Events

Read below for a list of forthcoming & past events relevant to the bicentenary.

Wednesday 5th April 2017:

Luddite Memorial Lecture 2017 - Dr Katrina Navickas (University of Hertfordshire)
The fourth annual lecture. More details TBA
Venue: Huddersfield University

Saturday 6th May 2017:

A talk on the Pentrich Rising - John Belchem
Organised by Nottinghamshire & Derbyshire Labour History Society. More details TBC
Venue: Nottingham Mechanics Institute

Please let us know about any events you are planning which you would like us to add to this page.



Past Events:

Tuesday, 22nd February 2011:
“Engines of Mischief”: The Luddite Disturbances of 1811/12 
by Adrian Randall, Professor of Social History & Pro-Vice-Chancellor. Birmingham University.
10.30 - 11.30 a.m. Tickets are sold on a first-come, first-served basis and are limited, price £10.

Saturday, 12th March 2011:
Maurice Barley Lecture: The Luddites: 200 Years on – John Beckett, Chairman.
In March 1811, two hundred years ago, the first stocking frames were broken by protesters who came to be called Luddites. In this lecture, John Beckett will recall the events of 200 years ago, the context in which they occurred, and the legacy of the Luddite disturbances in and around Nottingham and Loughborough. Nottingham Mechanics Institute, 2.45 p.m.

Friday, 6th May 2011:
Birkbeck Institute for the Humanities - The Luddites, without Condescension: A Conference on the 200th Anniversary of the Frame-breakers’ Uprising
In the Spring of 2011 Birkbeck will host a one-day conference to mark the 200th anniversary of the uprising of the handloom weavers in the dawn of the industrial revolution under the command of the mythic General Ludd. Even though the movement was sparked by skilled artisans, “luddite” has ever since been a byword for technophobes facing backwards and mindless rejection of progress. The conference will gather historians of luddism and others interested in what in 1800 was called “the machinery question”, to consider not only the historical luddites, urban and rural, but also contemporary movements of direct resistance, north and south, to capitalist modernization – for example, anti-nuclear movements, opposition to agricultural transgenics, resistance to big dams. The concluding session will address the issue of modernity itself, its model of temporality and the assumption that history is future-directed. Speakers will include: Iain Boal, Beth Clark, T.J. Clark, Anna Davin, Eric HobsbawmPeter Linebaugh.
10am - 6pm Room B34 Birkbeck Main Building, London. Programme

Wednesday, May 11th 2011:
The Luddites 200 years on - John Beckett
In March 1811, two hundred years ago, the first stocking frames were broken in Arnold by protestors who came to be called Luddites. John Beckett will recall the events of 200 years ago, the context in which they occurred, and the legacy of the Luddite disturbances in and around Nottingham and Loughborough, notably perhaps the use of the term Luddite today to mean anyone opposed to industrial or technological progress.
For further details and to book your place, contact the Nottingham Local Studies Library 0115 915 2873 or via email local_studies.library@nottinghamcity.gov.uk A facebook event page is here
Nottingham Central Library, 7.00 p.m.

Thursday, 2nd June 2011:
'What did the Luddites ever do for us? A 200th anniversary workshop' - Society for Participation, Engagement, Action and Knowledge Sharing
A day-long meeting which "is an opportunity to explore Luddite perspectives on the crises we face in 2011 and to plan what activities might be appropriate in the future. It will be a relaxed atmosphere that will allow us to share our thinking and fire our imaginations. There will the opportunity to read short sections of Luddite, or Luddite inspired, prose or poetry."
King's Place, London. Programme.

Monday, 6th June 2011:
'Public Meeting on the Luddites' - Huddersfield Anarchist League
The speaker is Alan Brooke, co-author of 'Liberty or Death: Radicals, Republicans & Luddites, 1793-1823', which is being relaunched at the meeting. HAL will also be talking about their plans to make a film.
The Albert (public house), 36 Victoria Lane, Huddersfield, HD1 2QF7.00 p.m. Free of charge

Wednesday, 8th June 2011:
'Celebrating the 200 Anniversary of the Luddite Uprisings: Technology Politics Then and Now' Luddites200 Organising Forum
In 1811-12 Artisan cloth workers in the Midlands and North of England rose up against factory owners who were imposing new machines and putting them out of work. Since the 1950s the Luddites have been painted as fools opposed to all technology and progress, but in fact the Luddites were very selective in their attacks, breaking only machines they thought were 'Hurtful to Commonality'.

What can the Luddites teach us about the ongoing use of technology to replace workers' jobs, as well as issues like GM food and nuclear power? Can we escape the myth that technology always brings progress? On the anniversary of the first action against a GM crop site in Britain, come and discuss the issues with speakers from the Luddites200 Organising Forum, Stop GM, the Communication Workers Union, and the Stop Nuclear Network.

PLUS! Luddite entertainment
Feminist Library, 5 Westminster Bridge Rd, London, SE1 7XW. 7.00 p.m. Free of charge (donations welcomed) Facebook event page


11th - 26th June 2011:
'Yarn' by Tim Shore
Part of Th'Owd Towser Show at the Holmfirth Arts Festival, 'Yarn' is a site-specific artwork for the former cell space on the upper floor of Th’Owd Towser, a 16th Century church lock-up and Holmfirth's oldest building. 450 wool dolls hang from the ceiling of the cell, representing 450 Holmfirth men who were ‘twisted-in’ - taking the Luddite Oath - during the Luddite uprising of 1812-1813. Yarn references the history of the building and Holmfirth’s hidden history of Luddite activity.

Tuesday, 21st June 2011:
'Tis Death to Break a Frame: The Story of a Stockinger' by Sinfonia VIVA
Sinfonia ViVA returns with a brand new oratorio written by James Redwood and Hazel Gould in partnership with the Ruddington Framework Knitters' Museum to mark the 200th anniversary of the Luddite uprising. 180 young people from across Derby and Bolsover will join sinfonia ViVA to perform this new work themed around the Luddites.

Conductor: David Lawrence
Composer: James Redwood
Writer: Hazel Gould

Assembly Rooms, Derby, 7.00pm Tickets £3.00. Contact the Derby LIVE Box Office: 01332 255800

Wednesday, 22nd June 2011:
'Innocent or Guilty?' - Phil Hagerty
Miners, Luddites and a fatal fight in 19th Century Walkden.
Working Class Movement Library, 51 The Crescent, Salford, M5 4WX2.00 p.m. Free of Charge.

August 19th to 21st 2011:
Dark Mountain Project - Uncivilisation 2011 
A festival curated by the Dark Mountain Project includes the session 200 years of General Ludd:
2011 is the bicentenary of the Luddite uprising against machine civilisation. This session explores the real story of the Luddites, and looks at what lessons we can learn for the digital age. Everyone knows the Luddites were just technophobes, right? Wrong, says Warren Draper, who invites us to revisit the history of their uprising. The followers of the mythical General Ludd weren’t opposed to technology itself, but to machinery which was destroying a way of living in which people had control over their own lives. Their view – that technology is never neutral – resonates with the decisions we face today, argues Dougald Hine. Relating the technology politics of 200 years ago to our current situation, he invites us to question the influence of Stewart Brand’s Whole Earth story over the environmental movement and its ways of thinking about technology. Meanwhile, artist Rachel Horne connects the experience of the Luddite rebellion to the more recent experiences of the Miner’s Strike and its legacy for the community where she grew up in South Yorkshire.

This session takes place on Saturday 20th August at 2.15 p.m. Day tickets are available. The venue is the Sustainability Centre, Hampshire

Saturday 22nd October 2011:
Celebrating the 200 Anniversary of the Luddite Uprisings: Technology Politics Then and Now - London Anarchist Bookfair
In 1811-12 Artisan cloth workers (Luddites) in the Midlands and the North rose up against factory owners who were imposing new machines and putting them out of work. The Luddites only broke machines that were 'hurtful to commonality'. What can the Luddites teach us about how to successfully resist anti-democratic technology practices, such as GM crops and creating unemployment, today? Organised by: Corporate Watch and the Luddites200 Organising Forum
11.00 a.m. to 12 noon, Room 3.20, Queen Mary University of London

August 7th to October 30th 2011:
Rural Life Centre - 'Riotous Assembly' 
2011 marks the bicentenary of the Luddites who rebelled against the "new machines" and the unemployment they caused. This period of unrest spread south through Britain and our exhibition will also cover the Swing and local workhouse riots.

Sunday 30th October 2011:
Luddites 200th anniversary workshop at #OccupyLSX - Luddites 200 Organising Forum
As part of the Occupy the London Stock Exchange protest, this workshop will examine the Luddites stand "against machinery hurtful to commonality" & the subsequent distortion of it by historians from being an essentially class conflict into its representation as "antitechnology=antiprogress". The workshop will show how the Luddites are a part of English revolutionary culture and history & worth celebrating. The workshop will also look at the contemporary relevance of technology today in an age where intellectual property and new technology arrangements can be used against working class interests. Plus, An ENOCH HAMMER - the special method of the framebreakers for negotiating with market forces! Part of the Occupy London protest.
FREE, 4.00 p.m., St Paul's Cathedral, London. 

Friday, 4th November 2011:
Luddites’ 200th Anniversary/Housmans Peace Diary launch
On the exact 200th anniversary of the first Luddite attack at Bulwell near Nottingham, (‘Mischief Night’ in the North of England), we will be screening two films. The first is a drama-documentary about the Yorkshire Luddites in 1812 that shows that the Luddites were not mindless vandals and opponents of progress as scientists have portrayed them – they broke only machines they thought ‘Hurtful to Commonality’ ie. to the common good.The second film, ‘New Technology: Whose Progress?’ is a documentary about industrial automation and workers’ responses in the 1980s, featuring Tony Benn and Mike Cooley of the Lucas Aerospace Shop Stewards. The film is very relevant in the current austerity climate, in which technology is being used to cut the jobs of public sector workers, such as librarians.We will also be launching the 2012 Housmans Peace Diary which contains a special feature on the Luddites and current technology issues such as GM food, nuclear power, drones, reproductive technology, nanotechnology and ‘geoengineering’.
FREE (Donations welcomed) 7.00 p.m. London Action Resource Centre (LARC), 62 Fieldgate Street, London, E1 1ES
Organised by: Luddites200 Organising Forum. facebook event

Luddites 200th Celebration
On the exact 200th anniversary of the first Luddite attack at Bulwell near Nottingham, (‘Mischief Night' in the North of England), the Luddites200 group is launching its celebrations. Chris Weir, local Historian and Archivist (Notts Archives), will tell the story of the 1811-12 uprisings and talk about what the Luddites were fighting for based on his book 'As Poor as a Stockinger: Framework Knitting & The Luddites in Nottinghamshire'. A representative from the Luddites200 Organising Forum will talk about technology issues in the 21st century including the use of technology to cut jobs as part of the public sector cuts and issues like GM food, nuclear power and surveillance.The discussions will be followed by a social event.
FREE (Donations welcomed) 7.00 p.m. SUMAC Centre, 245 Gladstone Street, Nottingham, NG7 6HX facebook event

Sunday 6th November 2011:
'Were the Luddites Right?' BBC Radio 3 Free Thinking Festival
Two hundred years ago this November, artisans in the North of England started protesting against new machines that were destroying their way of life. Inspired by the mythic King Ludd, the Luddites have been condemned by history as standing on the wrong side of progress – but their legacy persists. So what did they want and what does it mean to be a Luddite in today’s digital age? Historians Kathryn Hughes and Katrina Navickas, technology analyst Bill Thompson and writer Andrew Simms debate the rights and wrongs of Luddism. Presented by Rana Mitter.
1.00pm – 2.00pm, Northern Rock Foundation Hall
Free of charge: to book, call The Sage Gateshead on 0191 443 4661 or visit www.thesagegateshead.org


Sunday 13th November 2011:
'Luddite Bicentenary in Lyon' - Pieces et Mains d'Oeuvre
On the occasion of the 200th anniversary of the English workers' revolt against the machine we are holding a debate with Pieces et Mains d'Oeuvre. 1744: Fifteen thousand workers take to the streets in Lyon. A week of riots. The object of their protest: the mechanisation of silk workshops and rationalisation of working practices. 1811: As the industrial revolution takes hold and completely changes England and its social fabric, the destruction of machines as well as fires and riots increase in factories. Crafts people refuse to mourn their skills and knowledge and to migrate to the towns. They declare war on and destroy machines which are "hurtful to commonality" . This is the birth of the Luddite movement. Now, 200 years later, do we not have even more reason to revolt against modernity? And to doubt the benefits of science, of progress and of the industrial system? Artificial foods, the nonsense of computerised and automated work, the destruction of our environment including long lasting pollution of water, air and land, the illnesses of civilisation, the multiplication of cancers, the manipulation of living things whether vegetable, animal or human, heavy and widespread policing, a ubiquitous surveillance society watching our every move. 3 p.m. discussion about computers in schools, 4 p.m. debate with PIÈCES & MAIN D'OEUVRE about the society of stress.
FREEL'autre Côté du Pont, 25 Cours Gambetta, Lyon, France. (map)

Thursday 24th November 2011:
Luddites200 Benefit Gig, featuring:

BOFF WHALLEY & PHIL MOODY (CHUMBAWAMBA)
THEO SIMON (SEIZE THE DAY)
GARY KAYE
THREE SHEETS T'WIND
RAPHAEL ATTAR VARIETY HOUR
DAN AUDIO
O'HOOLEY & TIDOW
DOCTERRE
Proceeds of the benefit gig will be used to organise a cultural/ideas festival in April 2012, a gathering of technology politics activists in July 2012 and to produce publications and videos.
7.00 p.m., TJ's Woodhouse Social Club, 121 Woodhouse Street, Leeds, LS6 2JH facebook event
Tickets £6 on the door (£4 concessions). Book online in advance for £5 at http://luddites200blog.org.uk/leeds-event-ticketing or email luddites200@yahoo.co.uk

Saturday 26th November 2011:
‘Celebrating the 200th Anniversary of the Luddite Uprisings: the Politics of Technology Then and Now’ - Leeds Summat
A workshop facilitated by the Luddites 200 Organising Forum. More Details TBA.

