‘The Short Hot Summer’: The August Riots in the UK, 2011

Miscellaneous 2012
The Hold Out 2313 San Pablo Ave, Oakland CA, USA The August ‘riots’ in Britain last summer were portrayed by the media and politicians as the actions of ‘greedy feral youth’ or ‘gangs’ within a ‘criminal underclass’. Most of these politically loaded explanations were presented before what had happened was even known. Using hard research and the voices of participants, this event will provide an analysis of the ‘riots’ of August, considering what (actually) happened, who was involved and how they […]

1932 Old Market Riot Map

On Tuesday 23rd February an estimated 3,000 to 15,000 protesters from the National Unemployed Workers' Movement (NUWM) march to protest about a cut in unemployment benefits. The police had banned the march but the NUWM were not deterred. The peaceful procession followed a winding route but ended up on Old Market Street where they were faced by a double row of police with batons drawn and backed up by mounted officers at the junction with Castle Street. The marchers were unaware that the Chief […]

Breviary Stuff Publications

Breviary Stuff Publications is concerned with ‘history from below’, the history of ordinary people and our perpetual struggles for some fairness and freedom from the oppression that we have been and are forced to endure in our daily lives. We are not concerned with the history of ‘great men‘, the wealthy, the powerful, the famous. We are interested in what ordinary people felt about the situations that they found themselves in, how their lives were shaped by them, how they reacted to them, the […]

The 1831 Hammer Film

The night before the 1831 riots, hundreds of Sledge Hammers were 'borrowed' from the Acraman's Iron Foundry in Bathurst Basin (now Bristol General Hospital). These hammers were used during the riots to break down the doors of the four prisons in Bristol. The day after the riots, all but two of these hammers were returned. This fact, at the time, was used as evidence of prior planning by the "mob". The hammers were recreated for the Bristol Radical History Week 2006 exhibition by Jasper Johns at […]

Bread or Batons?: The Old Market ‘riots’

The pictures on this page were found in Bristol Central Reference Library, to reproduce please email refandinfo@bristol.gov.uk The April and August 'riots' of 2011 in Bristol, along with those of the 1980s, have been characterised as being exceptional events in the city's history. However, Bristol has a long history of violent disturbances from the food and price 'riots' of the 18th Century, through the reform uprisings of 1831 to 'Black Friday' in 1892. One period which has received less […]

The BRH Summer Party On Brandon Hill

Miscellaneous 2007
Reclaim the Hill!: A celebration of the radical history of Brandon Hill and Stop the College Green Dispersal Order. Despite the vagaries of the English summer of 2007, a small but feisty mob of radical historians, skate boarders and cider drinkers gathered on Brandon Hill in Clifton on August 19th. We were both celebrating the 175th anniversary of the invasion of the Great Reform Dinner and protesting against the dispersal order served on Bristol citizens this summer. What is the connection? […]

The Haymarket, Chicago and Mayday

Miscellaneous 2012
On Tuesday May 4th 1886 near the Haymarket, Chicago, police attempted to violently disperse 200 remaining members of a peaceful demonstration called to protest about the police killing the day before of two workers at a strike at the McCormick Reaper Works. As the police moved against the crowd a bomb was thrown by an unknown person which killed a police officer and in the ensuing chaos the police opened fire killing and wounding demonstrators and police alike. In the days following the incident […]

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