History Events & News at 23 November

Brian Bloice

From Streatham Society website

Saturday 28 November. 10.30am-4pm. First World War: Caribbean family history day

The National Archives. For programme details and to book go to


Tuesday 1 December. 7pm. Bethany Elen Coyle & the North East Socialist  Singers.

North East Labour History First Tuesday event. Includes Grand Quiz, Raffle and Bring & Buy Book/CD Sale. The Bridge Hotel.

Wednesday 2 December. 7pm. Render the Chartists Defenceless

Launch of Les James’s new book Render the Chartists Defenceless: John Frost’s Voyage with Dr McKechnie to Van Diemen’s Land in 1840 by Les James (£10. ISBN 978-1-78461-232-0 – :  http://www.threeimpostors.co.uk/SHOP-1

Housmans Bookshop, 5 Caledonian Rd, London, N1 9DX.

Entry £3, redeemable against any purchase

Review: “Central to this story is Alexander McKechnie, the convict ship’s doctor. At first McKechnie seemed to be sympathetic to the Chartist prisoners, but, as time passed, Frost was not so sure. I will not reveal all that I learned from this book ……..I think all of those who have an interest in Chartism should ensure they read it. I found it an absorbing read….. Congratulations should also go to Three Impostors, the publishers. They have ensured that this splendid book is beautifully produced.” Stephen Roberts, historian and book critic http://www.thepeoplescharter.co.uk/reviews.htm

Thursday 10 December. 6.30pm. Social democracy’s super-ego? The politics of motherhood in mid-20thc Britain

The Raphael Samuel Memorial Lecture 2015 given by Professor Sally Alexander (Emeritus Professor of Modern History, Goldsmiths University of London; founding editor, History Workshop Journal). Free of charge, no booking required, everyone welcome. Clore Lecture Theatre, Clore Management Centre, Birkbeck, University of London, Torrington Square, London WC1E 7JL.

‘Questions of human nature were vital to the reconstruction of liberal nations in the aftermath of world war.   Stable democratic institutions – bulwarks against totalitarian states of mind and government – depended on understanding how mental life begins, where violence comes from, what is the basis of ethical belief?  Psychoanalysis, a new social science, listening to patients’ fears and anxieties made the super-ego – the inner voice of conscience – the conduit between inner and outside worlds.   Freud’s severe paternal super-ego was challenged in the 1920s.  Child analysts uncovered unconscious fantasies of maternal body and feeling in the first weeks of life.  Feminists, post-suffrage, dug deep into the psyche too.  Demands for both equality and recognition of mothers as independent citizens unsettled liberal and social democratic blueprints for the future.  Britain’s welfare state introduced by Clement Attlee’s two Labour Governments (1945-51), made family life its ethical foundation – meeting an exhausted people’s longing for private life again.

When sixties feminists rebelled against motherhood as destiny, confinement to the home and mothers’ responsibility for the mental health of future generations, the political context of the postwar settlement and with it the darker side of the maternal unconscious was buried in the Cold ar.  Donald Winnicott, paediatrician and psychoanalyst,  whose ‘good enough’ homes and mothers was broadcast into every kitchen in the land during the forties and fifties, had warned that the repressed mother of unconscious fantasy, if unthought through, laid the foundations of rigid  -‘totalitarian ‘ – states of mind.   This lecture will revisit the politics of motherhood in feminist demand and unconscious feeling as they were understood at the time.’

Croydon History

  • Fairfield Halls – Barry Fantoni Remembers


  • 81 London

Kake’s latest historical review of the buildings of London Rd looks at No. 81.


  • Emile Zola in Norwood


  • From Agincourt to Croydon

See my posting at


Sad Death of Brian Bloice

Local historians in South London have been very saddened to hear of the unexpected death of Brian Bloice (1939-2015), whose many walks and talks were very popular. Only recently having been  diagnosed with lung cancer he died in St Christopher’s Hospice, Sydenham, in late October. Brian was Chair of the Streatham Society and President and founder member of the Southwark & Lambeth Archeological Society. As a founder member he took an active part in the Lambeth Local History Forum. He also represented Streatham Society on Heritage Wandsworth Partnership and ensured the Society was involved in the annual Wandsworth Heritage Festival.

Sheila Richardson, Vice Chair & Secretary of the Streatham Society, said: “The classes that Brian taught at Morley College encouraged numerous students to go on to enjoy the  pleasures of local history. His knowledge of planning and architecture was outstanding. Most of all he was full of fun, kind, generous and a good friend. We shall miss him dreadfully.”


About seancreighton1947

Since moving to Norbury in July 2011 I have been active on local economy, housing and environment issues with Croydon TUC and Croydon Assembly. I am a member of the Love Norbury Residents Associations Planning & Transport Committees, and Chair of Nobury Community Land Trust. I write for Croydon Citizen at http://thecroydoncitizen.com. I co-ordinate the Samuel Coleridge-Taylor and Croydon Radical History Networks and edit the North East Popular Politics database. History Project.. I give history talks and lead history walks. I retired in 2012 having worked in the community/voluntary sector and on heritage projects. My history interests include labour movement, mutuality, Black British, slavery & abolition, Edwardian roller skating and the social and political use of music and song. I have a particular interest in the histories of Battersea and Wandsworth, Croydon and Lambeth. I have a publishing imprint History & Social Action Publications.
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