Sunday 27th November 2011:
Mr Lud's Song: Rage Against the Machine 1811-1813 at Raise Your Banners
On the 200-year anniversary of the Luddites machine-wrecking campaign, Theo Simon from Seize The Day explores the Ludds through their songs and communiques, followed by an open discussion of what Luddism means for us today. Theo's article 'Mr Ludd's Song' is here. In other words, a talk with songs, followed by an open discussion.
11am-12.30pm Green Room

Thursday 1st December 2011:
CANCELLED - The True Story of the Luddites - Theo Simon
To celebrate the 200th anniversary of the Luddite uprisings, the Ilder Academy gas invited musician and activist Theo Simon to give an instructive talk on this much-misunderstood, much-maligned and much caricatured workers’ revolt. Probably the most frequently arrested musician in Britain, Theo Simon is an environmental activist and radical singer/songwriter with frontline folk band Seize The Day. His twenty years experience as a modern day “luddite” have led him to explore the heritage of Ned Ludd’s original machine-breaking army through their music and writings.Now, in the Luddite rebellion’s bi-centenary year, he’ll be leading a fearless enquiry into who they were, the songs they sung, and whether we should now seek, like them, “to put down all machinary hurtful to the commonality”.Theo’s recent piece “Mr Lud’s Song” is published in The Land Magazine.
6.30pm for 7pm, The Idler Academy, 81 Westbourne Park Road, London W2 5QH. Tel: 0207 221 5908. THIS EVENT WAS CANCELLED & WILL BE RESCHEDULED IN 2012.

Saturday 3rd December:
The Luddite Bicentenary, 1812-2012 - Manchester & Salford Anarchist Bookfair
In 1811-12 Artisan cloth workers (Luddites) in the Midlands and the North rose up against factory owners who were imposing new machines and putting them out of work. The Luddites only broke machines that were 'hurtful to commonality'. What can the Luddites teach us about how to successfully resist anti-democratic technology practices, such as GM crops and creating unemployment, today? Facilitated by the Luddites200 Organising Forum
FREE: People's History Museum, Manchester, Workshop Space 1, 1.30 p.m.

Wednesday 14th December 2011:
Radical History Network of North East London - The Luddites Remembered
It is 200 years since clothing workers smashed up the machinery that was destroying their jobs. Many regard modern technology as similarly destructive, but a better way is needed to deal with it this time round . We examine the prospects. Time and venue TBA 

Friday 6th January 2012:

James Woolley: the diary of a framework knitter - Peter Hammond
West Bridgford & District Local History Society, West Bridgford Community Hall, Church Drive, 7.30p.m.

Wednesday 15th February 2012:

Frameworker Knitters of the East Midlands - Dr Wendy Freer
Eastwood Historical Society, Beauvale Methodist Church, Dovecote Road, Newthorpe, Nottingham, 7.30p.m.

Friday 17th February 2012:

Have You Seen Ned? - LBT Youth Theatre
Seek out the elusive Ned Ludd with the brilliant LBT Youth Theatre, who have left no stone unturned in their search through the mists of time and present this myth-smashing performance, devised alongside professional theatre makers over half term.
£2: Lawrence Batley Theatre, Queen's Square, Queen's Street, Huddersfield, HD1 2SP. 3 p.m. & 4.30 p.m.

Tuesday 21st February 2012:

"Were the Luddites right after all?" - Free University of Slawit
The pub philosophy and politics discussion group look at the Luddites, with socialist historian, Alan Brooke.
FREE: The Commercial, 1 Carr Lane, Slaithwaite, Huddersfield, HD7 5AN, 8.00 p.m.

Calderdale and the Yorkshire Luddites - Dr John Hargreaves
A talk for the Halifax Antiquarian Society
7.30 p.m. Central Library, Northgate, Halifax, HX1 1UN, Tel: 01422 392630.

Saturday 31st March 2012:

Greater Manchester Radical History Group - launch meeting
A meeting to found a local radical history group and to look to publish a publication on the Luddite bicentenary. Speakers include: Chris Draper on the practicalities & purpose of radical publishing; Richard Holland on 'Luddites vs Peterloo'; Roger Ball on the history, experiences and endeavours of the Bristol Radical History Group.
FREE: Town Hall Tavern, Tib Lane, off Cross Street, Manchester, M2 4JA. 11.00 a.m.

Thursday 12th April 2012:

'Luddite Locations two centuries on' - Kirklees Countryside Volunteers
Kirklees Countryside Volunteers are offering a public walk in the Spen Valley named, 'Luddite locations two centuries on'. The 5-mile walk will visit locations involved in the planning and execution of the attack on Cartwright's Mill, on its bicentenary, and subsequent retribution.
Meet Nigel at the junction of Bradford Rd (A638) and Primrose Lane (near Princess Mary Stadium), Rawfolds, Cleckheaton, WF15 6LW (GR SE 198 246) - park on the roadside. 1.00 p.m.

Friday 13th April 2012:

'The Bolton Rising' by Neil Duffield
The year is 1812, the place is Bolton, and the fuse is lit. In a time of change, when new technology is reshaping the land and transforming people's lives, a crowd of desperate and impoverished Boltonians burn Westhoughton Mill to the ground. This is their story. A true tale of spies, planned insurrections, secret meetings, conspiracies, betrayals, and oaths sworn on pain of death. An informal reading of a shortened version of Neil Duffield's play by Bolton Socialist Club members.
FREE: Bolton Socialist Club, Wood Street, Bolton, BL1 1DY. 8.00 p.m.

Saturday 14th April 2012:

Unveiling of Luddite commemorative sculpture
Spen Valley Civic Society have commissioned a sculpture commemorating the Luddites which will be situated in Liversedge. The statue will be unveiled in a ceremony starting at 11.30 a.m.

Remembering the Luddite Martyrs at the 'Luddite Cenotaph'
Huddersfield Luddites 200, in conjunction with the Luddites 200 Organising Forum and Luddite Bicentenary, wish to commemorate the Luddite Martyrs who gave their lives 200 years ago so that working-class people could envisage a different version of 'progress' than that imposed by the government and manufacturers and upheld by their inheritors ever since.

200 years after the failed Luddite attack on Rawfolds Mill, we invite admirers of the Luddites and those who carry their torch today to gather at the site of the new memorial to them in Liversedge. Here's a rough agenda:

-A brief account of the Rawfolds attack
-Roll call of the dead and executed
-Wreath/April flowers, laying
-Twisting-in: we'll invite you to take the Luddite 'oath of engagement'
-Sing 'the Cropper Lads'
-Adjourn to the Shears and/or chippy opposite.

We plan to meet at the nearby Shears public house, but you can meet us at the monument, which is at the junction of Knowler Hill and Halifax Road (A649) in Liversedge.
**Please note, our commemoration is NOT part of the official unveiling of the new monument to the Spen Valley Luddites, and will follow AFTER any official proceedings. Therefore, timings will be approximate**
FREE Liversedge Sparrow Park (junction of Knowler Hill & Halifax Road), Liversedge. Starting at approximately 12.30 p.m. facebook event

The Luddite attack on Rawfolds/Shirley & The Luddites
Two public talks, one about the infamous Luddite attack, the other about Charlotte Brontë's novel set in the West Riding during the Luddite period. The venue was the school attended by the Brontë sisters.
£6.00 (including refreshments): tickets from Imelda Marsden on 01924 519370 or Nicki on 01924 490833. Holly Bank School, Roe Head, Far Common Road, Mirfield, WF14 0DQ. 2.15 p.m.

Saturday 14th April 2012 (continuing to October):

Can You Keep A Secret? The Rise & Fall of the Yorkshire Luddites - Mikron Theatre Company
Riots in our city streets, the worst economic crisis for decades, a long war fought abroad with no sign of progress.Sound familiar? Welcome to England 1812. Whilst the country’s elite enjoy lavish balls and chattering salons, textile mill workers fight for their livelihoods by smashing up the machinery designed to replace them. Luddism - a fight for rights or fear of progress? Direct action or mindless vandalism?In the back room of a Yorkshire pub, a young lad is ‘twisted in’. He takes the oath of secrecy and joins the Luddites. But why won’t he give his real name, calling himself instead after the movement’s mythical founder, Ned Ludd? What is he hiding? And who was Ned Ludd anyway?In the bicentennial year of the Luddite risings, which took place around Marsden West Yorkshire, who better to illuminate their story than fellow Marsdeners, Mikron – with their unique blend of humour, history and harmonic arrangements! Full details of prices, venues & times can be viewed here
The tour visits the following locations:
Saturday 14th April - Oakwell Hay Barn, Birstall
Sunday 15th April - Working Class Movement Library, Salford
Wednesday 18th April - The Handmade Bakery, Slaithwaite
Thursday 19th April - The Swan Inn, Dobcross
Friday 20th April - Hinchliffes, Netherton, Huddersfield
Saturday 21st April - Georgian Theatre Royal, Richmond, North Yorkshire
Wednesday 23rd May - Victoria Hotel, Beeston, Nottinghamshire
Friday 1st June - Clock Warehouse, Shardlow, Derbyshire
Sunday 3rd June - Badsey's Cafe Bistro, Hillmorton, Warwickshire
Thursday 7th June - The Canal Museum, Stoke Bruerne, South Northamptonshire
Saturday 9th June - The Well at Willen, Willen, Buckinghamshire
Thursday 14th June - The Grand Junction Arms, Tring, Hertfordshire
Monday 18th June - The Pirate Castle, London, NW1
Thursday 21st June - London Canal Museum, N1
Saturday 23rd June - Fleet Football Club, Hampshire
Wednesday 27th June - The Bounty, Bourne End, Buckinghamshire
Friday 29th June - HPCR at the Rowbarge, Woolhampton, Berkshire
Monday 2nd July - The St George & Dragon, Wargrave, Berkshire
Wednesday 4th July - Goring Lock, Goring, Berkshire
Friday 6th July - The Trout Inn, Lechlade on Thames, Gloucestershire
Tuesday 17th July - The Plough Inn, Long Wittenham, Oxfordshire
Thursday 19th July - The Queens Head, Eynsham, Oxfordshire
Sunday 22nd July - The Jolly Boatman, Kidlington, Oxfordshire
Wednesday 25th July - The Rock of Gibraltar, Woodstock, Oxfordshire
Saturday 28th July - The Mill Arts Centre, Banbury, Oxfordshire
Thursday 2nd August - Oxford Science Park, Oxford, Oxfordshire
Sunday 5th August - The Hatton Arms, Warwick, Warwickshire
Thursday 16th August - The Weighbridge, Alvechurch, Worcestershire
Sunday 19th August - The Bridge Inn, Tiberton, Worcestershire
Wednesday 22nd August - Olde Black Bear, Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire
Friday 24th August - Randwick Village Hall, Gloucestershire
Saturday 25th August - The Buzz Cafe, Stratford Upon Avon, Warwickshire
Tuesday 28th August - Bishampton Village Hall, Worcestershire
Wednesday 29th August - Haw Bridge Inn, Tirley, Gloucestershire
Saturday 1st September - Wharf House, Cropredy, Oxfordshire
Wednesday 5th September - Stourport Civic Centre, Stourport, Worcestershire
Sunday 9th September - Coton Mill, Gnosall, Staffordshire
Friday 21st September - Keys Restaurant, Huddersfield, West Yorkshire
Monday 1st October - Leyland Civic Centre, Leyland, Lancashire
Friday 5th October - Old Malton War Memorial Hall, Old Malton, North Yorkshire
Saturday 6th October - The Met, Bury, Lancashire (1.30 p.m.)
Saturday 6th October - Hepworth Village Hall, Hepworth, West Yorkshire (7.30 p.m.)
Tuesday 9th October - The Leggers Inn, Dewsbury, West Yorkshire
Wednesday 10th October - Golcar Lily, Golcar, West Yorkshire
Thursday 11th October - St Peter & Pauls Church, Salford, Lancashire
Saturday 13th October - Square Chapel Centre for Arts, Halifax, West Yorkshire
Saturday 20th October - Marsden Mechanics Hall, Marsden, West Yorkshire
Sunday 21st October - Royal Northern College of Music, Manchester, Lancashire
Tuesday 23rd October - The Stubbing Wharf, Hebden Bridge
Wednesday 24th October - Meltham Sports & Community Centre, Meltham, West Yorkshire
Thursday 25th October - Temujin, Milnsbridge, West Yorkshire

Saturday 21st April 2012:

Opening of 'The Burning of Westhoughton Mill' Exhibition - Westhoughton Local History Group
The mayor of Westhoughton, Councillor Harry Bowling will open an exhibition on the first floor of Westhoughton Library. The exhibition has been mounted after extensive research by Garth Ratcliffe and Pam Clarke locally and also at the National Archives in Kew. Research has also been undertaken in Australia into the fate of those who were deported following their trial at Lancaster. This is a fascinating story of events which shaped the future of Westhoughton for the rest of the 19th century and beyond.
FREE. Westhoughton Library, Library Street, Westhoughton, Lancashire, BL5 3AT 10.00 a.m.

Sunday 22nd April 2012:

Commemoration of Westhoughton Luddites - Westhoughton Local History Group
An evening programme of events to mark the 200th anniversary of the loom-breaking and firing of Westhoughton Mill will take place at the former Mill site on the corner of Mill Street and Park Road. The site is diagonally opposite the White Lion Inn on Market Street. At 6:15pm, Julie Hilling MP will unveil a plaque close to the site. At 6:30, an open air event will be staged on the actual site, opposite the White Lion. The Houghton Weavers and Wingates Band will open the proceedings before there will be a re-enactment of the events leading up to the Burning of the Mill. The short play will support the exhibition referred to above in showing how the pioneering steam driven mill revolutionised the cotton industry, whilst at the same time causing much civil unrest among families whose cottage based industry had been ruined. As the unrest grows, the Luddites will move forward to an unguarded replica of the Mill and set it alight. The evening will close with a firework display which will be clearly visible from the Mill site.
FREE. Corner of Mill Street and Park Road, Westhoughton, Lancashire. From 6.15 p.m.

Tuesday 24th April 2012:

The Burning of the Westhoughton Mill - by One Accord
On 24th April 1812, Luddites burned down the Mill belonging to Wray & Duncroff at Westhoughton in Lancashire. In 1882, the Bolton Weekly Journal published a long poem by John Clough that told the story of the burning of the mill. In the previous year the same paper had published court reports from the time of the trials. The piece put together by One Accord uses this poem and splits it up into readings and songs using local folk and hymn tunes, and also uses excerpts from the trial reports as published in the Bolton Weekly Journal.
FREE. Westhoughton Library, Library Street, Westhoughton, Lancashire, BL5 3AT 6.00 p.m.

