Keynote speakers: Peter Hart (The Last Battle: Endgame on the Western Front 1918), Taylor Downing (Secret Warriors: Key Scientists, Code Breakers and Propagandists of the Great War). Talks and exhibitions from: Dr Ingrid Sharp & Dr Corrine Painter (Leeds Uni): Finding the Women: German Revolutionaries 1918/19’; Dr Andre Keil (Sunderland Uni): The Ordeal of Victory: Demobilisation and the Crisis of 1919 in Britain; Dr Sarah Hellawell (ditto) Students in North East England and the Promotion of an International Community after the Great War; Professor Angela Smith (ditto) Sympathy and Suspicion: the state’s surveillance of widows of the First World War; Trevor Thorne  (Sunderland Antiquarian Society) will present an exhibition on ‘Sunderland and the Great War’.

Open to all and free, but you will need to book a place through Eventbrite.

For more information and to view the programme see: http://bit.ly/UoS-1918-2018

Saturday 20 October.10.30am– 4.30pm. Seventeenth Essex Conference on Labour History

Talks by Barbara Humphries (Labour Party activist and socialist historian) om the centenary of the right of women over 30 to vote and the struggle for universal suffrage; The 150th anniversary of the formation of the TUC and the achievements of the trade union movement; Stan Newens (former Labour MP and MEP and socialist historian) on the bicentenary of the birth of Karl Marx, his life and his ideas; John Grigg (LP activist and socialist historian) on the centenary of the formation of constituency Labour Parties, Labour’s 1918 constitution and Clause IV.

Jointly sponsored by Labour Heritage, the Essex Labour Campaign Forum and the Cambridge and South & West Essex Co-op Party Council.

The Labour Hall, Collingwood Road, Witham, CM8 2EE.

(adjacent to Witham rail station) from 10.30 a.m. to 4 p.m

more details…

Wednesday 24 October. 2pm.  Poetry for a new era: Walt Whitman and British socialism, 1880-1914

Talk by Kirsten Harris at Working Class Movement Library, Salford – www.wcml.org.uk/events.

Wednesday 24 – Saturday 27 October. 7.30pm, The Ragged Trousered Philanthropists

Adapted and performed by Neil Gore.

Matinees Thurs 2pm & Sat 3pm

Tara Theatre, Garratt Lane, Earlsfield, London

more details…

Saturday 3 November. 2pm. Heaven taken by storm: Christopher Hill, Andrew Marvell and the Dissenting Tradition.

The Christopher Hill Memorial Lecture by Professor Justin Champion.

more details…

Satuday 3 November. 3pm. Peterloo

Showing of Mike Leigh’s new film Peterloo.

The film will be introduced by John Charlton (North East Labour History Society)

Tyneside Cinema, Newcastle

You can book your seats at https://www.tynesidecinema.co.uk/film-and-events/view/peterloo

John’s article about the great Town Moor demonstration against the massacre, ‘1819: Waterloo, Peterloo and Newcastle Town Moor’ was published in North East History in 2008. I am in discussions to publish it as a History & Social Action Publication for the event.

Wednesday 7 November 2pm.  Joseph Arch: agricultural trade unionist and MP

Talk by Martin Empson at Working Class Movement Library, Salford


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Suffragist/Suffragette History Events from October


The Rebellious Women of Wimbledon

Museum of Wimbledon. Temporary display about local women campaigners for women’s suffrage, education, and recognition in science and in politics, including items that belonged to Rose Lamartine Yates.

Saturdays and Sundays 2.30-5.00 pm

22 Ridgeway, London, SW19 4QN. 020 8296 9914


 October: play about the Suffragettes by Beth Flintoff

Centring on the remarkable story of Wimbledon resident Rose Lamartine Yates, this new play, by acclaimed playwright Beth Flintoff, is an impassioned, unsentimental and sharp-witted tribute to the Suffragette cause in this centenary year.

“My infant son is eight months old…when the boy grows up he might ask me, ‘What did you do, mother, in the days of the women’s agitation, to lay their grievances before the Prime Minister?’”

A cast of three women, a handful of props and original music, bring this incredible story vividly to life for the first time, in an imaginative, theatrical and entertaining production.

