‘The rise and fall of the working class’ will be one of the topics under discussion as part of a North-East Labour History’s week-long programme of talks and events to be held in the lead-up to this year’s Durham Miners’ Gala on Saturday 9 July.
The People: The Rise and Fall of the Working Class, 1910-2010, was described as a “book of the year” by David Kynaston in the Guardian, and “a book we badly beed” by Andy McSmith in the Independent.
Todd’s talk ,which will focus on poverty and the myth of social mobility, will be followed by a general discussion of the issues raised.
The full programme of events is as follows:
Monday 4 July, 9.30am-3pm: school visit
Tuesday 5 July, 7pm–9pm: Remembering Ruskin
The North East Labour History Society presents a ‘First Tuesday’ event led by two formers students of Ruskin College, the home of trade union education. Rob Turnbull and Nigel Todd will reflect on their time at Ruskin and how it shaped their lives and this will be followed by a discussion on the future of working class education both at Ruskin and for the labour movement. All welcome.
Wednesday 6 July, 9.45am–2.30pm: school visit
Friday 8 July, 11am–4pm: Mineworkers Around the World: taking on the giants – and winning
This Independent Working Class Education day school will give us all an insight into the way global multinationals operate and what we, as citizens, can do to stop their nonsense. It starts at 11am and features Elizabeth Cotton who co-authored Global Unions Global Business, described as “the essential guide to international trade unionism”. Other speakers to be confirmed.
Fee: £5.00 includes lunch (pay on the day). To book a place: email email@example.com. This event will take place in the Council Chamber.
Friday 8 July, 4-6pm: State involvement in industrial disputes
Speakers from the ‘Shrewsbury 24 Campaign’ and the ‘Orgreave Truth and Justice Campaign’ will outline how state involvement in industrial disputes resulted in the criminalisation of workers simply for withdrawing their labour. This event will take place in the Council Chamber. All welcome.
Friday 8 July, 4.30pm-5.30pm: A share of a pensioner’s Christmas ‘Bonus’
Esther Johnson and Debbie Ballin will give a presentation of their exhibition on a share of a pensioner’s Christmas ‘bonus’ which premiered at the People’s History Museum, Manchester, from December 2015 to January 2016. The exhibition is part of a larger academic research project called Echoes of Protest and was inspired by material held in the People’s History Museum archive. All welcome.
Friday 8 July, 6pm–7.30pm: The Rise and Fall of the Working Class
Selina Todd is Professor of Modern History at Oxford University and a writer who regularly contributes to the Guardian. Her work focuses on the history of working-class people, poverty, and the myth of social mobility. Her most recent book was the bestseller The People: the rise and fall of the working class, 1910-2010 and this is also the title of her talk. Following Selina’s talk there will be a general discussion of the issues raised. This event will take place in the Council Chamber. All welcome.
Friday 8 July, 7.30pm–9pm: Preview of the ‘Heroes’ concert film
Sunday 6 March 2016 marked the 30th anniversary of an historic concert at London’s Royal Albert Hall. The Concert for Heroes was held to launch the Heroes album, a compilation of tracks donated by local and nationally known musicians. The album raised funds for miners sacked in the bitter dispute of 1984-5.
The concert was filmed but the cost of editing was prohibitively expensive, so it was never screened. The film has now been transferred to a digital format, and includes interviews with some of the surviving participants. This event will take place in the Council Chamber. All welcome.
All meetings, unless stated otherwise will be in the Committee Room at the Miners’ Hall, Redhills, Durham City. All meetings are open to everyone and free, except where stated.