Saturday 28th April 2012:

Huddersfield Luddites 200 Festival
A one-day festival in Huddersfield aiming to bring together different groups who have developed plays, music, poetry, etc related to the Luddites’ 200th anniversary, and to combine that with discussions around issues related to technology today. The festival will include: theatre, poetry, music, art, storytelling, film, exhibitions including materials developed by local schools, talks, workshops and political debates. There will be hands on/demonstrations of old/alternative technology from spinning/weaving to blacksmithing and micropower. There will be an evening gig & the festival will include childrens’ activities & stalls. Organised by local people in conjunction with the Luddites 200 Organising Forum. Email huddersfieldluddites200@gmail.com for more info. Facebook page. Facebook event. Twitter.
For full details & programme, see our dedicated page here

Last Rites of the Luddites - Slubbing Billys & Chris Carter
A 15 minute explosion of drama, performed by a 10 strong side of Morris Dancers, the Slubbing Billys.
Cost TBA. Colne Valley Museum, Cliffe Ash, Huddersfield, HD7 4PY, 01484 659 762 3.30 p.m.

Among Those Dark Satanic Mills - The Hammer & Shears Company
Told in words, music, pictures and songs, the Hammer and Shears Company vividly bring the Life and Times of the Luddites in the West Riding of Yorkshire to life between 1811 – 1813. 
£5 in advance from Geoff & Mary Twentyman on 01274 673274. Aldersgate Methodist Church, Common Road, Low Moor, Bradford, BD12 0TW. 7.00 p.m.

Friday 11th May 2012:

The Luddites & The Pennines - a lecture by Katrina Navickas
The University of Huddersfield invite you to find out about The Luddites & a Sense of Place in the Pennines with Dr Navickas, a specialist in the study of popular movements in the North of England. This enlightening evening  will be followed by a lively exchange in the bar and features traditional Luddite songs performed by Jim Potter and Alma Wright. Facilitated by the University of Huddersfield & funded by a grant from the Lipman-Miliband Trust.
FREE. Huddersfield Town Hall. 7.00 p.m.

Saturday 12th May 2012:

Enoch's Hammer: the Luddites and other early 19th century protest movements
The University of Huddersfield will host a day seminar on Luddism and other early nineteenth century protest movements on 12 May 2012. Confirmed speakers include: Malcolm Chase, Mike Sanders, Katrina Navickas, John Hargreaves, Kevin Binfield, Matt Roberts, Alan Brooke. facebook event Booking and registration here

Sunday 13th May 2012:

Among Those Dark Satanic Mills - The Hammer & Shears Company
Told in words, music, pictures and songs, the Hammer and Shears Company vividly bring the Life and Times of the Luddites in the West Riding of Yorkshire to life between 1811 – 1813. 
£5 in advance from John and Marina Hayward – 01924 485573. Roberttown Community Centre Church Road, Roberttown, Liversedge, WF15 7LS. 2.15 p.m.

Wednesday 23rd May 2012:

James Woolley: the diary of a framework knitter - Peter Hammond
Southwell & District Local History Society, The Old Courthouse, The Burgage, 7.30 p.m.

17th - 24th June 2012:

'Writing Frame' by Tim Shore
Part of the Holmfirth Arts Festival, 'Writing Frame' is an installation that consists of a series of linked punched A1 cards that cascade off a simple wooden frame. Letters cut into the paper form a text that appears to run on, which reads:"Enoch hath made them and Enoch shall break them".This was the rallying cry of the Luddites of West Yorkshire who destroyed the new shearing frames, made by Enoch and James Taylor of Marsden, with iron sledgehammers - the ‘terrible Enochs’ made by the same Enoch Taylor.The punched paper, and the frame it is attached to, reference the changes wrought by the automation and mechanisation of the weaving process, and in particular the coded instructions of the Jacquard loom. Much of what is known about the Luddites was handed down through oral histories and shared memories that were transcribed and recorded a long time after the events of 1812. In running the words together, Writing Frame suggests how language and meaning (and history) can be lost or difficult to ‘read’. Tim Shore has also designed a pump label for one of the two ales brewed especially for the festival, viz 'Twisted in'.
FREE: (Window View) The Old Print Shop, 19 Huddersfield Road, Holmfirth, HD9 2JR. Facebook event.

Monday 25th June 2012 (continues to 28th July):

Luddites in Kirklees - Lawrence Batley Theatre
Alongside a newly curated exhibition at the Tolson Museum, the Lawrence Batley Theatre is delighted to host this exhibition of unique artefacts from the events of the Luddites, including the infamous Enoch’s hammer and William Horsfall’s actual sword! Visit the theatre during opening times and step back in time 200 years.
FREE. Lawrence Batley Theatre, Queen's Square, Queen's Street, Huddersfield, HD1 2SP.

Thursday 28th June 2012 (continuing to 30th June):

RE:VOLT - Lawrence Batley Theatre
What happens when the fight for your livelihood becomes a fight for your life? When passions run high, the line between right and wrong is easily blurred. This newly commissioned play explores the personal turmoil faced by those involved in protest, as the stories of the Luddites resonate through time to the present day, forcing questions to be asked and action to be taken. Featuring a large community cast and full professional creative team, Re:volt is woven through with historical detail and contemporary events. Re:volt harnesses the passions of the people to bring you a stage show like no other. But just what, or who will be dealt the final hammer blow? This is a community production, email luddites@thelbt.org to become involved.
£10/£8 Lawrence Batley Theatre, Queen's Square, Queen's Street, Huddersfield, HD1 2SP. 7.30 p.m. (Saturday Matinee 2.15 p.m.)

Tuesday 3rd July 2012:

‘Liberty or Death: Radicals, Republicans and Luddites 1793 – 1823’ - Alan Brooke
A talk by radical historian, Alan Brooke, in partnership with Rickaro Books of Horbury and Huddersfield Local History Society.
FREE:  No booking required. Horbury Library, Westfield road, Horbury WF4 6HP. For further information contact Rickaro Books on 01924 278811 or Horbury Library on 01924 303060. 7.30 p.m.

Saturday 7th July 2012:

Among Those Dark Satanic Mills - The Hammer & Shears Company
Told in words, music, pictures and songs, the Hammer and Shears Company vividly bring the Life and Times of the Luddites in the West Riding of Yorkshire to life between 1811 – 1813. Part of Cleckheaton Folk Festival.
£4 on the door. The George Mead Hall, Cleckheaton. 1.00 p.m.

Thursday 2nd - Sunday 5th August:

The Luddite Legacy - Theo Simon
On the 200 year anniversary of Ned Ludd’s uprising, Theo explores the Luddites through their songs, and explains how their revolutionary experience could help us in our struggles for social and ecological justice today. With discussion of current resistance to nuclear and GM technocracy. Part of the Green Gathering 2012.  
This is a talk at a ticketed event. Chepstow Racecourse, Chepstow, Monmouthshire, NP16 6BE. Precise time and date of talk not published.

Saturday 11th August 2012:

Commemoration of the 1817 Pentrich Rising
It's 195 years since the reputed former Luddite Jeremiah Brandreth led a failed rising in Derbyshire. This afternoon and evening commemoration includes a guided walk at 3.00p.m., taking in some of the historic sites, and is sponsored by Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire Labour History Society and the Nottingham Clarion Choir. Contact doradus@tiscali.co.uk or 07951 536921 for more info.
Ashes field, Park Lane, between Pentrich and South Wingfield, Alfreton, DE55 7LR.

Saturday 8th September 2012:

‘A Riotous Yell’ at Shibden Hall in Halifax.
Come and experience life 200 years ago at the turbulent time of the Luddite Uprising. Visit the Crispin Inn where plots were hatched and meet the people who made history on our doorstep. Something to intrigue and entertain the whole family! Dare you sign the oath?
FREE: Shibden Hall, Lister’s Road, Halifax, HX3 6XG. 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. Admission Free. Facebook event

Among Those Dark Satanic Mills - The Hammer & Shears Company
Told in words, music, pictures and songs, the Hammer and Shears Company vividly bring the Life and Times of the Luddites in the West Riding of Yorkshire to life between 1811 – 1813. Excerpts only - part of  Honley Heritage Weekend (there is also an exhibition between 1-4 p.m.)
FREE. Honley Parish Church, Honley, HD9 6AH. 2.00 p.m.

Monday 10th September 2012:

The Luddites, a talk by John Beckett for Priories Historical Society
Were the luddites haters of technology or normal people pushed to the edge by poverty and the Napoleonic wars? The University of Nottingham's John Beckett gives an insight into the peoples uprising that started in Nottinghamshire in 1811.
FREE: Oldcotes Village Hall, Maltby Road (A634), Oldcotes, Worksop, Notts, 7.30 p.m. facebook event

Saturday 22nd September 2012:

Rethinking Luddism in Nottinghamshire - Dr. Matthew Roberts
This talk revisits the Luddism of the Nottinghamshire framework knitters. As is well known, the epicentre(s) of Luddism was not in Nottingham itself but in the surrounding villages. Many of these villages were still essentially rural communities. The Luddism of the villages was part of a repertoire of protest acts (arson, poaching, even robbery and attacks on rural property), the origins of which were to be found in the traditions and customs of the English rural community. The Luddites were not semi-professional criminals divorced from their wider community. Rather, Luddite cells grow organically from kinship, neighbourhood and trade connections. The talk will also challenge the view that Luddism in Nottinghamshire was constitutional and moderate.
FREE: Sparrow's Nest, St Ann's, Notttingham (contact for directions), 2.00 p.m.

Thursday 27th September 2012:

Ruddington Framework-knitters Museum AGM
Featuring a lecture on the Luddites by Professor John Becket.
Chapel Street, Ruddington, Nottinghamshire, NG11 6HE. 7.00 p.m.

Sunday 14th October 2012:

Among Those Dark Satanic Mills - The Hammer & Shears Company
Told in words, music, pictures and songs, the Hammer and Shears Company vividly bring the Life and Times of the Luddites in the West Riding of Yorkshire to life between 1811 – 1813. 
Ticket details TBA. Hebden Bridge Town Hall, Saint George's Street, Hebden Bridge, HX7 7BY. 3.00 p.m.

Wednesday 17th October 2012:

Workshop on the Luddites, automation and austerity - Luddites200
A key part of capitalism and austerity is the continual imposition of new
technologies that eliminate jobs, deskill workers and discipline them through
surveillance.  Technology is not ‘neutral’, it is developed by capital and always
primarily serves its interests.  We are told that this is progress. Currently:

        * Digital technologies are replacing ever-increasing numbers of jobs with robots,
3D printing machines, ‘smart software’ etc. This trend is partly driven by the
current recession and austerity, which push employers to reduce wage bills eg, by
replacing librarians with automatic check-in machines.

        * Other new technologies, such as nanotechnology, raise significant health and
safety issues for workers.

        * The world is facing multiple resource shortages and the threat of climate change,
which demands a transition to a sustainable society, but scientists and
corporations are aiming to continue with business as usual by deploying dangerous
technofixes, such as ‘geoengineering’ and synthetic biology.  What we really need
is democratic control of technologies to make the transition.

200 years ago, in 1812, groups of textile workers known as Luddites staged an
uprising against machinery that was eliminating their jobs, skills and destroying
their communities. Although the Luddites have often been portrayed as being against
technology and progress, in fact they broke only machines they thought were ‘hurtful
to Commonality’ ie. to the common good, and the common people.
FREE: Cuts Café, 1 Stamford St, London SE1 9NT 7.30 p.m.

Saturday 27th October 2012:

The politics of technology today: building resistance - Luddites200/Corporate Watch
For the last 250 years technology has been a key driving force in the capitalist economy, yet radical movements rarely pay it sufficient attention. Technology has its own ideology and system of domination, technocracy, which influences capitalist, social and economic relations just as much as it is influenced by them. Technocracy’s promise of progress through technology is also critical in maintaining hope that the system can solve its own problems. Luddism is not an anti-technology movement, but rather an anti-technocracy movement that is almost unique in opposing both technocracy and capitalism. The aim of the workshop will be to encourage critical thinking about the role of technology in our lives and campaigns, in preparation for the Luddites200 gathering on the politics of technology in Spring 2013. It will discuss geoengineering and synthetic biology as current threats and possibilities for action. Part of the London Anarchist Bookfair Luddites200 will also have stall all day at the Bookfair
FREE: Room 3.20, Queen Mary University of London, Mile End Road, E1 4NS 5.00 p.m.

