Sunday, 11 May 2014

Salford Conservative Party's untruths - a reply from Working Class Movement Library

The Trustees of the
Working Class Movement Library have written to the Electoral Commission in protest at a leaflet issued by Salford Conservatives.

The leaflet was distributed by the local Conservative Party in support of candidates in the forthcoming local elections. In it they state that the Library has “been receiving tens of thousands of pounds of your money over the last few years and yet you cannot walk in and read any material”.

The Library, along with many hundreds of other charities in the City, does indeed get a council grant each year. This is to recognise the great importance of its world-renowned collections and the work it does with the people of Salford. Along with most other charities the grant has been reducing over the past few years. In return for this grant the Library opens its doors to any member of the public on a daily basis between Tuesday and Friday. All are welcome, entirely free of charge, to read any of the quite extraordinary range of material that make up the collection.

Maggie Cohen, Chair of Trustees, said: “The Conservatives have now, in effect, told every household in Salford that they cannot use the Library. This is not merely untrue, but actively detrimental to the huge efforts constantly being made by Library volunteers and staff to encourage local people to come and share the Library’s fantastic resources.

Everyone is welcome to the free talks, film shows, exhibitions and tours held here. Just next week we have three free film screenings plus Salford’s only contribution to the national Museums at Night celebration, and we are looking forward to taking part in the Spirit of Salford Festival later this month with the Salford launch of a new biography of Shelagh Delaney. A recent Lottery-funded oral history project involved us working with students from Buile Hill Visual Arts College, and we were delighted when they won the Best Schools Histories award at the recent Manchester Histories Festival for their part in our project. We would like to assure everyone that they will receive a warm welcome if they pop in to visit this Salford jewel”.

The Library collection contains books, pamphlets, personal archives, photographs, plays, poetry, songs, banners, posters, badges, cartoons, journals, biographies, newspaper reports and more. They tell the story of Britain's working classes from the earliest days of industrialisation to the present day.

It is open to the public on a drop-in basis on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday afternoons. At other times visitors are welcome to make appointments to view or use the collection. Admission is free. It's at 51 The Crescent, Salford, M5 4WX.

The Library’s film festival Last Cage Down runs from 12-14 May –  . 

The Library’s Museums at Night event takes place on 15 May - 

More about the Community Histories Awards.

1 comment:

  1. It sounds like the policies of your Conservatives are like the tactics of our Conservatives. Ours seem to have a particular dislike for libraries and archives.


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