To read more about the events of the Peterloo Massacre, please follow me into the archives...
1pm - 3pm Sunday 16th August 2015
Join us for the biggest commemoration yet.
There'll be the same banners, marchers arriving, and the powerful reading of the names of the dead, as before, but we then want to try something new - 'The Peterloo Picnic' - thereby completing what the protesters originally set out to do.
We'll be laying out a giant version of the Peterloo 'spiderweb map' (below) on the apron, with picnic blankets marking each of the towns that send marchers to St Peter's Fields. We then want people from those areas to occupy them... with each empty blanket being an invitation for that town to join us in 2016.
2015 Peterloo anniversary map
Lightweight tape will make up the black lines linking all the towns, with Manchester itself marked by our giant Liberty Cap statue.
Manchester Central Conference Centre the centre are being really co-operative and helpful, and have offered the use of the South half of the space for the commemoration, despite them having three events on that weekend.
We have a provisional 'yes' to participate from Maxine Peake, John Henshaw, Dave Haslam, The Lord Mayor (the old civic role, not the new disputed 'political' one) Dr Robert Poole and Sheilagh Lemoine (who's a descendent of one of the original protesters.) Hopefully there'll be more to follow...
We want people to bring a simple meal of bread and cheese, and while they eat and chat our acoustic musicians will serenade them with appropriate songs.
The more costumes, banners, hats, bonnets, shawls, hampers, Liberty Caps, the better! Please bring signs on poles that will indicate the name of your town / blanket!
This year we aim to get the basic idea out there, but in the years leading up to 2019 we'll also be aiming to greatly expand the event and hold a mock election based on policies not politicians. The protesters plans to hold an illegal vote in 1819 was a key and much overlooked reason for why they were attacked so brutally.
There'll be modest amplification this year, as with the numbers expanding, it's become increasingly difficult to hear the ceremony. The event should be finished by 3pm... although there's often other Peterloo events in the city that evening.
Join us! Bring all of the above! And most importantly, bring others!
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