Friday 16th/Saturday 17th November 2012:

Distant Threads - by Invisible Flock
A secret location. Hidden technology. Come and play with Invisible Flock along a journey exploring our relationship to technology both from the Luddites to today. Using hand held devices and interactive installation explore a hidden tactile exploration of the Luddite uprising. Using hand held devices and interactive installation, DISTANT THREADS is a tactile exploration of stories that connect the past to the present. As an audience member you will become co-creator of a unique experience as you walk through installations whose outcomes are entirely created by you. Combining live performance, games and technology, Invisible Flock have created a specialised interactive space specially adapted to Dewsbury Mills. Invisible Flock are a collective based in Leeds. Their work utilizes installation, games, live performance and hidden technologies. They are interested in the subversion of social space and creating work for unusual locations. Central to all their work is the desire to place the audiences as empowered co-creators of the experience, whether through installations that are entirely user generated or through theatrical game play that allows for their choices to really affect the outcomes of the piece in a meaningful way. They are interested in new ways for audiences to participate, things that surprise and excite and experiences that bring people together.
£8/£6 (concessions): Dewsbury Mills, Thornhill Road Dewsbury West Yorkshire WF12 9QE Friday 4.00 p.m. / Saturday 2.00 p.m. & 4.00 p.m. tickets in advance via Lawrence Batley Theatre

Sunday 18th November 2012:

Celebrate the Luddites 200th anniversary - various  
2012 is the 200th anniversary of the Luddites’ uprisings against machinery that was destroying weavers’ livelihoods. Were the Luddites mindless hooligans opposed to progress, or, as EP Thompson suggests, trades unionists fighting for their jobs in desperate conditions? Why were more women so important in the Lancashire and Cheshire riots? What is their legacy for today? Come and enjoy our cultural celebration and find out more about this fascinating episode of working class history. Music will be performed by One Accord; a four piece group that performs music and songs which draw on a number of influences including Traditional Music, Church Music and Variety Theatre. All four members sing and play various instruments: John Green – recorders, English concertina and vocals; Linda Green – piano, accordion and vocals; Alison Whitaker – recorders and vocals; Peter Bearon – melodeons, duet concertina and vocals. Exhibitions and artwork will be displayed by Westhoughton Local History Group and Kevin Threlfall Talks will be given by: Richard Holland, editor of the Luddites Bicentenary blog, which has been recording the events of the Luddite uprising day by day; Garth Ratcliffe, a retired lecturer from Manchester Metropolitan University who joined the Westhoughton Local History Group about six years ago. Garth has played a leading part in delivering exhibitions about the centenary of the Pretoria Pit disaster in 2010 and the bicentenary of the Burning of Westhoughton Mill by Luddites in 1812 Organised by the People’ s History Museum and Luddites200 – a network of historians, scientists, artists and activists, which has been organising events to celebrate the Luddites’ 200th anniversary. Donations to the museum and to Luddites200 gratefully received
FREE: People's History Museum, Left Bank, Spinningfields, Manchester, M3 3ER. 2.00 - 5.00 p.m. Booking advised, please contact 0161 838 9190 or info@phm.org.uk facebook event

Saturday 24th November 2012:

'Reading History From Below' (Film/Discussion/Book Launch) - All Knees & Elbows
The book 'All Knees and Elbows of Susceptibility and Refusal: Reading History From Below' began as a discussion between two friends, Anthony Iles and Tom Roberts, about the politics of writing history. Neither are trained historians. They have assembled a critical and necessarily partial picture of the practice of ‘history from below’: historiographical tendencies which sought to uncover the agency of ‘ordinary people’ in challenging capitalism and developing different forms of social organisation. All Knees and Elbows surveys the work of a number of British and international left historians and groups, including Silvia Federici, History Workshop, Eric Hobsbawm, C.L.R James, Peter Linebaugh, Sheila Rowbotham, Jacques Rancière and E.P. Thompson. “The completed study is not intended to be comprehensive. We’ve veered towards the subjects, areas and materials which interest us. These include questions of sources and their uses, working class education and self-education, welfare and the wage, language, historical authenticity and literary inventiveness, and contemporary political instrumentalisations of radical history. The book attests to the importance of reading history critically against the present.” Film Screening & Introduction – 4.00pm The Luddites (53 mins) is a film directed by Richard Broad for Thames TV in 1988 as if it were a contemporary documentary. The Luddites were a social movement of textile artisans from around Northern England and the Midlands, who banded together in 1812 in secret societies and destroyed the machines which were putting them out of work. Discussion – 5.30-6.30pm A discussion of The Luddites led by authors Anthony Iles and Tom Roberts informed by some of the All Knees and Elbows themes, including: The definition and redefinition of the working class in History from Below • Critical re-examination of ruptures in the social relation • Techniques developed within struggles to control and convey their own history • Struggles over the marketisation of research • Critical struggles over authenticity • The market for working class memoirs and hardship porn • Determinism and/ or the potential for action. Book launch – 7.00pm Authors Anthony Iles and Tom Roberts will give a short introduction to their new book All Knees and Elbows of Susceptibility and Refusal: Reading History From Below critically appraising tendencies and debates in history from below. A sample chapter from the book is available here.
FREE: Transmission Gallery, 28 King Street, Glasgow, G1 5QP. Refreshments provided. 4.00 p.m.

Saturday 19th January 2013:

Commemoration of the Yorkshire Luddite Martyrs - York's Alternative History
York Alternative History have organised a series of events to commemorate the Show Trial at York Castle of 66 alleged West Riding Luddites in January 1813 and the subsequent execution by hanging of 17 of their number.

13.00-15.00 p.m.: Talks at The Guildhall, St Helen’s Square, York
Katrina Navickas (University of Hertfordshire): Luddites in the landscape: defending custom, community, and common law
Malcolm Chase (University of Leeds): Political prisoners at York Castle: a broader perspective
Alan Brooke (Huddersfield Local History Society): The legacy of Luddism

This is a major opportunity to hear three great speakers give a different view than the idea that Luddism was some sort of backward-looking movement, violently opposed to technological progress. The Luddite movement will be set in its wider historical context as part of the quest of working people for freedom and justice. There will be a chance for questions and discussion and a bookstall by the Huddersfield Local History Society. Entry is free but there will be a collection to cover the costs of the room and speakers.

15.45-16.30 p.m.: Assembly and procession to the site of the executions at York Castle
After the meeting we will gather outside in St Helen’s Square before processing to York Castle. We will be carrying candles and placards with the names of those executed and wearing white armbands in their memory. When we reach the site of the execution at York Castle there will be a short commemorative event and a memorial will be left at the site. Everyone welcome.

19.30-23.00 p.m.: The Luddite Wake at The Black Swan, Peaseholme Green, York
In the evening there will be an evening of radical songs, words and music in the upstairs room of a local pub to celebrate the Luddites and the First Birthday of York Alternative History. Entry is free but there will be a collection and a raffle to cover expenses. This event
is now fully booked.

A facebook event for the day can be found here.

Monday 18th February 2013:

The Background to the Luddites in the West Riding - Alan Brooke
A talk for Baildon Local History Society by the Huddersfield historian.
£2.00 Adults/FREE Children Baildon Library, Hallcliffe, Baildon, Shipley, BD17 6ND 7.30 p.m.

Monday 18th March 2013:

Rethinking Luddism in Nottinghamshire - Dr Matthew Roberts
A talk for Lambley Historical Society: Dr. Matthew Roberts is a Senior Lecturer in Modern British History at Sheffield Hallam University. This talk revisits the Luddism of the Nottinghamshire framework knitters in the surrounding villages. By unearthing of new evidence, this talk will show that the Luddites were not semi-professional criminals but had grown from kinship, neighbourhood and trade connections. Machine breaking was part of well-established pattern of survival crime and protest which brought the knitters into conflict not only with their employers but also the local squirearchy.

£3.00 (non-members) Women's Institute Hall, Main Street, Lowdham, NG14 7AB 7.30p.m.

Saturday 23rd March 2013:

Joseph Woolley: Diary of a Framework Knitter - Peter Hammond.
This talk is part of Nottinghamshire Local History Association's Spring Meeting titled 'Stories of Ordinary Folk. It takes place alongside 3 others talks spanning the whole day and the entrance price reflects that.
£7.50 (non-members) The Village Hall, Vernon Crescent, Ravenshead, NG15 9BN 9.40 a.m. - 4.15 p.m.

Tuesday 9th April 2013:

The Luddite Disturbances of 1811-1812 - Katrina Navickas
A talk for the Historical Association (Enfield Branch)
FREE Jubilee Hall, 2 Parsonage Lane, Enfield, EN2 0AJ, 8.00 p.m.

Saturday 13th April 2013:

Fifty years of EP Thompson's The Making of the English Working Class
Edward Thompson’s The Making of the English Working Class appeared in 1963 and has become one of the most influential history texts of the twentieth century. It is still in print fifty years on, having survived challenges from Marxist, feminist and postmodern historians. This day conference celebrates Thompson’s classic, and considers its reception, its critics, and why it endures. The conference will also include displays from the Working Class Movement Library and the Labour History Archive and Study Centre at the People’s History Museum. Confirmed speakers now include the broadcaster Stuart Maconie, former trade union leader Rodney Bickerstaffe and Professor Adrian Randall from University of Birmingham. A programme for the even can be found here.
£10/£5 unwaged People’s History Museum, Manchester, 10.00 a.m. - 16.00 p.m.

Luddites and Literature - Yorkshire Philosophical Society
This day trip to West Yorkshire will visit some of the places involved with Luddite activity in 1812 and with Charlotte Bronte whose  book “Shirley” describes those troubled times. Organiser Alan Owen. More information and application forms will be sent out with the YPS newsletter in early 2013.
Further details TBA.

Saturday 20th April 2013:

David Goodway on "The Making of ‘The Making of the English Working Class" - Northern Radical History Network
This year marks 50 years since the publication of E. P. Thompson’s The Making of the English Working Class, and the book, its author and the book’s impact and legacy will be our meeting’s topic of discussion. We are delighted to be joined by David Goodway a social and cultural historian who has become increasingly known as an authority on anarchism. Between 1969 and 2005, David worked in Continuing Education at the University of Leeds, and he was Helen Cam Visiting Fellow in History at Girton College, Cambridge, for 2006-7. His publications include London Chartism, 1838-1848 (1982), Talking Anarchy (with Colin Ward) (2003) and Anarchist Seeds beneath the Snow: Left-Libertarian Thought and British Writers from William Morris to Colin Ward (2006). David will present a paper entitled The Making of ‘The Making of the English Working Class’ (further details to follow)
FREE. The Equity Centre, 1 Longlands Street, Bradford, BD1 2TP. 11.00 a.m. – 3.00 p.m.

Saturday 20th April - Sunday 12th May 2013:

Immaterial Labour Isn't Working - Auto Italia South East
Immaterial Labour Isn’t Working is a series of talks, workshops, texts and online contributions from key voices – artists, activists, technologists and writers – to examine how digital technology is changing our political selves. Everything has changed. A technological revolution and an economic crisis have combined to reshape our world. Today, we live, work and play online, and yet we are often still stuck in ways of thinking that belong to an offline world. Over 40 years information technology has transformed our working patterns. Today, our productive capabilities are harnessed in all our waking hours as the boundaries between production and consumption transform into a pixelated blur. The way we produce, disseminate and consume culture is now almost totally mediated by the online space; but more than this, there’s also an increasingly fluid relation between “creative industries” and the working practices being imposed upon other workers. The aesthetic and technical structures of online space are becoming the prism through which we visualise and conceptualise our everyday lives, yet technological developments in the workplace are being structured for the benefit of our employers rather than us workers. How does living online affect our mental health? Are we working too much? Is the boundary between work and play too porous? How does political organising happen when we never meet our colleagues? What does culture look like when the tools to make and broadcast exist on every laptop? The first project to be presented at Auto Italia’s new King’s Cross space, ILIW13 will be physically situated within this area of industrial and social transformation, occupying an uncertain landscape now claimed as site of cultural production. Immaterial Labour Isn’t Working is a project by Auto Italia South East in collaboration with Huw Lemmey. Confirmed contributors include: Alex Andrews, Hannah Black, James Bridle, Joanna Figiel & Stevphen Shukaitis (Metropolitan Factory), Mark Fisher, Alex Hern, Dougald Hine, Dave King (Luddites 200), Metahaven, Novara Media, Michael Oswell, David Rudnick, Jay Springett, Kieran Startup Alex Vasudevan, Ben Vickers, Josefine Wikström and Will Wiles with more to be announced.
Further details TBA. Unit 2, 3 York Way, King’s Cross Central, London, N1C 4AE. @iliw13 #iliw13

Sunday 21st April 2013:

Facts into Fiction - Jim Summerscales
A talk on the Luddites and how they were featured in contemporary literature, particularly Charlotte Bronte's 'Shirley'. Jim Summerscales has traced his own family tree to reveal their role in the story of the Luddites. Introduction by Imelda Marsden from the Kirklees Bronte Group.
£3.00. Red House Museum, Oxford Road, Gomersal, Cleckheaton, BD19 4JP. 2.00 - 3.30 p.m.

New Luddism - Immaterial Labour Isn't Working
Who benefits from and is in charge of new technology? What could a life with less rather than more technological innovation be like? Taking ideas of traditional Luddism as a point for departure, Dougald Hine, Dave King (Luddites200) and Jay Springett will join Huw Lemmey to discuss the possibilities for engaging with new technologies and what our relationships to these technologies have become now that it is increasingly difficult to truly “switch off”.
FREE. Unit 2, 3 York Way, King's Cross Central, London, England N1C 4AE. 6.00 - 8.00 p.m. Book here.

Monday 29th April 2013:

The Yorkshire Luddites - Alan Brooke
A talk for East Leeds Historical and Archaeology Society by the West Riding's foremost expert on Luddism, Alan Brooke. Followed by a Pie & Pea supper.
£2.00 to non-members. Crossgates Methodist Church, Austhorpe Road, Cross Gates, Leeds, LS15 8QR. 8.00 p.m.

Friday 3rd - Saturday 4th May 2013:

The Hammer of Defiance - Hanby & Barrett
200 years ago people from Sutton, Kirkby, Hucknall, Linby, Papplewick, Annesley, Mansfield, Selston and all the surrounding villages stood up to the government of the day to demand a better life for themselves and their families. For several weeks the area was at the centre of national attention as politicians, poets, soldiers, framework knitters, newspaper proprietors and judges came face to face with each other in a confrontation that was to have consequences for ordinary people across the country. THIS IS A TRUE STORY OF RIOTS AND RECRIMINATIONS, OF REBELLION, GREED AND REVENGE. Join us at the beautiful Baptist Church in the heart of Kirkby for a Community Theatre Event that marks that moment in history...With live music and a large local cast this will be an evening to be remembered! The performance is FREE and no ticket is required - just turn up. It lasts about 90 minutes with no interval. Families are welcome but some scenes may be unsuitable for young children. Music will be provided by The Army of Redressers. See the Facebook page for more details. Facebook event.
FREE. Forest Street Baptist Church, Kirkby in Ashfield, Notts NG17 7DT. Friday - 8.00 p.m.; Saturday - 5.00 p.m. & 8.00 p.m.

Saturday 4th May 2013:

The Digital, The Immaterial & The Workers' Inquiry: a conversation about resistance and autonomy - Immaterial Labour Isn't Working
What's immaterial about immaterial labour? Does the digital worker balancing three jobs at once, checking her emails on her iPhone last thing at night before being woken by its alarm six hours later, share anything in common with the featureless but heroic immaterial labourer once seen as an emancipatory figure? Does 'immaterial labour' really properly name the kind of work we do – and what kind of work is that? What are strategies of sabotage and resistance at work – and why would it matter? Who and where are all these creative workers anyway? If immaterial utopia – a future free of scarcity and replete with automation – seems as ever distant as it always was, why is it easier and easier to imagine transformations in work as edging closer to dystopia? James Butler and Aaron Peters of Novara Media will present some ideas and then move to an open discussion on some of these themes:

– Technology and the working day
– Automation and its paradoxes: what if the robots steal my job?
– Workers' sabotage; social media melancholia and profit.
– 'Digital'/'Creative' work as a (failed) solution to the ongoing crisis
– The internet is real: the politics of infrastructure and communication
– Why does my life look like my job? The protestant ethic and the spirit of the internet.
– A worker's party against work? But my job is fun!
– 'Post'-Fordism and the rise of the info-prole.
– Workers' Inquiry, or, I work *how* many hours a week?