8 – 13 October. 7.30pm. Wimbledon Library. (Except Saturday 1pm PWYL*) – Book tickets

15 October. 7.30pm. Tara Arts, 7.30pm – Book through Tara Arts

23 October. 7.30pm. Durning Library, Kennington, SE11 4HF– Book tickets

24 October. 3pm. Morden Library.  (PWYL*) – Purchase tickets on the door

25 October. 3pm. West Barnes Library. (PWYL*) – Purchase tickets on the door

26 October. 2.30pm. Mitcham Library. (PWYL*) – Purchase tickets on the door

26 October. 7pm. Balham Library, SW12 8QY. – Book tickets

27 October. 7pm. Upper Norwood Library, SE19 1TJ. – Book tickets

28 October. 2pm. Scout Hut, 106 Cottenham Park Rd, SW20 0SX. (PWYL*) – Book tickets

PWYL – Pay What You Like performances. For these shows contributions to each ticket should be made on the door. Suggested contribution £5

For more details contact Attic Theatre. 020 8640 6800; jonny@attictheatrecompany.com

1 October – 1 November. Freedom, Votes, Equality.

Exhibition about  the history of women’s suffrage in Merton.

Merton Heritage Centre, Morden Library

Information :Tel. 020 8545 3239.  www.merton.gov.uk/heritage

16 October. 10.30am-Noon. Women’s Suffrage in Merton.

Illustrated talk by Merton Heritage Officer, Sarah Gould, about the local people, places and events linked to suffrage campaign.

West Barnes Library

Friday 19 October. 6pm.  The art of suffrage propaganda

Illustrated talk by Elizabeth Crawford discussing  the wide range of artworks – banners, posters, postcards, china, jewellery etc –  produced by suffrage artists in support of the women’s suffrage campaign in the years before the First World War.  The talk draws on research undertaken for Elizabeth’s latest book, Art and suffrage: a biographical dictionary of suffrage artists.

Working Class Movement Library, Salford. Free – no booking in advance.

29 October – 30 November. Keep the Home Fires Burning.

Exhibition about the role of Merton women on the Home Front during World War 1.

Merton Heritage Centre

Thursday 22 November. 10am-5.30pm. Commemorating the centenary of suffrage in Wigan

Speakers include Helen Pankhurst (grand-daughter of Sylvia).

Tickets price £12 for Wigan residents and £15 for others, including lunch, are now on sale.  For more information or to book contact the Museum of Wigan Life on 01942 828128 or email wiganmuseum@wigan.gov.uk.

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Croydon news & events at 15 September

Tuesday 18 September. 6.30pm Council Scrutiny Children & Young People Sub-Committee

Monday 24 September. 6.30pm. Council Cabinet

Corporate Plan & Medium, Term Financial Strategy 2018/22, Qtr 1 Financial performance, Early Help Strategy update, Governance Review. Care Leavers’ Local Offer, Scrutiny Recommendations, and Investing in Our Borough.

The Corporate Plan and Financial Strategy set out the usual aspirations, but contain two important new approaches:

(1)    the development of a Creative Enterprise Zone encompassing a new cultural quarter in Central Croydon; and developing Neighbourhood Plans.

(2)    the creation of an Asset Investment Fund of £100m to generate income from property investment.

The Governance Review is fulfilling both the Labour and Tory election promises given the growing disquiet about the Executive  Leadership and Cabinet model which squeezes most Councillors out from decision making. The two papers being considered setting out the details for the Review are:

Governance Review

Appendix 1 Scoping and Terms of Reference document

For previous discussion see



Tuesday 25 September. 6.30pm. Council Scrutiny Health & Social Care Sub-committee

Tuesday 25 September. 7pm. Croydon Communities Consortium

St Michael’s Church Hall, Poplar Walk, CR0 1UA

Please book a place at https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/community-meeting-in-croydon-open-to-all-tickets-50087730751

Saturday 27 October. From 9.30am. 2018 Croydon Literary Festival

Events will take place at Clocktower, Central Library and Spread Eagle Pub & Theatre.

Full details at: https://croydonlitfest.com

Council Planning Design Consultation

The draft documents can be seen at


Croydon to lose Croydon North Parliamentary Constituency

The Boundary Commission has decided to delete Croydon North at the next legally scheduled General Election, with parts going into a new constituency with bits of Mitcham and Tooting, while other being linked with parts of Lambeth.


