News from the Working Class Movement Library

Announcements and information


There's lots to get involved in at the library throughout June, including the return of our Invisible Histories talks. We are also looking for new volunteers to join our amazing team!  

The 11th Annual Frow Lecture: Thank you to Dr Katrina Navickas

On Saturday 28th May we held the 11th Annual Frow lecture at the Old Fire Station in Salford. After a two year break, it was brilliant to listen to Dr Katrina Navickas discuss resistance to enclosure in the 19th Century and how these acts of resistance can continue to inspire today. We were also proud to display the Right to Roam banner commissioned by the library and Mid-Pennine Arts and created by James Fox and Ed Hall. Thank you to everyone who came along and we hope to see you all again next year. 

Invisible Histories talk: Elke Weesjes Growing Up Communist in the Netherlands and Britain

Tuesday 21st June, 2pm - 3.30pm, Working Class Movement Library and online

On Tuesday 21st June we will host our next Invisible Histories talk at the library and online. We will be joined by author Dr Elke Weesjes who will present her comparative analysis of the Dutch and British Communist Movements in the 20th Century. Informed by oral history and memory studies, it draws on a series of interviews with 38 British and Dutch cradle communists, autobiographies, archival materials, and existing historiography of both movements. It examines and compares the history of the communist youth movements in Britain and the Netherlands and explores the private and public lives of Dutch and British communists between 1950 and 1970.  Her talk will focus on respondents' political and cultural upbringing and their parents' prescriptions and aspirations.
Find out more on our website including details of how to access the online event. WCML | Events | What's On 

Miss Nobodies: A Play About Lancashire Women; Feisty, Fierce...and Never ForgottenFriday 24th June, 7pm - 8.30-9pm Working Class Movement Library

We are delighted to host a performance of 'Miss Nobodies' by Black Liver Productions.  It is a funny, uplifting play about a little shop in a little town and the larger-than-life women that pass through it from 1919 to the present day. Mixing storytelling with sketches, songs and poetry, Ruth Cockburn and Keith Carter take you through 100 years of retail therapy and the lives of the women in each decade. 

Inspired by the story of working class writer and activist Ethel Carnie Holdsworth, award winning writer, comedian and performer Ruth Cockburn began to explore the lost voices of working class women in Lancashire. Ruth collected sound bites, long form stories and images from women all over Lancashire and they have been woven into the show.  

Tickets cost £8 and are available to book here.  

Join our Volunteer Team

We are looking for new volunteers to join our team! 

We need enthusiastic, friendly volunteers to help welcome visitors to the library and deliver tours of our beautiful building. 

We value a range of skills and experiences and prior knowledge of the library or its collection are not necessary as full training will be given. If you would like to find out more, please get in touch with Belinda Scarlett, Library Manager on

You can also see a full volunteer role description here.

Manchester Histories Festival - Celebration Day

Sunday 12th June, Manchester Monastery, Gorton 11am - 3pm, free entry. 

This year the Manchester Histories Festival is back. The Celebration Day will take place at Manchester Monastery, Gorton on Sunday 12th June. The day is a celebration of the city region's rich history and heritage with over 50 stalls from museums, archives and libraries from across Greater Manchester. The Working Class Movement Library will be represented with a stall at the event. Find out more here.