General History Events at 24 September

To early DecemberDare Devil Rides to Jarama – autumn tour

Marking the 80th anniversary of the Spanish Civil War, Dare Devil Rides To Jarama is a world première based on the experiences of the International Brigades during the Spanish Civil War. Looking at the powerful political and economic forces that engulfed 1930s Europe, the play follows why so many ordinary people made the extraordinary choice to leave family and livelihoods and fight in a brutal war so far from home.

It focuses on the contrasting lives of Clem Beckett, a Lancashire blacksmith and famous star of the speedway track, and Christopher Caudwell, a renowned writer, poet and philosopher. Both men were killed together at Jarama in February 1937, having become friends as members of the British Battalion’s machine-gun company.

Through song, poetry, movement and dance, Dare Devil Rides To Jarama captures the raw passions and emotions of the time.

For further details and full diary of dates around the country till early  December see

Wednesday 28 September. Start of We Only Want the Earth exhibition about James Connolly

Working Class Movement Library, Salford.

Wednesday 28 September. 6pm. ALewis Mates, From Tyneside to Fratricide: north-easterners in the Spanish Civil War
Talk by Lewis Mates.
Newcastle Society of Antiquaries’, Mining Institute, Westgate Road, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE1 1SE.

Thursday 29 September. 6.30 for 7pm. Bi-Planes, Tri-Planes, The Lancaster Bomber, The Vulcan

Talk by Philip Jarrett about Wandsworth’s innovative aeronautical pioneer Alliott Verdon Roe, ((1877-1958).

Roe attempted to build his first bi-plane in the back garden of 47 West Hill, progressing to building a shed at Brooklands and, eventually, forming a company (Saunders Roe) which produced the Avro Bi-plane used in WW1 and then the famous Lancaster bomber of WW2 and, post war, the Vulcan bomber. He was knighted in 1929 and a borough Green Plaque commemorates him on a wall on West Hill.  

Battersea Society, St Mary’s Church, Battersea Church Road SW11 3NA.

Tickets £5 (on door)

Friday 30 September. 7pm. River Effra, South London’s Secret Spine

Lambeth Heritage Festival talk by Jon Newman (Lambeth archivist), Brixton Library, Brixton Hill

Friday 30 September. 8pm. Henry Smith – 17th century tycoon

Talk by Lucy Lethbridge.

Wandsworth Historical Society, Friends Meeting House, Wandsworth High Street, SW18.

Saturday 1 October. 12 noon. Celebration of the life of James Connolly

Connolly has been described as ‘the strongest and most thorough-going advocate of revolutionary socialism in the British Isles’, and his life will be expressed through his writings, journalism, historical works, poetry, songs and plays.

North West Labour History Society at Working Class Movement Library Salford.

Tickets price £5 (£2.50 concessions) are available on the door.

Thursday 20 October. 7 for 7.30pm Morgan Crucible – an enduring Battersea landmark

Jon Newman, archivist and historian will, in the course of his talk, relate how, although demolished almost 40 years ago, the functional factory manufacturing specialist products for the metallurgy industry inadvertently became an icon of English art through the works of James Whistler.

Battersea Society. St Mary’s Church, Battersea Church Road SW11 3EN

Cost: £5 (on door)

Saturday 29 October.  10.30am-4pm. Fifteenth Essex Conference on Labour History

Speakers: Francis Beckett (Labour historian and author) on The Left in the mid-20th Century and the Role of Aneurin Bevan; Ivan Gibbons (former Director of Irish Studies at St. Mary’s University Twickenham, and Director of the Irish Cultural Centre, Hammersmith) on Ireland – the 1916 Rising and Social Progress; Chris Sumner (George Lansbury Memorial Trust) on George Lansbury and the 1921 Poplar Rates Dispute; Stan Newens ((former MP, MEP and Labour historian) on A Life in the Labour Movement.

Labour Heritage & Essex Labour Campaign Forum. The Labour Hall, Collingwood Road, Witham, CM8 2EE, (adjacent to Witham railway station).

Saturday 5 November. 5.30pm The Ghosts of Garden Court: John Thelwall and the Haunted Summer of 1816

57 Lincoln’s Inn Fields

3.30pm. Tour round 57 Lincolns Inn Fields with David Watkinson

4.30pm. Tea & cake

5pm. Thelwall Lecture by Professor Lecture by Judith Thompson (with Q&A)

6.30pm. Meal at Ship Tavern

Though you can turn up on the day, details regarding registration, etc., will be available soon.

To 8 January 2017. Feeding the 400 Exhibition

This exhibition considers the multi-faceted impact that food and eating regimes had on children at the Foundling Hospital from 1740 to 1950. It will demonstrate how the institution’s food choices were far more than just questions of economy, nutrition and health. It explores the connections between what, when, where and why the foundlings ate what they ate; the beliefs and science that underpinned these decisions; and their physiological and psychological effects.

The Foundling Museum, London, WC1N 1AZ.

Durham Branch WEA Study Group

People’s Bookshop, Saddlers Yard, Durham DH1 3NP

Oct 9  The Irish Community in the North East Bill Corcoran (NE Irish Society)

Oct 16  Early Ireland and the Origins of the two traditions   Prof. Robin Frame

Oct 23  Wolfe Tone

Nov 6  The Great Famine Joy Farms

Nov 13  The Easter Rising Bob Harrison

Nov 20  The Rise and Fall of the Workers’ Party of Ireland, 1956- 1998  David Connolly

For further information or to book your place at the bookshop or Durham Branch WEA  01913881440.

9-11 June 1917. John Thelwall: Radical Networks and Reforming Circles, 1780-1820

Concides with the anniversary of the Pentrich Rising and the annual commemoration of the death of Tom Paine.

Programme will include a tour. Derby has the Bell Inn where Thelwall’s friend Dr. Crompton read an address to the French Convention in 1792, the new premises of the Derby Local Studies library, Derby Art Gallery (inc. collection of Joseph Wright paintings), Sadler Gate’s historic buildings, the site of Erasmus Darwin’s house, silk mill museum. There will also be a radical pub night with musical entertainment organised by Jim O’Boyle. There may also be trips to Derby Arboretum, Darley Abbey and Arkwright Mills.

New books about Thelwall:

Judith Thompson, John Thelwall: Selected Poetry and Poetics, Palgrave Macmillan, 2015 (ISBN 978-1-137-34482-3)

Jon Mee: Print, Publicity and Popular Radicalism in the 1790s: The Laurel of Liberty. (Cambridge UP. 2016)

My email for future event details: 

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About seancreighton1947

Since moving to Norbury in July 2011 I have been active on local economy issues with Croydon TUC and Croydon Assembly, and am a member of the latter's Environment Forum. I am a member of the 5 Norbury Residents Associations Joint Planning Committee, and a Governor of Norbury Manor Primary School. I write for Croydon Citizen at I co-ordinate the Samuel Coleridge-Taylor and Croydon Radical History Networks and advise the North East People's 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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