FREE. Unit 2, 3 York Way, King's Cross Central, London, England N1C 4AE. 2.00 - 4.00 p.m. Book here

Tuesday 7th May 2013:

The Influencing Machine - Mike Jay
Mike Jay will discuss the case of James Tilly Matthews, an “incurable lunatic” confined to Bedlam in 1797. Matthews insisted his mind was being controlled by a machine. He is regarded as the first person to present clear symptoms of paranoid schizophrenia, and the Air Loom was an example of paranoid delusion now known as “the influencing machine.” What seems to be delusion, might alternatively be understood as a heightened ability to read technological change. Author, historian and curator Mike Jay has written widely on the cultural history of drugs, and psychiatry. This event will be broadcast live online.
FREE. Nottingham Contemporary, Weekday Cross, Nottingham, NG1 2GB. 6.30 - 8.30 p.m. Booking required.

Saturday 11th May 2013:

The Making of the English Working Class: Fifty Years On - Labour History Research Unit
A one-day conference organised by the Labour History Research Unit at Anglia Ruskin University in co-operation with the Victorian Study Centre at Saffron Walden. Speakers include: David Goodway, Emma Griffin, John Seed, John Gardner, Gareth Steadman Jones, Jeremy Krikler & Andy Wood.
£12.00 (includes refreshments, but not lunch). Lab 107, Anglia Ruskin University, East Road, Cambridge, CB1 1PT. 10.00 a.m. - 17.15 p.m. Book here.

Friday 17th May 2013:

Museums at Night - Working Class Movement Library
Come and celebrate the start of Museums at Night weekend with late opening at the Library. From 7pm browse our exhibition about E.P. Thompson`s classic text The Making of the English Working Class on its 50th anniversary. Then join us at 7.30 for a showing of Luke Fowler's new film 'The Poor Stockinger, the Luddite Cropper and the Deluded Followers of Joanna Southcott', which reflects on Thompson's life and times. Turner Prize nominee Fowler's film mixes archive footage with newly-shot material in an evocative video essay about the critic, historian and activist E.P. Thompson. It captures a moment of optimism, in which Thompson's ideas for progressive education came together with political resistance and activism.
FREE. Working Class Movement Library, 51 The Crescent, Salford, U.K. M5 4WX. 7.00 p.m. (exhibition) 7.30 p.m. (film)

Saturday 18th May 2013:

E.P. Thompson Celebration - Festival of Ideas
In this special afternoon event, we celebrate Thompson with the screening of films about his life and work followed by a panel discussion on his importance as an historian, intellectual and activist for social justice and peace. The panelists include Professor Penelope Corfield, Royal Holloway College, London University; Emma Griffin, author of Liberty’s Dawn: a People’s History of the Industrial Revolution; and Steve Poole, Associate Professor of Social and Cultural History and Director, Regional History Centre, UWE. Films: Rear Window: A Life of Dissent – Remembering E P Thompson (Channel 4, 1993): a tribute to Thompson from friend and colleagues. Something to Say: Edward Thompson on William Blake (BBC, 1969) Arena: Taking Our Time (BBC, 1977-8):the making and performance of a play reflecting the conflict between hand-loom weavers of the North and the newly mechanised world of the Industrial Revolution.
£12.00/£10.00. Watershed, 1 Canon’s Road, Harbourside, Bristol, BS1 5TX. 1 p.m. - 5 p.m. Book here.

Saturday 8th - Sunday 9th June 2013:

Pentrich Rising Commemorations - Nottinghamshire Trades Union Council


Saturday from 2.00p.m. The main commemoration event is at South Wingfield Social Club, 43 High Road, South Wingfield, Near Alfreton, DE55 7LX.  Entertainment provided by Nottingham Clarion Choir, Rosa’s Lovely Daughters and Others. FREE.

Sunday: Walking the Pentrich Revolution Trail. Meet outside The Dog Inn for a walk starting at 10.30 a.m.  There will be two guided walks – one of 5 miles and one of 2 ½ miles, both returning to The Dog Inn. Email rogertanner@yahoo.co.uk to book a place or book at the Commemoration on the Saturday.

Parking is around the village or on the verge down Asher Lane. Customer parking only at The Dog Inn.

Wednesday 26th June 2013:

The Influencing Machine: James Tilly Matthews and the Air Loom - Mike Jay at The Last Tuesday Society
Confined in Bedlam in 1797 as an incurable lunatic, James Tilly Matthews’ case is one of the most bizarre in the annals of psychiatry. He was the first person to insist that his mind was being controlled by a machine: the Air Loom, a terrifying secret weapon whose mesmeric rays and mysterious gases were brainwashing politicians and plunging Europe into revolution, terror and war. But Matthews’ case was even stranger than his doctors realised: many of the incredible conspiracies in which he claimed to be involved were entirely real. Caught up in high-level diplomatic intrigues in the chaos of the French revolution, he found himself betrayed by both sides, and in possession of a secret that no-one would believe…
£7.00 11 Mare Street, London, E8 4RP. 6.30 for 7.00 p.m. Book here.

Monday 8th July 2013:

Breaking the Frame: discussions on the politics of technology
Part 1 - Technology out of control? Drones, Killer Robots and the Arms Trade - Luddites 200
Remote controlled drones have already caused many civilian casualties in the 'war on terror', and people in the target zones and in Britain are campaigning against their use. But the military is moving towards letting battlefield 'killer robots' take their own decisions without human input. Should we allow computers to decide who lives and who dies, and who is legally responsible for their actions? This first meeting in our 'Breaking the Frame' series on the politics of technology will address some of the ethical and 'existential' issues raised by the march of technocracy. There will be plenty of time for informal discussion. Speakers include: Anne-Marie O'Reilly (Campaign Against the Arms Trade); Chris Cole (Drones Campaign Network); Richard Moyes (Campaign to Stop Killer Robots). For more information, contact luddites200@yahoo.co.uk.
FREE. Fairly Square cafe, 51 Red Lion Street, London, WC1R 4PF. Facebook event.

Sunday 7th - Sunday 21st July:

Full Employment in a Free Society - Tim Shore
Artist Tim-Shore is exhibiting the above installation as part of the Belper Art Trail 2013. Here are his comments from the Trail Guide: Full Employment in a Free Society (1944) is a favourite work because it captures different elements and concerns of my practice and suggests associations between: language and text, history, technology and society, and the hand made. The title refers to the book by economist and social reformer William Beveridge (‘architect of the welfare state’) - Full Employment in a Free Society (1944). The book opens with the phrase ‘misery generates hate’, itself a quotation from Charlotte Brontë’s novel Shirley (1849), which includes a fictionalised account of the 1812 Luddite uprising in the West Yorkshire woollen industry. The installation is made from punched newsprint paper, string, a wooden frame held together with G-clamps and resting on bricks. The sheets of newsprint that cascade off the simple frame are punched with a continuous text that appears to run on and reads, over and over again: ‘misery generates hate’. The punched paper and the frame it is attached to recalls the automation and mechanisation of the weaving process (the Jacquard loom) and in running the words together, suggesting how language and meaning (and history) can be lost or difficult to ‘read’. The work is also a favourite for the context of Belper with its rich industrial history and the wider Derwent Valley Mills World Heritage site. It is about mechanisation, the digital, the replacement of the human by the machine, employment and the current coalition government’s austerity programme. You can meet Tim at the venue & talk to him about his work on Sunday 7th July between 1.00 p.m. - 3.00 p.m. 
£3.50 adults, £3 conc, £2 children, £9 family. The basement at Srutt's North Mill, Bridgefoot, Belper, Derbyshire, DE56 1YD.

Monday 12th August 2013:

Breaking the Frame: discussions on the politics of technology
Part 2 - New nuclear - Climate Chiller of Silent Chiller? - Luddites 200
Nuclear power is not a new technology, but it is perhaps the most dangerous technology we have at present, as the Fukushima disaster has shown. The UK government is still pressing ahead with plans for new nuclear reactors at Hinkley and Sizewell, plans which have sparked fierce local resistance. Is the nuclear power the answer to climate change or is it sure to lead to further disasters and nuclear weapons proliferation? Is there a basic problem with nuclear technology? There will be plenty of time for informal discussion. Introductions from: Nikki Clarke - Stop Hinkley Campaign; Atsuko Kamura - Japanese Against Nuclear UK; Peter Lux - Shutdown Sizewell.
FREE. Fairly Square cafe, 51 Red Lion Street, London, WC1R 4PF. 7.00 p.m. Facebook event

Monday 9th September 2013:

Breaking the Frame: discussions on the politics of technology
Part 3 - Gender and the Politics of Technology
- Luddites 200
In the home and at work, women and men have different relationships to technology.  Women have traditionally been excluded from science and engineering and are put in the role of users and operators of new technology.  Do technologies like IVF and domestic machinery really benefit women or entrench their existing social roles?  How do shifts in technology affect the oppression of women? Speakers include: Cynthia Cockburn, feminist activist and author; David King, Human Genetics Alert; Connie Hunter, Women's Environmental Network.
FREE. Fairly Square cafe, 51 Red Lion Street, London, WC1R 4PF. 7.00 p.m.

Thursday 12th September:

'The Luddites: Nottingham's Response' - Peter Hammond
A talk for Lowdham Local History Society.
Lowdham Women's Institute Hall, Main Street, Lowdham, NG14 1AB. 7.30p.m.

Wednesday 18th September 2013:

"New Luddism" - Future Human
Who are these ‘New Luddites’, what do they want – and do they have a point? Are they wild idealists or simply more attuned to the future direction of industrial society than the common person? And as New Luddism picks up momentum, should we consider it a humanist strike against the darkest encroachments of technology on our lives, or a dangerous idea that will sow division and discord? (the rest of the execrable blurb for this event can be read here). Speakers: Adam Wood (Stop the Cyborgs); Andy Miah (Creative Futures Institute); Dave King (Luddites 200/Breaking the Frame).
£10.00 (book online). The Book Club, 100 Leonard Street, Shoreditch, London, EC2A 4RH. 7.00 p.m.

Saturday 5th October - Sunday 1st December 2013:

'The Poor Stockinger, the Luddite Cropper and the Deluded Followers or Joanna Southcott' by Luke Fowler
This new film, showing at Plymouth Arts Centre, focuses on the work of Marxist historian Edward Palmer Thompson who, at the age of 25, was employed by the WEA (Workers’ Educational Association) in Yorkshire. He taught literature and history to adults who, historically, had been unable to access higher education, including miners, factory workers and the unemployed. E.P Thompson and his peers, Raymond Williams and Richard Hoggart, were committed to the WEA values of delivering a ‘socially purposeful’ education and to the cause of adult education as an engine for cultural democracy. Luke Fowler’s film explores the issues that were at stake for post war progressive educationalists and exposes an historical struggle that resonates within education today. The film’s title The Poor Stockinger, the Luddite Cropper and the Deluded Followers of Joanna Southcott is a quotation from E.P Thompson’s book, The Making of the English Working Class. The Artist, Luke Fowler, will be giving a talk about the film on Thursday 7th November which is FREE.
FREE. Plymouth Arts Centre, 38 Looe Street, Plymouth, PL4 0EB. More details here.

Thursday 3rd - Saturday 5th October 2013:

The Global E. P. Thompson: Reflections on the Making of the English Working Class after Fifty Years - Harvard University
Fifty years ago E. P. Thompson published The Making of the English Working Class, one of the most influential social history works ever. Its approach to the history of common people, its arguments and its methods came to influence several generations of historians and others all over the world. To trace Thompson’s influences, and with it the larger story of the varied approaches to social history that have come out of them, the Program on the Study of Capitalism and the Weatherhead Initiative on Global History at Harvard University seek to initiate a global conversation among researchers across the humanities and social sciences to reflect critically on Thompson's impact on the writing of history and his enduring significance for future research. At a time of global economic crises, as scholarship returns to themes of class, inequality and political economy with renewed interest, urgency, and moral purpose, the fiftieth anniversary of the Making of the English Working Class offers a welcome opportunity to both critically reflect on Thompson's scholarship and consider the ways in which his ideas, methods and commitments can still inspire intellectual frameworks and research programs that speak to present global problems. This event will be streamed live on the internet. View the programme here.
Harvard University, Rooms S020, S010 of CGIS South, 1730 Cambridge St, Cambridge, MA 02138, USA. Registration required.

Monday 14th October 2013:

Breaking the Frame: discussions on the politics of technology
Part 4 - Financial Crisis and Austerity: the Role of Technology
- Luddites 200
The ongoing financial crisis has exposed the fragility of the banking and finance system, and the 2008 crash would have been impossible without the 'dark magic' of computer-generated derivatives. But while we continue to debate banker's bonuses, automated High Frequency Trading has taken over the stock market, creating new volatility as algorithms complete trades in milliseconds.  Back in the real world of austerity created by the crisis, automation is contributing to public sector job loss, as workers are replaced with machines.  How can we get technology to serve people not profit?
Speakers: Dave Dewhurst (Occupy London Economics Working Group); Speakers from Corporate Watch and Kaput TBC
FREE. Fairly Square cafe, 51 Red Lion Street, London, WC1R 4PF. 7.00 p.m.

Saturday 19th October 2013:

Capitalism, Crisis & the Politics of Technology - Luddites200
200 years of industrial capitalism since the Luddite uprisings has brought us to the brink of environmental disaster.  But in order to continue business as usual, fracking proliferates and the technocratic class are trying to develop dangerous techno-fixes like climate engineering and synthetic biology.  Meanwhile, technology continues to destroy people’s livelihoods, the state and ‘Big Data’ surveys our every communication and a techno-fascist ‘transhumanist’ movement seeks to turn us all into machines.  What is the underlying politics of technology that drives these disparate changes?  This workshop will be part of preparations for the Breaking the Frame gathering in May 2014, which will create a new activist network on the politics of technology. Part of the London Anarchist Bookfair.
FREE. Room 2.40, Bancroft building, Queen Mary University of London, Mile End. 11.00-12.00 p.m.