See also Inside Croydon discussion

News in Brief

Council paid £5m above asking prices for Croydon Park Hotel

(Inside Croydon 10 September)

Sarah Jones (MP) calls on government to fund sprinkler retrofitting (Local Guardian 11 September)

Croydon Council ordered to pay mum living in mouldy home £1,800 (Croydon Advertiser. 11 September)

Why Croydon needs a visitor centre.  Chris Barber argues the case on Croydon Citizen (10 September)

Planner architect Vincent Lacovara: ‘Why I’m leaving Croydon for Enfield’. He praises what has been happening in Croydon.

(Architects Journal 11 September).

Council renovates two long-term empty private houses (Your Croydon 13 September; Croydon Advertiser 14 September)

Croydon Misses ‘Affordable Homes target by 1,4000 (Inside Croydon 14 September)

Cllr Pat Ryan says planning bias for Brick by Brick. (Inside Croydon 14 September)


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Peace Day activities in Croydon


The latest posting in my series in Croydon Citizen on peace and anti-war activism in Croydon is at:


Peace Day Park Hill

Croydon Peace Tree  is working with the Friends of Park Hill Park to raise awareness about this special day. The organisers would like you to join in by sending us your peace day messages via twitter, facebook or email. They will be displayed in the Peace Garden, Park Hill Park on Friday 21 September.

There are also ongoing Saturday Morning Community Gardening sessions in the Peace Garden – more info at http://parkhillpark.org.uk


LMP 22 September

Featuring a special performance of the Anthem for Peace
with St Christopher’s Hospice Choir & Open Door.

Programme: Richard Brown/Shaniqua Benjamin – Anthem for Peace; Rossini – Overture ‘The Italian Girl in Algiers’; Mozart – Violin Concerto No.5 in A K.219; Bizet/Waxman – Carmen Fantasy; Mendelssohn – Symphony No.4 in A ‘Italian’

St.  John the Evangelist, Upper Norwood

Tickets and info here:

17 October 7.30-9.30pm. Croydon Peace Council Launch

Croydon Peace Council

Hosted by London CND at Ruskin House, 23 Coombe Rd

Featuring a screening of the 1959 documentary March to Aldermaston and speeches on the increased threat of nuclear conflict and how to build a peace movement in today’s world.  More info and tickets


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The Ragged Trousered Philanthropists 24-27 October



Wednesday 24 – Saturday 27 October. 7.30pm; Mat. Thursday and Saturday – 2pm

The Townsend Theatre Productions present a one man magic show show based on the labour movement influential novel written by Robert Tressell and published in 1914.

Tara Theatre, Earlsfield,  365 Garratt Lane, Earlsfield. Its very close to Earlsfield Station so easy to get to from other parts of London inc. Croydon (change at Clapham Junction).

Box Office: 020 8333 4457. www.tara-arts.com

You can find out more about Tressell and the book on the Robert Tressell Society website – unfortunately not been up-dated since 2016.


Details about Tressell’s life can be seen at


The book has been in continuous reprinting over the decades. See

The paperback edition is currently available as a Wordsworth Classic.


and in hardback from Lawrence & Wishart.

RTB book

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Croydon events & news at 10 September

Monday 10 September. 7.30pm. Democracy Roadshow

The Democracy Roadshow led by MP Chris Williamson advocating greater member democracy in the Labour Party is in Croydon.

Ruskin House, 23 Coombe Rd.

For details of the campaign see:


Thursday 14 September. 6.30pmm. Council Planning Committee & Planning Sub-committee

Committee: 1 Brighton Rd, 57 Downs Court Rd, 63 Selhurst Rd, 45 The Ridge Way, 37 Woodcrest Grove Rd & 57 Woodcrest Rd.

Sub-committee: 129-131 Addington Rd, 14 Hartley Old Rd, 37-39 Heathhurst Rd, 2 Pollards Hill East,& 5-60 Westow Hill.

Papers can be accessed at


Monday 24 September. Start of collection of old refuse boxes

If you decide not to keep the old waste recycling blue and green boxes for storage use you can put them out on Monday 24 September  empty bar the lids inside, and they will be collected over the following two weeks.


Events at Ruskin House

 Fri 5th Oct – Film on Palestine organised by Croydon TUC and Assembly

Sat 6th Oct – Afternoon tea to raise funds for Ruskin and promote the Georgina King Lewis room – a new library & meeting room in the main Ruskin building.

