The Chartists are commonly regarded as the first mass working class movement of the 19th Century. Their demands for the vote, secret ballots and the end of property qualifications are now standard fare in most democracies but at the time rocked the British establishment to the core, leading many to think that revolution was imminent. We bring together a panel of renowned historians to discuss the origins, achievements and the local significance of the Chartist Movement in the South West.
Dorothy Thompson has devoted much of her academic life to the study of the Chartists and is a world-wide authority on the movement. Owen Ashton is Emeritus Professor of Modern British Social History at Staffordshire University and an expert on Chartism in the West Country. Les James is a community history activist who has written and publicised events commemorating the Newport Chartist Rising.
This event is taking place in the New Room, John Wesley’s original chapel in Bristol built in 1739. This Grade 1 Listed Building is a beautifully preserved, yet functioning, part of Bristol’s radical history and has a small museum in the reading room on the first floor. Visitors are welcome Monday to Saturday, 10am to 4pm. So why not turn up early for the talk and have a good look round?
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