Thursday 17th October - Sunday 3rd November 2013:

Caution: Misery Generates Hate - Tim Shore
Artist Tim Shore is exhibiting this likely Luddite-themed artwork (the title is a line from Charlotte Bronte's 'Shirley') as part of the art:language:location exhibition in Cambridge in the autumn of 2013.
FURTHER DETAILS TBA

Saturday 2nd November 2013:

Presentation & Discussion on Luddism - Luddite Bicentenary
I have been invited to present a session on the Luddites, as well as this website and the work of the Luddites200 group at the inaugural conference of a new radical history initiative 'Radical Valleys', which will examine the radical history of the Colne & Calder valleys and its relevance to the present day. The conference will take place at the Red and Green Club, Banwell Road, Milnsbridge, and there is a £12 registration fee for waged (free to students and unwaged). More details here.

Sunday 10th November 2013:

Historical Materialism 2013 - Making the World Working Class
The annual conference of the eponymous Marxist journal this years pays particular attention to E.P. Thompson, in the fiftieth anniversary year of 'The Making of the English Working Class'. Two sessions on the Sunday are of particular relevance: at 10.00 a.m. in the Khalili Lecture Theatre at SOAS, Dr Matthew Roberts presents a paper titled 'E. P.Thompson, Luddism and The Making of the English Working Class'. In an unfortunate scheduling oversight, Luke Fowler's film 'The Poor Stockinger, the Luddite Cropper and the Deluded Followers or Joanna Southcott' will be shown at 10.00 a.m. in Room G50 at SOAS.
DONATION, SOAS, Malet Street, London.

Monday 11th November 2013:

Breaking the Frame: discussions on the politics of technology
Part 5 - Food, GM and Synthetic Biology
- Luddites 200
No-one can be indifferent to the politics of food, and that may be why the anti-GM food campaign has been the most successful campaign on the politics of technology ever. But despite unresolved environmental issues and accumulating evidence of health risks, the GM corporations continue to push this technology. Their aim is to intensify industrial agriculture and their control over the entire food chain. Now with 'synthetic biology' they are aiming at the industrialisation of life itself. How can we resist these threats? Speakers: Jyoti Fernandes (La Via Campesina UK), Laura Pearson (March Against Monsanto London), Helena Paul (Econexus). There will also be an exhibition of classic posters on the politics of technology, produced by Christine Halsall of Chimera Publications. Preceding the meeting at 6.00 p.m. will be a discussion on the politics of technology. Facebook event.
FREE. Fairly Square cafe, 51 Red Lion Street, London, WC1R 4PF. 7.00 p.m.

Saturday 16th November 2013:

E P Thompson Symposium - Society for the Study of Labour History
A lecture and discussion on the life and work of E. P. Thompson (1924-1993), leading radical historian and author of the seminal The Making of the English Working Class (1963). Professor Bryan D. Palmer (Trent University, Ontario) will deliver a key note lecture on ‘History as Argument: The Contrarian Analytics of The Making of the English Working Class’ followed by a roundtable discussion chaired by Professor Neville Kirk. Panelists will include: Professor John Belchem, Professor Malcolm Chase, Professor Joe White, Professor Paul Pickering, Dr Peter Gurney, Professor D. Palmer, Dr Matthew Roberts and Dr Katrina Navickas. In the afternoon Dr John Hargreaves will lead a local history walk to the house where the Thompsons lived where a plaque will be unveiled. See flyer for more details (opens PDF). There will be a social in a local pub afterwards.
FREE (but booking necessary, see flyer) Halifax Square Chapel, Halifax. 10.00 a.m. - 3.30 p.m.

Monday 9th December 2013:

Breaking the Frame: discussions on the politics of technology
Part 6 - Extreme Energy and Geoengineering / Poetry Launch and Seasonal Party
- Luddites 200
The consequences of fracking and other forms of extreme energy for local environments and climate change seem obviously disastrous, so why do they persist? After 200 years of techno-capitalism, it is not just greed that has brought us to the brink of ecological disaster.  But for technocrats, engineers and corporations, the solution is more of the same: technology will fix the problem, and let us continue business as usual. In this case, they think they can engineer the planet’s climate through insane experiments like blasting sulphur particles into the upper atmosphere to reflect sunlight, or trying to change the chemistry of the oceans. The results of these technofixes may be much worse than climate change. How can we stop these irrational schemes and move to a sustainable energy supply? Speakers: Pete Deane (Biofuelwatch); a speaker from Frack Off. The second half of the event will be a seasonal party, including the launch of Luddite's200 long-awaited poetry anthology, 'Words in Praise of Ned Ludd'. Pete the Temp will perform some of his and others' Luddite poetry. Preceding the meeting at 6.00 p.m. will be a discussion on the politics of technology. Facebook event.
FREE. Fairly Square cafe, 51 Red Lion Street, London, WC1R 4PF. 7.00 p.m. 

Monday 13th January 2014:

Breaking the Frame: discussions on the politics of technology
Part 7 - The politics of alternative technology and workers’ plans
- Luddites 200
Radical movements, appreciating the importance of technology, have often tried to appropriate or modify it, or even to create their own technologies. ‘Alternative’ or ‘sustainable’ technology has now become part of the mainstream, but has it lost sight of the principles of its founders, such as E F Schumacher?  Has it become just another techno-fix?  Trade unionists have also put forward alternative plans for how to use technology in the common interest, rather than those of corporations and the military. But can industrial megatechnologies ever really solve the problems that industrial capitalism has created? Can the Green and Left critiques of technology be combined? Speakers: Patrick Mulvany (Practical Action); Suzanne Jeffery (One Million Climate Jobs). The second half of the meeting will be an opportunity for people to give input on the Breaking the Frame gathering. 
FREE. Fairly Square cafe, 51 Red Lion Street, London, WC1R 4PF. 7.00 p.m. Facebook event.

Thursday 16th January 2014:

Inaugural Luddite Memorial Lecture - Dr Matthew Roberts
The first annual Luddite Memorial Lecture - dedicated to the late Lesley Kipling, a local historian - is to be given at Huddersfield University by Dr Matthew Roberts of Sheffield Hallam University. It is entitled 'Luddism Through the Chartist Looking Glass: Shirley & the Modernisation of Popular Protest'. Your RSVP is requested to huddhistorysecretary@gmail.com
FREE. Canalside East (CEG/28), Firth Street, Huddersfield, HD1 3BZ. 7.30 p.m.

Monday 10th February 2014:

Breaking the Frame: discussions on the politics of technology
Part 8 - Digital technology, surveillance and Big Data

Recent revelations about the use of Big Data for ‘predictive policing’ in the US, the scandal over spying by the US National Security Agency, and the selling of users’ data by Facebook to other corporations, have highlighted the extent of state and corporate surveillance. While digital technologies are often useful for individuals, deeper questions need to be asked about their structural function in our society. Is campaigning for privacy and internet freedom and taking personal security measures enough? Speakers from Open Rights Group & Statewatch
FREE. Fairly Square cafe, 51 Red Lion Street, London, WC1R 4PF. 7.00 p.m. Facebook event.

Wednesday 26th February 2014:

Nottingham and the Pentrich Revolution - Michael Clark
This is a talk for Wollaton Historical & Conservation Society.
FREE to members, £2 to visitors. St Leonard’s Community Centre, Bramcote Lane, Wollaton, NG8 2ND. 7.30 p.m.

Thursday 27th February 2014:

Human Enhancement – Promises, Problems & Possibilities - Cybersalon
Cybersalon’s ‘Human Enhancement – Promises, Problems & Possibilities’ will address the societal impacts and policy implications of [human enhancement and augmentation] and will include an assessment of the educational, economic, commercial, legal, ethical, political, and social implications. Speakers include: Professor Steve Fuller (University of Warwick); Dr Rachel Armstrong (University of Greenwich); Nigel Ackland (Bebionic); Frank Swain (BBC Future); Dave King (Luddites200); Veronika Pete (Alternative Limb Project); Luke Robert Mason.
Cost/Tickets TBA. DigitasLBi, 146 Brick Lane (Old Truman Brewery), London, E1 6RU. 6.30 p.m. Facebook Event

Monday 10th March 2014:

Breaking the Frame: discussions on the politics of technology
Part 9 - 30 Years on from Bhopal – Can we Control Toxics and Nanotechnology?
As we approach the 30th anniversary of the Bhopal disaster, the effects of toxicchemicals upon people and the environment are still amongst the most harmful impacts of industrial capitalism. The continuing resistance of chemicals corporations and legislators to precautionary approaches and the widespread conflicts of scientific interest continue to hamper efforts at clean-up, whilst the health and safety of workers is routinely ridiculed in the mainstream media. Meanwhile these same corporations are developing new technologies including GM and ‘synthetic’ organisms and are busy marketing potentially unsafe products of nano-technology. How can we put these issues back at the centre of public debate? Speakers: Colin Toogood, Bhopal Medical Foundation; Helen Lynn, Alliance for Cancer Prevention; Michael Reinsborough, Stop Unsafe Nanosilver.
FREE. Feminist Library, 5 Westminster Bridge Road, London SE1 7XW. 7.00 p.m. Facebook event.

Saturday 12th April 2014:

Luddite Martyrs Weekend - Luddite Bicentenary/Huddersfield Anarchist League/'Fraid Not Society
In what we hope will be an annual event, you are invited to commemorate the Luddite Martyrs who gave their lives over 200 years ago so that working-class people could envisage a different version of 'progress' than that imposed by the government and manufacturers and upheld by their inheritors ever since. 202 years after the failed Luddite attack on Rawfolds Mill, we invite admirers of the Luddites and those who carry their torch today to gather at the site of the new memorial to them in Liversedge. Gather at 5.30 p.m. at the Cropper monument to remember the Luddites before joining Spen Valley Civic Society's commemoration at the Shears Public House. A mock-up of a shearing frame will be destroyed by members of the 'Fraid Not Society. Food will be laid on.
FREE Liversedge Sparrow Park (junction of Knowler Hill & Halifax Road/A649), Liversedge. Starting at approximately 17.30 p.m. facebook event

Monday 14th April 2014:

Breaking the Frame: discussions on the politics of technology
Part 10 - Mental Health’, Big Pharma and the new Eugenics
Modern medicine is often trumpeted as one of the greatest examples of technological progress.  But technocratic medicine also has a very dark side:

- Side effects of drugs are in the top ten causes of premature deaths
- Continuing historic eugenic tendencies under the rubric of reproductive choice, pre-natal testing prevents the birth of thousands of disabled people
- The medicalisation of mental distress serves the financial interest of drug companies but often fails to address the real problems of highly vulnerable people

Meanwhile, as the NHS suffers increasing privatisation, the government wants to sell our electronic medical records to the pharmaceutical industry. This event will explore how genomics and other high-tech medical trends are detracting from public health approaches and basic human-centred treatment. Speakers: Micheline Mason, a writer and leading advocate of inclusive education will discuss the rights of disabled people and the history of eugenics; Redmond O’Hanlon from the Critical Psychiatry Network will look at the problems of drug-based psychiatry and how this serves the interests of the pharmaceutical industry; Fleur Fisher former head of Medical Ethics at the BMA will speak about the campaign against government plans to allow drug companies access to the NHS medical records database.

FREE. Feminist Library, 5 Westminster Bridge Road, London SE1 7XW. 7.00 p.m. Facebook event.

Friday 2nd May to Monday 5th May 2014:

Breaking the Frame: A Gathering on the Politics of Technology
Our system of industrial capitalism is in both economic and environmental crisis.  Part of the cause of these crises is the technologies that we use – although they do of course bring benefits, technologies are largely designed and controlled by corporate, military and technocratic elites to serve their interests and exert their power. So, in order to really face up to those crises we need a new politics of technology, a politics that goes beyond the myths that technology is just a neutral tool or that technological advances necessarily bring progress. The Breaking the Frame gathering is a step towards creating that new politics. We will be bringing together campaigns on the technology politics of food, energy/climate/ environment, work/economics/austerity, the military, the internet, surveillance health and gender, as well as trade unionists, radical scientists, artists and developers of alternative technologies.  The aim is to learn from each other and to build a new network, to strengthen campaigns and make issues about technology more central in radical movements. Some of the issues we’ll discuss include:

- What does a critical politics of technology mean in the 21st century: democratic control or ‘low technology’?
- History of industrial society and environmental crisis; challenging the concept of progress through technology 

- Experiences in different campaigns and struggles
- Alternative visions of social and technological development, and the transition to a sustainable and socially just society.

There will be demonstrations and workshops on craft-based production, poetry, music, walking etc. If you are interested in the gathering please email luddites200@yahoo.co.uk.


Confirmed speakers: Jerry Mander (International Forum on Globalisation), Simon Fairlie (editor, The Land Magazine), Hilary Wainwright (editor, Red Pepper), Theo Simon (Stop Hinkley C), Danny Chivers (No Dash for Gas).
Unstone Grange, Crow Lane, Unstone, Derbyshire, S18 4AL. Online booking here. Facebook event.

Saturday 10th May 2014:

Luddite Talk/Walk - Boff Whalley
Historical Luddite talk (1 hour) with song from Boff Whalley, author, playwright, and musician, (ex Chumbawumba) followed by a 5 mile guided walk retracing the boot steps of a night time Luddite March in 1812. Bring a picnic.
£2.00. All Souls Church Hall, Liversedge Hall Lane, Liversedge, WF15 7DB. 11.00 am.

Friday 16th & Sunday 18th May 2014:

'Luddite' by Howard Pflanzer
A staged reading of Howard Pflanzer's play, directed by Joel Bernstein and starring: Zoe Anastassiou, Aron Bederson, Richard Keyser, Mikel Sara Lambert, Clinton Powell, and Maduka Steady. Three dissident 19th-century English weavers try to thwart technological progress by wrecking industrial power looms; these “Luddites” also appear as 21st-century computer hackers, who destroy the world wide web to make a political statement. The mythic figure of Ned Ludd presides where rebellion, intrigue and government persecution intersect.
$7.00. Medicine Show Theatre, 549 West 52nd Street, 3rd Floor (10-11 Aves.), New York City. 7.30 p.m.

Wednesday 4th June 2014:

Where are the Luddites - An Open Call for Bio-Luddites - Near Now
Join us for this panel discussion initiated by speculative designer, Lisa Ma; to search for the relevance of Luddism in the modern era by shifting focus from digital and communications technologies to the invisible innovations of biotechnology industries. Taking the complex debate surrounding monocultures, GMOs, systems ecology, food deserts, sugar addiction, hormone replacement and public healthcare out of the test tube, beyond the academic, and into society. Panelists include: Lisa Ma; Ben Vickers (Serpentine Galleries, unMonastery); David King (Luddites200); John O’Shea (Meat License) and more TBC. Buy tickets online here or call the box office on 0115 952 6611.
£5.00/£4.00. Broadway, 14-18 Broad Street, Nottingham, NG1 3AL. 6.15 - 8.00 p.m.

