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Upcoming events


Wednesday, 25th October 2017

14:00 – 15:00

The Co-operative Party 100 years on - a reflection by Angela Whitecross

2017 marks the centenary of the Co-operative Party. This talk will consider the formation of the party and its development through the 20th century, exploring its relationship both with the broader co-operative movement and with the Labour Party.

This talk is part of the Invisible Histories series - all welcome, admission free, light refreshments afterwards.

Friday, 27th October 2017

13:00 until
Fri 19 Jan 17:00

Voices of revolution

The world changed in 1917. A century on from the Russian Revolution, the Library's exhibition focuses on the voices of the women and men who witnessed events as they happened.

Exhibitions are open Wed-Fri 1-5pm, and the first Sat of most months 10am-4pm.

Saturday, 4th November 2017

All day

1917 conference

The Peace History Conference and the Library present a day exploring the effect of the Russian Revolutions on the British labour and peace movements. The morning sessions considers the impact nationally and the afternoon covers, with talks, readings and film, the remarkable campaigns by women in the North West.

Tickets £15 (£10 concessions) from

  • Hosted by The Peace History Conference and the Working Class Movement Library
  • Old Fire Station, Crescent, Salford M5
  • More info at
  • Link to this event

Wednesday, 8th November 2017

14:00 – 15:00

The occupation of the factories - women's resistance to factory closure in Scotland, 1981-82. Talk by Andy Clark

Dr Andy Clark (Scottish Oral History Centre) will discuss his research into the wave of factory occupations launched by women in the early ‘80s. At three factories threatened with closure and relocation, the workers took control of the plant and machinery in an attempt to force the companies to change their plans, or to sell them as going concerns.

Andy utilised materials held at the Working Class Movement Library as well as original oral history interviews to analyse these underexamined instances of militant resistance, and will discuss the importance of these in the wider historiography of deindustrialisation in central Scotland during this period.

This talk is part of the Invisible Histories series - all welcome, admission free, light refreshments afterwards.

Saturday, 11th November 2017

14:00 – 17:00

"...the point is to change it" - celebrating Ruth and Eddie Frow

We mark the 30th anniversary of the Library’s move into Jubilee House with an event celebrating our founders, Ruth and Eddie Frow, and their commitment both to working class history and to Communism. There will be speakers and discussion on topics such as the Unemployed Workers Movement of the 1930s, fighting austerity in 2017 and the Young Communist League, as well as poems and songs.

Light refreshments will be served. The event is free, but advance booking is recommended - email trustees @

Thursday, 16th November 2017

18:30 – 20:30

Censorship and the working class reader - celebrating the bicentenary of William Hone's trials

Join us to celebrate the bicentenary of a pivotal event in the history of British censorship.

In December 1817, the radical satirist and publisher William Hone successfully defended himself in three high-profile prosecutions for blasphemous and seditious libel. Fiona Milne will introduce us to Hone’s trials and political satires, examining why the state tried so hard to suppress Hone’s pamphlets, and why Hone’s victory was important.

Katherine Inglis will explore the case of Henry Vizetelly, prosecuted and imprisoned for obscene libel, for publishing Emile Zola’s works in translation. She will use Vizetelly's case to look at how censorship targeted working-class readers.

We'll have a discussion on the issues raised, including censorship, working-class readers, political protest, “forbidden books”, and the changing legal face of censorship in Britain.

WCML has a wealth of related materials in its collections, and there’ll be a chance to handle original documents.

Free; booking details at

Sunday, 19th November 2017

10:00 – 16:00

Wikipedia edit-a-thon

The Library and the People's History Museum are working together in a Heritage Lottery Fund project called Voting for Change, to acquire material related to the fight for the vote - from the Peterloo protest in 1819 to lowering the voting age in 1969.

Following on from last year’s very popular edit-a-thon we are again seeking your help to share knowledge of these significant moments in British history, and invite you to come and spend a day researching and editing Wikipedia. Booking details at

Wednesday, 22nd November 2017

14:00 – 15:00

Brave hearts and missionary zeal - the National Federation of Women Workers 1906-21. Talk by Cathy Hunt

Endemic low pay, deductions and fines, intimidation and insecurity – some of the things women across Britain faced at work in the early 20th century. This talk shows how one union, the all-female National Federation of Women Workers, led by Mary Macarthur, sought not just to help but to encourage activism and fight back at the local level.

Cathy Hunt is a historian and honorary research fellow, Coventry University.

This talk is part of the Invisible Histories series - all welcome, admission free, light refreshments afterwards.

Wednesday, 6th December 2017

14:00 – 15:00

A people's history of the Russian Revolution - talk by Neil Faulkner

In his new Pluto Press book 'A people’s history of the Russian Revolution', which is laced with first-hand testimony, Neil sets out to show how a mass movement of millions, organised in democratic assemblies, mobilised for militant action, and destroyed a regime of landlords, profiteers and warmongers.

This talk runs alongside the Library's exhibition about the Russian Revolution.

It is also part of the Invisible Histories series - all welcome, admission free, light refreshments afterwards.

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