Bristol women campaigning for peace in World War One [June Hannam] June Hannam will focus on women in Bristol who opposed militarism and sought a negotiated peace. The most high profile activists were Mabel Tothill, Annie Townley and Mrs Higgins, all socialists from the Independent Labour Party (ILP). Others, such as the Quaker Helen Sturge, had been involved in the pre-war suffrage movement. The talk will explore what women did to push forward their cause and the ideas that underpinned their […]
A look at the early development of Bristol's aeroplane industry and how Bristol planes helped 'police' the empire in the interwar years. Special reference to Afghanistan, Iraq and Aden (Yemen).
Starting with St Mary Redcliffe church, this walk takes in other historic Diocese of Bristol city centre churches where 'the life and work' of Edward Colston is provided religious legitimacy on an annual basis. Along the way we will share the most recent historical research regarding this man's involvement with the transatlantic slave trade and discover how the Victorian elite created a 'cult of Colston' that is now said to form part of our city's 'identity'. At our final stop, Bristol […]
The History Workshop movement was a grassroots coalition of radical-academic, feminist, amateur and labour historians, which was founded at Ruskin College in the late 1960s under the guidance of the Marxist historian Raphael Samuel. This talk will explore the origins, development and eventual decline of the movement, with particular interest paid to the social composition of the movement, the different forms of “doing history” it pioneered, and the connections it established with similar […]
More details to follow....
A story of struggle during the First World War - full of intrigue, escapes, comradeship...and bikes. Recommended for adults and older children. Three showings at: 11:30am, 1:30pm and 3:30pm in Gallery Level 1. Otherstory is a collective of puppeteers, artists and activists based in Bristol. They aim to tell stories that are playful and political, radical and magical.
A series of 10 minute 'taster talks' covering recently or soon to be published Bristol Radical History Group texts. These include: Lady Blackshirts: The Perils of Perception – suffragettes who became fascists [Rosemary Caldicott] During the 1930’s a small group of ultra-nationalistic women, who considered themselves feminists, joined Oswald Mosley’s British Union of Fascists. Surprisingly some of these women were former high ranking members of the suffragette movement. The Smoke-Dragon and How […]
Conscientious Decision-Making [Lois Bibbings] This talk gives a brief insight into what First World War conscientious objectors to military service meant when they talked about 'conscience' or the reasoning behind their decision and how their beliefs or thinking impacted upon the course of action they took during conscription. It does so by telling stories about a few of those who objected. Martyrs or Rebels? Another side of Britain’s 1914-18 war resisters [Cyril Pearce] Our view of Britain’s […]
The Forest of Dean in Gloucestershire - royal larder or people's larder? The Charter of the Forests, a lesser-known but wider-ranging companion to the Magna Carta, confirmed any "freemen" or commoners could help themselves to many of the resources of forests across England. Within 500 years, those subsisting in the woods were declared illegal squatters as aristocrats and the Crown tried to fence them out and grab all the iron ore, coal, timber and land. Successive waves of tenacious, described […]
More details to follow...
The biggest revolt in the history of the British Army occurred during 1919 involving hundreds of thousands of soldiers. Massive mutinies by stroppy soldiers humiliated generals, terrified politicians and undermined the British Empire. British, Dominion and Colonial troops who had mostly obeyed their officers during the First World War decided that enough was enough. They demanded an end to military bullshit, speedy demobilisation and much, much more – and they mostly got what they wanted! In […]
Rob Turnbull: Noah Ablett - The Miners’ Next Step and Welsh syndicalism Martin Wright: Wales and Socialism Before the Great War: the universal and the particular in the growth of a new movement More details to follow...
A performative reading of the tragic tale of Private Archibald Knee and Dorothy Beard who died together in 1916: a mutual suicide of two victims of the First World War Stuart Butler and Rachel Simpson will give readings from Dorothy and Archibald, a folding publication, with illustrations, produced to commemorate two tragic deaths. Designed and illustrated by Katie Johnston, an RCA graduate from Nailsworth, near Stroud, this collaborative book features texts by Stuart and Alice Butler, on the […]
This talk examines the lives of three British migrants who became Individualist anarchists and part of the network around the journal Liberty. The Bristolian activist and poet, Miriam Daniell was a defiant free spirit who clashed fiercely with the basket maker and writer, William Bailie. Bailie later lived in a free union with her close friend from Bristol, Helena Born and wrote the first biography of America’s original anarchist, Josiah Warren. Bailie and Born’s friend, Archibald Simpson, a […]