Tuesday 17th June 2014:

Arnold & the Luddites - Dr Robert Matthews
(No cost details available) Arnold Local History Group, Arnold Labour Club, 79 High Street, Arnold, NG5 7DN. 7.00 p.m.

Saturday 21st June 2014:

Hurrah for the Luddites: Challenging the Myths about Luddism - Wakefield Socialist History Group
Speakers: Ken Rowley (ex Vice-President, NUM), Shaun Cohen (Ford Maguire Society), Dave King (Luddites 200).
FREE (& free buffet!) Red Shed, Vicarage Street, Wakefield, West Yorkshire, WF1 1QX. 2.00-4.00 p.m. Facebook event

Monday 14th July 2014:

Breaking the Frame Reading Group
Following the success of the Breaking the Frame gathering, the Breaking the Frame working group has decided to set up a monthly reading group on the politics of technology. We will look at some classic writers, such as Lewis Mumford, Carolyn Merchant, E.F. Schumacher, Ivan Illich, etc as well as more current writers, e.g. Evgeny Morozov. The reading for the first meeting of the group will be Langdon Winner's 'Do Artifacts Have Politics?'
FREE. LARC, 62 Fieldgate Street, London E1 1ES. 7.00 p.m.

Sunday 27th July 2014:

The Pit & the Plough & the Pentrich Revolution - Chapter & Verse
A programme of talks, readings, prose & poetry by Chapter & Verse members on the subject of the Pentrich Rising. Featuring Dr. David Amos.
FREE. The Sun Inn, 6 Derby Road, Eastwood, Nottingham, NG16 3NT. 10.30 a.m. to 3.00 p.m.

Monday 18th August 2014:

Breaking the Frame Reading Group
Following the success of the Breaking the Frame gathering, the Breaking the Frame working group has decided to set up a monthly reading group on the politics of technology. Our second reading is from Carolyn Merchant's classic 'The Death of Nature'. Merchant looks at the shift in worldview created by the Scientific Revolution of the 17th century, its gender politics and the establishment of the technocratic modern regime.
FREE. LARC, 62 Fieldgate Street, London E1 1ES. 7.00 p.m.

Wednesday 10th September 2014:

Luddism around Nottingham - Matthew Roberts
A talk for Sutton Bonnington Local History Society.
Cost TBC. Sutton Bonnington Methodist Church Schoolroom, Main Street, Sutton Bonnington, LE12 5NE. 7.30 p.m.

Monday 15th September 2014:

Breaking the Frame Reading Group
The September reading group will look at mid-20th century critiques of technocratic Fordist/Keynesian society.  The main reading is Herbert Marcuse's One Dimensional Man which was  highly influential for the New Left and the 1960s liberation movements, with its argument that technological rationality had created a society of total conformity. For those who are particularly interested in this theme, we have also uploaded a section of Theodor Adorno and Max Horkheimer's classic Dialectic of Enlightenment, which asks how scientific Enlightenment reason produced the horrors of fascism and the Holocaust. They argue that in its attempt to exorcise human fear of nature, as expressed in animism and mythology, scientific Enlightenment thought created a system of domination of nature, which hardened into its own myth, because it failed to be critical of itself.  (Be warned - the text is difficult but, in our view, important). The texts can be found here.
FREE. LARC, 62 Fieldgate Street, London E1 1ES. 7.00 p.m.

Thursday 25th September 2014:

Pentrich Revolution Walk - Nottinghamshire & Derbyshire Labour History Society
Roger Tanner will lead a 5 mile walk around the area of Pentrich, following the footsteps of the Pentrich rebels.  The walk is organised as part of the Amber Valley and Erewash Walking Festival. Booking is recommended, ring Shipley Country Park on 01773 719961. The walk includes about 6 stiles and is graded 'moderate'. Children welcome & dogs allowed.
FREE. Meet at Village Hall car park, Main Road, Pentrich DE5 3RE. Grid Ref: SK 389 528. 10.00 a.m. (finishes approx 1.00 p.m.)

Saturday 11th October 2014:

Miscarriages of Justice - Derby Peoples History
An afternoon guided walk in Derby around places associated with the Pentrich Revolution and the execution of the three rebels. It will start at 3 p.m. from outside the Guildhall, and take about two hours. The evening event will cover miscarriages of justice including the Pentrich trial and executions, the imprisonment of Alice Wheeldon, the 1984/5 Miners Strike, and recent cases of police "spies” acting as agent provocateurs in campaigns.
FREE. Derby West Indian Community Association, Trinity Street, Derby. 3.00 p.m. (walk), 6.00 p.m. (evening event).

Monday 17th November 2014:

Breaking the Frame Reading Group
The November reading group looks at two classics of 20th Century technology critique, 'Authoritarian and Democratic Technics' by Lewis Mumford and 'Tools for Conviviality' by Ivan Illich. The texts can be found here.
FREE. LARC, 62 Fieldgate Street, London E1 1ES. 7.00 p.m.

Friday 21st to Saturday 22nd November 2014:

Being Human festival - The Hammer of Defiance
200 years ago people from the Nottinghamshire towns of Sutton, Kirkby, Hucknall, Linby, Papplewick, Annesley, Mansfield, Selston and all the surrounding villages stood up to the government of the day to demand a better life for themselves and their families. For several weeks the area was at the centre of national attention as politicians, poets, soldiers, framework knitters, newspaper proprietors and judges came face to face with each other in a confrontation that was to have consequences for ordinary people across the country. This is a true story of riots and recriminations, of rebellion, greed and revenge. Join us at the Galleries of Justice, for a performance of the play in the historic location where many of the protagonists would have met: Court Room 1. To book tickets, call 0115 9520555 (opt 6) or email info@galleriesofjustice.org.uk
£7 adults, £6 children/concessions. Galleries of Justice Museum, The Lace Market, Nottingham, NG1 1HN. Friday 21st: 8:00-9:30 p.m.; Saturday 22nd: 3:00–4:30 p.m. & 8:00–9:30 p.m.

Monday 15th December 2014:

Breaking the Frame Reading Group
The December meeting will continue to look at 'Tools for Conviviality' by Ivan Illich. The texts can be found here.
FREE. LARC, 62 Fieldgate Street, London E1 1ES. 7.00 p.m.

Wednesday 15th January 2015:

Luddites and Lacemakers - Tony Jarram
Intrigue and innovation, in this fascinating look at Loughborough's lace making heritage with Tony Jarram. Facebook event.
£3 (£1 members). Charnwood Museum Queens Park, Granby Street, Loughborough, Leicestershire, LE11 3DU. 19.30 p.m.

Monday 19th January 2015:

Breaking the Frame Reading Group
The January reading group looks at Marxism and technology (particularly digital technology) by looking at some sections of Nick Dyer-Witheford’s Cyber-Marx. The most important sections to read if you can’t manage everything, are pages 1-5, 38-42, 48-54, 62-72 and 76-79.
FREE. LARC, 62 Fieldgate Street, London E1 1ES. 7.00 p.m.

Monday 16th February 2015:

Breaking the Frame Reading Group
The February reading group will look at Jacques Ellul’s classic of technology critique 'The Technological Society'. The most important sections to read are the notes to reader and chapter 1. The section from chapter 2 is rather long but is broken down into subsections which are significant so We would suggest reading a few paragraphs of each subsection. It is available here (downloads PDF).
FREE. LARC, 62 Fieldgate Street, London E1 1ES. 7.00 p.m.

Friday 20th February 2015:

'Borders and Technology' - Breaking the Frame
A look at contemporary and historical surveillance and control over the movement of people, plus resistance. Speakers from: Statewatch, Bristol Radical History and others to be confirmed.
FREE. Hydra Books, 34 Old Market, Bristol, BS2 0EZ. 7.00 - 9.00 p.m.

Saturday 28th to Sunday 29th March 2015:

Gender and the Politics of Technology - Breaking the Frame
At the first Breaking the Frame gathering in 2014, women started developing a feminist analysis of the intersection between gender and the politics of technology and how it impacts on all aspects of our lives, e.g. in food production, work, surveillance, digital technology, and health. At this event we will continue that process, focusing on reproductive technologies. Public debate in this area has mainly been framed as science versus religious reaction, which tends to ignore any feminist analysis. We shall be asking: are these technologies of benefit to women, and if so, which women, or do they risk our health and integrate our bodies further into the patriarchal capitalist system? Join us to explore the issues with an outstanding set of speakers:

- Jalna Hanmer and Stevienna de Saille on the radical feminist analysis of reproductive technologies
- Rahila Gupta on sex selection and abortion
- Donna Dickenson and Carolin Shurr on international and commercial surrogacy
- Miriam Zoll on the impact of IVF on women

For more information or to book, contact info@breakingtheframe.org.uk. All self-defining women welcome. Cheap vegan food. Venue is disabled accessible. Outline programme (PDF). Flyer.
Recommended minimum donation £5. The Feminist Library meeting room, 5 Westminster Bridge Road, London, SE1 7XW. Saturday March 28th 7 p.m. – Sunday March 29th 5 p.m.

Saturday 11th April 2015:

Luddite Plaque Unveiling - Spen Valley Civic Society/'Fraid Not Society Spen Valley Civic Society will unveil a plaque to the Luddites at the Shears Public House in Liversedge. Food will be laid on.
FREE The Shears Inn, Liversedge. Starting at approximately 1.30 p.m.  

Radical Science and Alternative Technology: From the 70s to the Present - Breaking the Frame
In our highly technological industrial society, key issues hinge on the politics of science and technology. In the 1970s and 80s the British Society for Social Responsibility in Science and the alternative technology movement campaigned against harmful corporate and military uses of technology, for 'appropriate technology' and for 'science for the people.' These perspectives are critically needed in the current environmental crisis, whilst surveillance, automation and workplace hazards continue to be major issues. Speakers: Introductions by Hilary and Steven Rose (BSSRS), Peter Harper (Centre for Alternative Technology), David King (Breaking the Frame); Energy/food politics by Les Levidow (BSSRS), Helena Paul (Econexus), Paul Mobbs (Mobbs' Environmental Investigations); Social control/surveillance by Jonathan Rosenhead (BSSRS), Maria Farrell (Open Rights Group); Work hazards by Tony Fletcher (BSSRS Work Hazards Group). For more information contact luddites200@yahoo.co.uk or visit www.breakingtheframe.org.uk
FREE Feminist Library, 5 Westminster Bridge Road, London SE1 7XW. 1.00 p.m. to 5.30 p.m.

Thursday 16th April 2015:

2015 Luddite Memorial Lecture - Professor Malcolm Chase
The second annual Luddite Memorial Lecture is this year held on the anniversary of the burial of the Luddite John Booth in Huddersfield. This year, Professor Malcolm Chase of Leeds University will lecture on 'York Castle and its political prisoners: the Luddites in a broader context'. There are limited free tickets (registration required - see here).
FREE (registration required) Diamond Jubilee Lecture Theatre, Business School, University of Huddersfield, Queensgate, Huddersfield, HD1 3DH, 18.00 - 19.45 p.m.

Monday 18th May 2015:

Collective Bargaining by Riot - Holmfirth Film Festival
Young film-maker Alex Hopley has taken Eric Hobsbawm's phrase to describe the Swing Riots of the early 1800s to produce a really interesting film on the Luddites which shows that there was much more to them than merely smashing machines. Based on interviews with historians and neo-Luddites, the attempt to preserve the community, values and ideas in the face of technology and corporate greed is totally relevant to today. Plus - Huddersfield photographer Richard Littlewood will be talking about and exhibiting his photographs of the remaining textile mills involved in the Luddite battle and a talk by Alan Brooke, local historian and neo-Luddite, whose website Underground Histories deals with the Luddites.
FREE. Holmfirth Adult Education Centre, Huddersfield Road, Holmfirth, HD9 3AR. 7.30 p.m.

Saturday 23rd May 2015:

Automation and the Threat to Jobs: What Response from the Labour Movement?
Event to discuss how unions can respond to the threat of robotics and automation.
London. More details TBC.

Tuesday 23rd June 2015:

'Data Luddism' - Dan McQuillan
Dan McQuillan of the University of London presents a paper entitled 'Data Luddism' as part of the 'Resistance, Agency, Activism' strand at the 2015 Data Power Conference. The notion of Data Luddism acts as a historically-grounded lens through which to assess both the emergence of data as productive power and the significance of forms of resistance. Data Luddism asks how control, discrimination, and social sorting may lead to a broader reconfiguration of social relationships that parallel in scope and significance the shift from artisan to factory labour. These shifts include a consequential loss of agency by sections of the population and the establishment of unaccountable powers. Drawing on scholarship that reframes Luddism as an enacted critique of socio-technical consequences, I examine contemporary forms. At the same time I explore the absence of popular mobilisation in the face of negative data consequences, to ask - why there are no angry crowds outside Facebook data centers? Taking machinery as a central figure, Data Luddism anchors the consequences of data power in the materiality of technology. At the same time it motivates a reading of the technology in the light of broader social, economic and political conditions. The era of Luddism was the period of the Napoleonic Wars, an era also marked by harsh austerity, external conflict and apocalyptic social threats. To conclude, I will engage in speculative reading of history to ask what might have been possible if the Luddites had been in a position to hack the technology of their time, as a way to surface the real if not actual potential of a different kind of data power.
CONFERENCE FEES APPLY. The University of Sheffield, Western Bank, Sheffield, S10 2TN. 2.05 p.m.

Thursday 9th to Sunday 12th July 2015:

Breaking the Frame Gathering 2015
For full details about this event, see our dedicated page here, or the organisers website (link in title above)facebook event
Unstone Grange, Crow Lane, Unstone, Derbyshire, S18 4AL. Online booking here

Friday 25th September 2015:

Saint Ludd - Rochester Fringe Festival
Two hundred years ago, the hard-working people from several small villages in England stood up to demand a better life. This is their true story of riots, rebellion, greed and revenge, and of the saintly “holy fool,” Ned Ludd, who began it all. Performed in music, film and dramatic reading by the same team that successfully brought NOSFERATU BEMSHI! and BRENDAN! to the Fringe.
$6.00. Writers & Books, 740 University Avenue, Rochester, New York, NY 14607, USA. 8.00 p.m.

