People's History Museum Blog

PHM is the national museum of democracy, telling the story of its development in Britain: past, present, and future. On this blog we share behind the scenes stories, coverage of our exhibitions, events, Learning Programme and highlights from our unique collection.

From left to right: Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, Amalgamated Society of Watermen and Lightermen & Withington Against the Poll Tax banners @ People's History Museum

2019 Banner Display: A newfound respect for the visual

7 February 2019


PHM’s 2019 banner display has been carefully curated to reflect key moments of protest in Greater Manchester and across Britain, representing a mix of creatively disobedient ideas and actions along the road to democratic reform, from the Peterloo Massacre in Manchester in 1819 to today.

We asked historian and Head Writer Peter Morgan, from our friends at The Radical Tea Towel Company to review our new display of banners.



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1983 Bermondsey by-election campaign leaflet © Peter Tatchell

PHM’s Playwright in Residence Blog 2 of 3

24 January 2019


Stephen M Hornby, award winning Manchester writer and Playwright in Residence to People’s History Museum (PHM), blogs about writing his new play, First Rumours, for us.  It’s about seasoned human rights campaigner Peter Tatchell’s time as a Labour Party candidate in the hugely controversial 1983 Bermondsey by-election.

First Rumours is given a first rehearsed reading at PHM on Sunday 10 February 2019 at 3.00pm.  The reading will be followed by a Q&A with Peter Tatchell, facilitated by LGBT activist and historian Paul Fairweather.  Booking essential.

Stephen undertook several lengthy interviews with Peter to write the play and this second blog is about a moment where it went a little wrong in the first of those interviews.

Blog 2 of 3: Mr Tatchell discovers he is gay



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Rose Lamartine Yates’ tea cup and plate © People's History Museum

Suffragette tea set on display at People’s History Museum

18 December 2018


To complement the public display of a suffragette tea set designed by Sylvia Pankhurst we asked Dr Alexandra Hughes-Johnson, suffrage historian and Women in the Humanities Research Co-ordinator at the University of Oxford, for the story of its former owner, suffragette Rose Lamartine Yates (1875-1954).

Until recently Rose Lamartine Yates has remained a relatively unknown figure in the history of the women’s suffrage movement and despite attempts by historians Elizabeth Crawford, Gillian Hawtin and Gail Cameron to shed light onto Rose’s suffrage career, she is often still remembered for her friendship with the Emily Wilding Davison and her role as the first guard of honour to her coffin at Emily’s funeral on the 14 June 1913.



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Final clay of Our Emmeline by Hazel Reeves © Hazel Reeves

Our Emmeline – my statue by Hazel Reeves

10 December 2018


On Friday 14 December 2018 a statue of Emmeline Pankhurst will be unveiled in her home city of Manchester.  Designed by sculptor Hazel Reeves, this will be the highlight of a campaign to celebrate the significant contribution of women to the city and will take place on the day that exactly 100 years ago the first women voted in a UK general election for the first time.

We asked Hazel to tell us about the commission in her own words.



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Steven Fielding @ People's History Museum

Steven Fielding highlights five objects in a series of films for PHM

6 December 2018


Steven Fielding, Professor of Political History at the University of Nottingham discusses the five highlights he chose from the People’s History Museum’s collection for a series of new films.

In these films Steven explain the objects’ relevance to our own times, and for those who want to take their journey into the past a bit further, link them to the national Labour Party archive; the complete holdings of which are housed at the museum.



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