Fri 26th Oct – ABBA Karaoke night to raise funds for Ruskin

Sat 24th Nov – RNLI fund-raiser organised by Mike Artes

Revised National Planning Policy Framework

The Government has revised the National Planning Policy Framework which takes priority over the London and the Croydon Plans, in that both have to be interpreted in compliance. The new version is a substantial re-write and up-date on the 2012 version. It will take time to assess what the significant changes are and what it means for Croydon’s Local Plan and planning decision making. I have produced an edited version highlighting the revisions. This can be downloaded here:

National Planning Policy Framework 2018 note

The new wheelies and the old recycle bins

Councillor Stuart Collins tells me that he recognises the need for a flexible approach in some streets. Some have already had a different solution because of the nature of their front areas etc, and that more will considered for tailored solutions once the recycle boxes have been collected.

If you find that sometimes the textiles and shoes you leave out for collection are not picked up, this is probably because the cage under the refuse vehicle is too small. Stuart Collins is going to discuss adding another one to increase capacity.

Some ideas for re-using the re-cycle bins:

Competitions could be run for artists and Croydon College to create works of art. A stack could be left at Factory Lane for people to collect compost rather than using plastic bags. Many organisations may want extra storage bins. Why not offer them to schools, to voluntary organisations with premises, to Croydon  Museum, CALAT and the Libraries, and to businesses for storage use. All that would be needed would be to sterilise wash them before passed over.

Council starts formal compulsory purchase for Westfields to start demolition September 2019

Despite the Compulsory Purchase Order being approved in 2015  the Council is only now issuing the notices to relevant owners to consolidate the ownership of the whole site in the Whitgift Foundation.




News in Brief

Croydon pays £29.8m for Croydon Park Hotel. Marketed at £25m; previous owners paid £18.2m under 5 years ago. (Property Week. 7 September)

Debt campaign arrives in Croydon (Croydon Citizen. 4 September)

Council to pay back £1,410,798.15 in business rates. (Council FOI response to C. Smith 17 June)

The Council have re-acquired 54 properties that were formerly sold under the Right to Buy Scheme. (Ditto to Miss Howland 21 August)

The Council does not know how many homeowners that are behind on their mortgage payments.  (Ditto Ms Oluleye 16 August)

Do you know Croydon young families struggling with the costs of child care?

The Trades Union Congress has published a report on the problem across the country.

Working parents with children under five have seen nursery fees rise three times faster than their wages over the past decade, according to new TUC analysis published 3 September. The sub-regional data documents an event greater problem for most families with young children the south east region, where costs have risen 4.5 times faster than the average increase in wages. In the east of England childcare costs have risen 3.4 times faster than the average increase in wages. In Inner London childcare costs have also risen 3.4 times faster than the average increase in wages. The story is less bad in outer London, but even there childcare costs have risen 1.5 times more rapidly than the increase in average wages. This leaves hundreds of thousands of families with a massive shortfall in their monthly budget and it is evidence of the devastating impact of Britain’s cost of living crisis on working mums and dads.


Council Allotments

Towards the end of August the Council had 35 vacant plots for council managed allotment sites. ‘Some of these may be VOID due to flooding/other issues.’ ‘The number of vacant plots will decrease greatly in the coming months as we advertise plots for the forthcoming ‘allotment year’ starting in October.’ ‘The approximate waiting time for a plot ‘varies by site but can typically range from 6-24 months.’

Name Management Address (Nearest Postcode) Total Size of Site Number of Plots on Site
Hartley Down Council Managed CR8 4HL 5.77 acres 88
Mickleham Way Council Managed CR0 0PN 3.11 acres 38
Midday Sun Council Managed CR5 3BE 1.66 acres 22.5
Orchard Avenue Council Managed CR0 7PZ 1.46 acres 20
Pampisford Road Council Managed CR2 6WB 7.3 acres 84
Sanderstead Council Managed CR2 0JA 2.53 acres 45
Bensham Manor Leased to society CR7 7BZ 9.9 acres 152
Biggin Wood Leased to society SE19 3HS 3.83 acres 52
Gonville Road Leased to society CR7 6DN 10.85 acres 163
Heavers Farm Leased to society SE25 6LR Area Silent in Lease 156
Norbury Park Leased to society SW16 3RL 6.72 acres 86
Park Hill Leased to society CR0 5JX 3.5 acres 48
Spa Hill Leased to society SE19 3TY 22 acres 327
South Croydon Leased to society CR2 0BJ 10 acres 146
Smitham Leased to society CR5 3BE 1.84 acres 31

 Source: FOI answer to David Greenwood, 23 August



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Action against fascism and racism

International Conference

National Unity

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