Sunday 28th February 2016:

Loughborough 'Luddite Walk' - Tony Jarram
A walk led by local historian Tony Jarram, looking back at the 'Loughborough Job' of 1816.
FREE. Meet at the steps of Charnwood Museum, Queens Park, Granby Street, Loughborough, Leicestershire, LE11 3DU. 10.00 a.m.

Tuesday 15th March 2016:

Smashing the Frames: the story of the Luddites in Arnold and Nottingham - Bob Massey
A talk for Leicestershire Industrial History Society
Braunstone West Community Hall, St. Mary's Avenue, Braunstone Lane, LE3 3FT. 7.30 p.m.

Saturday 2nd April 2016:

Shirley & the Luddite Movement - Australian Brontë Association
Dr Andrew Shields will explore the social, political and cultural history of Victorian Britain and examine how Charlotte Brontë used contemporary events as a background for her novel. Facebook event
$5.00 The Castlereagh Boutique Hotel, 169-171 Castlereagh Street, Sydney, Australia 2000, 10:30 a.m.

Thursday 21st April 2016:

Luddite Memorial Lecture Dr Robert Poole (UCLAN)
Huddersfield Local History Society and the University of Huddersfield History department present the third in a series of annual lectures focusing on aspects of the history of radicalism in the Huddersfield district.

As Cyril Pearce, Chair of Huddersfield Local History Society, explains: ‘The annual Luddite Memorial Lecture is an ideal opportunity for distinguished historians to share their work with a wider public and to contribute to our understanding of our own history. Understanding the Industrial Revolution and history of the turmoil of Britain's transformation into “the workshop of the world” is key to understanding the history of Huddersfield and the West Riding. Within that the Luddite and revolutionary outbursts of the early 19th Century which were particularly important in our area continue to attract a great deal of scholarly interest.’

The 2016 Luddite Memorial Lecture will be given by Dr Robert Poole, Guild Research Fellow and Reader in History at the University of Central Lancashire. Dr Poole has published on a wide variety of historical subjects although, perhaps, his best known book is Earthrise: How Man First Saw the Earth published in 2008. He has also lectured widely on the Lancashire witches trial of 1612. However, Dr Poole is just at home when talking about popular protest in the industrial revolution period. This has not only resulted in several publications but also appearances on TV and radio. His book, Peterloo: the English Uprising is due to be published in 2018.

In his Huddersfield lecture Dr Poole will be focusing on unrest here in West Yorkshire. Commenting on why the West Riding rebellions of June 1817 continue to arouse interest and debate today, he asks: ‘Were they the earliest attempt at working-class revolution, hopeless gestures by desperate people, or just a trap set by Oliver the (government) Spy?’

Dr Poole believes that this fascinating episode in Huddersfield’s history was part of a series of radical attempts to force parliamentary reform in 1816 and 1817: ‘It began with a constitutionalist mass petitioning campaign emanating from London, and proceeded through the Spa Fields meetings, the march of the Blanketeers and the Manchester rising to the last stand in Huddersfield and Pentrich (in Derbyshire)’.

The Luddite Memorial Lecture will be introduced by historian Professor Tim Thornton, the University’s deputy Vice-Chancellor, who welcomes the way in which this annual lecture series is continuing to develop. He says: ‘I'm very much looking forward to Dr Robert Poole's lecture on the rebellions of 1817; after the excellent inaugural Luddite lecture from Matthew Roberts back in 2014, and Malcolm Chase's highly thought-provoking contribution last year on political prisoners in York, Robert Poole's talk will I'm sure demonstrate that this important collaboration between the University and the Local History Society is going from strength to strength’.

FREE (book online here). The University of Huddersfield - Diamond Jubilee Lecture Theatre, University of Huddersfield Queensgate, Huddersfield HD1 3DH. 19.30 - 21.30 p.m.

Wednesday 27th April 2016:


Luddites' Nightmares - Richard Milward
Taking inspiration from the machine-breaking Luddites of the early 19th century, artist Richard Milward is producing a series of paintings which, in his words, ‘expose, exaggerate and ridicule the ways in which modern technology encroaches on – and distorts – everyday life’. A month-long loan to WCML of one of these paintings is marked by this event, when we are delighted to welcome three of the country’s most inventive young authors to read from their own work on themes surrounding our relationship with technology. Joe Stretch, novelist from Stockport who recently won the W Somerset Maugham Award for his book The Adult, will be reading, alongside London poet Salena Godden and Richard Milward himself. Facebook event.
FREE. Working Class Movement Library, 51 The Crescent, Salford, Lancashire, M5 4WX. 14.00 p.m.


Saturday 14th May 2016:

Luddites Day: Smash the Looms - Nottingham Contemporary
A session of performances and walking tours exploring Luddites’ histories in Nottingham. In collaboration with the Politicised Practice Research Group and Anarchist Research Group, Loughborough University. Book tickets online here.
FREE. Nottingham Contemporary, Weekday Cross, Nottingham, NG1 2GB. 11.30 - 14.30 p.m.


Friday 3rd June to end of July 2016:

Lacemakers & Luddites - Loughborough Libraries Local Studies Volunteers
An exhibition at Loughborough Library which runs until the end of July. More details TBC.
Venue: Loughborough Library.

Saturday 25th June 2016:

'Ludd Hub' @ Big Birthday Weekend Picnic in the Park
As part of Lougborough's 'Big Birthday Weekend Picnic in the Park', the 'Ludd Hub' stall will have displays on the 200th anniversary of the 'Loughborough Job' of 1816. The stall is run jointly by Loughborough Local Studies Volunteers & Loughborough University PHIR Department.
FREE. Queens Park, Loughborough. 12.00 p.m. - 17.00 p.m.

Breaking the Frame Women's Gathering: Women and the Politics of Digital Technologies - Breaking the Frame
This event will focus on the relationship between women and digital technologies, including topics such as online abuse and pornography, sex robots, raising children in the digital era, and much more.

Speakers include:

  *  Heather Brunskill-Evans on pornography and its impact
  *  Kathleen Richardson on sex robots
  *  Anonymous (due to online abuse) on harassment of women on the web
  *  More to be confirmed soon

Suggested donation £10 (but please give what you can if you cannot afford £10).  The daytime event will be followed by cheap and tasty food and drinks in the evening. This event is open to women only. All self-defined women welcome.  Please note that disabled access is limited at present, owing to difficulties with the Feminist Library’s landlords. Contact us for further details about this. Contact info@breakingtheframe.org.uk for details and to register, and see our website http://breakingtheframe.org.uk/women-digital-technologies/ to find out more about the event.
SUGGESTED DONATION £10. Feminist Library Meeting Room, 5 Westminster Bridge Road, London, SE1 7XW. 11.00 a.m. - 9.00 p.m.

Monday 4th July 2016:

Breaking the Frame Reading Group: Humans Need Not Apply - Breaking the Frame
We have a semi-regular reading group based in London and encourage anyone interested in these issues to come along and take part.  You don’t need any prior knowledge, you don’t need to be an activist and you don’t need to have read the material in full to come along and take part. (It can be helpful to let us know if you’re planning to come though.) We will be reading pp.4-6 of the introduction to Humans Need Not Apply, by Jerry Kaplan, which is about ‘work and wealth in the age of artificial intelligence’. We have uploaded the whole chapter for those who want read it here
FREE. LARC, 62 Fieldgate Street, London E1, 7.00 p.m. to 9.00 p.m. Nearest tube Whitechapel.

Friday 22nd July 2016:

Grunwick & Lucas Plan 40 Years On: Union Rights & Workers' Control - Lucas Plan 40th Anniversary Group
Screening of 'The Year of the Beaver' and 'The Lucas Plan', with discussion and brief talks by Kerria Box (Grunwick 40) and North London Solidarity Federation. 1976 was a high tide of workers’ struggle and the year it all began to change. Giving the lie to racist and sexist myths that Asian women were submissive and would work for a pittance, workers at the Grunwick plant in Willesden rallied the left behind their struggle for the right to join the union. At the Lucas Aerospace arms company, the Shops Stewards’ Combine Committee took the fight to the bosses, with their workers’ Alternative Plan for socially useful production. In 2016 we are still facing the fiction of ‘foreigners taking our jobs’. In the face of climate change and militarism, we again need industrial conversion, from fossil fuels and Trident to renewables, and to stop the bosses replacing our jobs with robots. Join us for 2 films and discussion, showing how workers’ rights and ideas are crucial to facing those challenges. Refreshments will be available for a donation. Contact info@breakingtheframe.org.uk for more information. Venue is wheelchair accessible. Facebook event.
FREE/Donation. LARC, 62 Fieldgate St, London E1. 7.00 p.m.

Monday 15th August:

Breaking the Frame Reading Group
The reading group is back! We will be reading the following essay by Stephen L. Talbott: ‘The Deceiving Virtues of Technology (From the cave of the Cyclops to Silicon Valley)’. A slightly shortened version of this essay is featured in the latest Dark Mountain book, called Technê. The Dark Mountain Project is a network of writers, artists and thinkers producing (amongst other things) regular anthologies of ‘uncivilised writing’ (“carefully-crafted 300-page hardback books which show case radical essays, fiction, non-fiction, poetry, art and various uncategorisable things”). Find out more at dark-mountain.net. Additional suggested readings from the book include the editorial, The Drawknife and the Drone, and the essay Planting Trees in the Anthropocene by Paul Kingsnorth. And if you have time for one more, Confessions of a Neo-Luddite: Interview with Chellis Glendinning by Tom Smith. Facebook event here
FREELARC, 62 Fieldgate Street, London E1 1ES. 7.00 p.m.

Friday 2nd to Sunday 4th September 2016:

Radical Technology Revisited (RT2.0), a Working Conference - Peter Harper & Godfrey Boyle

Is Progress an illusion?  Are catastrophic changes inevitable?  Is Technology the problem or the solution? What are the practical alternatives?  We were Luddites in the 70s. It seemed like uncontrolled technological innovation was driving us all mad. We thought about it, dreamed of how else it could be, tried to live out the alternatives, and endlessly wrote it up.  Such questions were posed 40 years ago in the pioneering book Radical Technology edited by Godfrey Boyle and Peter Harper, which set many hares running. The conference will revisit the questions and assess directions that alternative technology has taken. Contact peter@peterharper.org or visit http://www.radicaltechnology.org/.
£30 (full price) £15 (concessions) with FREE early bird tickets (book here). University of Bristol Students Union, 105 Queens Road, Bristol, BS8 1LN.

Saturday 26th November 2016:

Spa Fields Riots bicentenary guided walks - Clerkenwell & Islington Guides

Clerkenwell and Islington Guides have teamed up with the Islington Museum to commemorate the 200th anniversary of Islington’s historic Spa Field Riots with two free guided walks.

In 1815, poems and novels had celebrated the British victory at Waterloo; and its hero – Wellington was immortalised in cities, suburbs and streets. One year later 1816 became a year of revolution. In a war-impoverished Britain, Spa Fields (today one of Islington’s peaceful parks) became the scene of protest meetings involving riot and death.

In conjunction with the Commit Outrage display at the Islington Museum, which commemorates the 200th anniversary of the Spa Field Riots, Clerkenwell and Islington Guides are leading two free 1 hour walks around the Spa Fields area. The walks will describe the revolutionary events that occurred and the harsh reality of life at the time. Find out more about the colourful characters involved in the riots – Henry ‘Orator’ Hunt who always spoke wearing the imposing white top hat of purity and Arthur Thistlewood – the man who came within 24 hours of murdering the Prime Minister and his cabinet.

The walks will be led by Clerkenwell and Islington Guides Rob Smith and Philip Nelkon

FREE. Meet in foyer of Islington Museum, 245 St John St, London, EC1V 4NB. 11.00 a.m.

Saturday 26th November 2016:

Conference on the 40th Anniversary of the Lucas Plan

A one-day conference with leading speakers from trade union, left, environment and peace movements. 2016 is the 40th anniversary of the Lucas Plan, the pioneering effort by workers at the arms company Lucas Aerospace to do fight job losses by proposing alternative, socially useful applications of the company’s technology and their own skills.  We need this kind of change more urgently today than ever before. The threats we face – including militarism, climate chaos and the destruction of jobs by automation – can all be met if we build on these achievements and create new plans for a socially just transition to a sustainable society.

You can be part of this. At the conference you can:

  *  Hear first-hand stories of successes and challenges – from the shop stewards who played key roles in the original Lucas Plan
  *  Discuss the way forward with leading figures in the trade union, left, peace and environment movements
  *  Take part in workshops to tackle issues that are close to you – from local community plans, to union action on industrial conversion and much more.

The conference has been organised by former members of the Lucas Aerospace Combine Committee, Campaign Against Arms Trade, Breaking the Frame, PCS, UCU, Red Pepper, Scientists for Global Responsibility, Million Climate Jobs Campaign and the Green Party.

Visit www.lucasplan.org.uk to find out more or email info@breakingtheframe.org.uk to be kept informed about the conference.

Tickets can be booked online here.

£5.00 - £20.00. BVSC, 138 Digbeth, Birmingham, B5 6DR. 9.00 a.m. - 5.00 p.m.

Saturday 3rd December 2016:

Spa Fields Riots bicentenary guided walks - Clerkenwell & Islington Guides
Clerkenwell and Islington Guides have teamed up with the Islington Museum to commemorate the 200th anniversary of Islington’s historic Spa Field Riots with two free guided walks.

In 1815, poems and novels had celebrated the British victory at Waterloo; and its hero – Wellington was immortalised in cities, suburbs and streets. One year later 1816 became a year of revolution. In a war-impoverished Britain, Spa Fields (today one of Islington’s peaceful parks) became the scene of protest meetings involving riot and death.

In conjunction with the Commit Outrage display at the Islington Museum, which commemorates the 200th anniversary of the Spa Field Riots, Clerkenwell and Islington Guides are leading two free 1 hour walks around the Spa Fields area. The walks will describe the revolutionary events that occurred and the harsh reality of life at the time. Find out more about the colourful characters involved in the riots – Henry ‘Orator’ Hunt who always spoke wearing the imposing white top hat of purity and Arthur Thistlewood – the man who came within 24 hours of murdering the Prime Minister and his cabinet.

The walks will be led by Clerkenwell and Islington Guides Rob Smith and Philip Nelkon

FREE. Meet in foyer of Islington Museum, 245 St John St, London, EC1V 4NB. 11.00 a.m.