Disrupt! Peterloo and Protest is the People’s History Museum’s year long programme exploring the past, present and future of protest. It marks 200 years since the Peterloo Massacre, a major event in Manchester’s history and a defining moment for Britain’s democracy.
To tie in with this, I’ve written a blog exploring Manchester protest music. It touches on Rock Against Racism, vegetarianism, Kinder Scout, Section 28 and more. Read it here.
I’m excited to announce that I have been commissioned by Manchester Histories to create a piece of audio art that draws inspiration from the 200 year anniversary of the Peterloo Massacre and its accompanying themes of protest, democracy, freedom of speech.
This audio documentary was created to mark the 30th anniversary of Manchester’s anti-Clause 28 march, 1988. Attended by 20,000 people, the protest was a seminal moment in UK LGBT+ history. The piece seeks to evoke the sounds and emotions experienced on that day through interviews with marchers, fragments of archival material and music.
It was also conceived as a tribute to the LGBT+ activists who organised and took part in the demonstration.
The title comes from the chant, “we’re here, we’re queer and we’re not going shopping”.
Section 28 or Clause 28 formed part of the Local Government Act 1988.
Section 28 of that act stated:
(1) A local authority shall not:
a) intentionally promote homosexuality or publish material with the intention of promoting homosexuality
b) promote the teaching in any maintained school of the acceptability of homosexuality as a pretended family relationship
Angela Cooper David Hoyle Kath McDermott Louise Wallwein MBE Luchia Fitzgerald Paul Fairweather
This piece was commissioned by Manchester Pride and Superbia. Special thanks to Greg Thorpe and all who contributed.
It forms part of the Queer Noise exhibition for MDMArchive:
Produced by Abigail Ward.
Abigail Ward is a curator, musician and DJ. Her work explores the place at which music, politics and protest meet. For 10 years she has been documenting the history of LGBT+ music and club life in Greater Manchester through her digital heritage project, Queer Noise. She is a co-founder of Manchester Digital Music Archive.