Studio 2: Back to the land

Personal reflections on green and community politics in the 1970s

In 1973 Kath Holden helped found a small commune based on a 135-acre dairy farm in West Wales. She went on to become a smallholder in the same area and disputed her entitlement to common grazing with local farmers, recalling earlier struggles for common-land rights. Later in the decade she volunteered on a farm in the USA, which offered sanctuary for people with mental health difficulties recovering from being in hospital. Inspired by these experiences, she went on to work on one of the earliest […]

Bristol Radical History Festival 2019

Bristol Radical History Group (BRHG) and the Remembering the Real World War I Group (RRWWI) have organised a full programme of events, in collaboration with our hosts at M Shed. Again, we will reveal hidden histories, debate and agitate for a future of better pasts. The 2019 festival has two main themes: 1919: Year of Revolutions Green History: from 18th Century roots to Extinction Rebellion The aftermath of the First World War was one of the most revolutionary moments in the Twentieth Century. […]
Section: Event Series
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The South West Tribunal

Conscientious Objectors in WWII

Foreword During the Second World War, over 60,000 men and 1,000 women applied to register as conscientious objectors (COs) in England, Wales and Scotland. Although this was at least three times as many as in the First World War; it has remained something of an under reported history. The experience of First World War and Second World War COs vary in a number of ways. Sympathetically framed legislation and the fact that the tribunals came under the auspices of the Ministry of Labour rather than […]

The last piece of the jigsaw

Solving the mystery of the forgotten paupers of 100 Fishponds Road

Our dead are never dead to us, until we have forgotten them Introduction One evening in 2010 some members of Bristol Radical History Group (BRHG) were poring over some old maps of Eastville and discovered a forgotten burial ground at Rosemary Green, just round the corner from where they lived. Further investigation showed that the site was in fact the burial ground for Eastville Workhouse at 100 Fishponds Road, an enormous institution that had opened in 1847 and whose buildings were demolished […]

Radical Culture

Discourse, Resistance and Surveillance, 1790-1820

By David Worrall
Worral's book concentrates on the period of the French revolution and the Napoleonic wars. The narrative is based mainly in London, and looks at those who wanted to replicate the French Revolution in Britain. The main thread looks at those who believed in the work of Thomas Spence, who has largely been ignored in the mainstream history books. Spence was an ultra-radical, who saw the main problems with British society in land ownership. He wanted common land ownership, on a corporate basis, but […]

Bristol’s Nautical Women

Glenside Museum, The Chapel, Glenside Campus, Blackberry Hill, Stapleton, Bristol BS16 1DD An evening of nautical intrigue! ​Author Rosemary Caldicott will be telling us about her new book in which she investigated the intriguing, often tragic, histories of Bristol's nautical women (some who dressed as men to get to sea). Living in Bristol, we're all quite familiar with images of sailing ships - but the focus is usually on the men who built or worked on them. Rosemary wants to bring to life […]

Mining Labour Wars

The Pennsylvania Coal Company and Organized Crime in the Anthracite Coalfields of Pennsylvania

miscellaneous events 2019
Based on his co-authored book, Anthracite Labor Wars, Prof. Bob Wolensky will speak about a 40-year "labour war" that resulted from the mining arrangements between the Pennsylvania Coal Company and a gang of organized criminals. Beginning in 1916, the company decided to subcontract and, later, to lease mineral rights to the mobsters in an effort to discipline the labour force, enhance productivity, and boost profits. Statistics indicated that the scheme worked quite well when it came to […]

Bedminster Union Workhouse

The Life and Death of Hannah Wiltshire

As part of their History Week, Bedminster Library (Bedminster Parade, Bedminster, Bristol BS3 4AQ) have a talk by Rosemary Caldicott, author of The Life and Death of Hannah Wiltshire: A Case Study of Bedminster Union Workhouse. Rosemary will tell the the true story of how in 1850s the local community pulled together to uncover murder in the Flax Bourton workhouse.

Performance: War in Mind

This new powerful dramatic performance looks at the real lives of people affected by shell shock in the First World War. Driver William Charles Phillips, a Tetbury man who though he never actively fought at the front, died in Gloucester Asylum from paralysis in 1917. Doctor Harold Hills, later to be a Stroud doctor, who worked with sufferers at the Front and prevented many men being shot for desertion through his testimonies. Violet Hall, a wife and mother from a Gloucestershire village who lost […]

Pauper Graves Memorial Unveiling

1.00pm, Wednesday May 8th, Avonview Cemetery, Beaufort Road, St. George, Bristol, BS5 8EN

miscellaneous events 2019
In 2012 Bristol Radical History Group launched a project to research into the thousands of unmarked graves of paupers from the Eastville workhouse (at 100 Fishponds Road) who were buried in nearby Rosemary Green. In 2014 the Eastville Workhouse Memorial Group (EWMG) was formed to commemorate and memorialise the 4,084 people who lived and died in Eastville workhouse and were interred at the site between 1851 and 1895, along with another 118 inmates' bodies which were sold to medical schools. In […]

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