Working Class Movement Library

March 2001 e-bulletin


The A.G.M. of the Friends of the Library was held on Sunday 25th of February in the Annexe. This was the first event held in the hall since Hazel Blear's colleagues painstakingly (and painfully) cleaned and painted the hall. Friends were delighted to be able to use the Annexe once again and a very happy atmosphere was generated.

The Chairman assured the Friends that negotiations with Salford City Council were still proceeding regarding accommodation in Jubilee House and that a full report would be given when discussions were concluded. He announced that the postponed unveiling of the plaque to Ewan Mac Coll would be performed by Peggy Seeger on Sunday 23rd September, 2001.

The Treasurer presented a healthy Balance Sheet but pointed out that some of the money was donated for specific purposes such as shelving. He stressed the need for the Friends to use Gift Aid and thanked the generous Friends who had responded to invitations to send money to the Library instead of flowers in accordance with the wishes of loyal supporters.

The Secretary drew attention to the latest Library Bulletin and thanked the Editors' for their work.

The Librarian presented a suplimentary report adding to that already printed in the Bulletin. He stressed the growing problems of storage space, thanked the many volunteers whose work greatly enhances the use of the Library. He noted several valuable book requests and reported that the Thomas Paine Society had agreed to donate £1,000 towards renovating and repairing books in the extensive Paine Collection.

After the election of Officers and Committee for 2001 and a welcome cup of tea, Peter Carter presented a lively and heartwarming biographical sketch of Will Thorne and the development of the Gas Worker's Union. He was assisted by Joan Carter and Dennis Maginn who punctuated his talk with approriate readings and musical interventions. It was a thoroughly enjoyable way to end the afternoon.


On Wednesday 28th February, representatives of the Library met with the North West Museums Service and Salford City Council to consider the Library's future. We are ever appreciative of the support given by our partner, Salford City Council but are equally aware of the need to broaden our sponsorship base.

The N.W.M.S. officers may be able to help us to conduct the necessary examination of the role we play as a Library, archive and museum and the best way to gain the financial recognition we need to ensure continuity for our future.

There will be a special meeting of the Trustees in April to consider the suggestions that the M.W.M.S. have put to us. Recipients of this newsletter will be kept informed of all progress.


Three weeks ago The Librarian and Library Assistant went down to Stoke-on-Trent and collected 120+ boxes of books and materials belonging to Dave Goodman a life-long Communist, International Brigader and Pensioner activist who lectured and was the Principal at the Wedgewood Memorial College in Staffordshire.

The collection is gradually being sorted through and will be added to the Library in due course. Many thanks to his son-in-law who kindly carried out Dave's bequest so painstakingly as to make the collection and transportation of the collection so much easier for us.


The Trustees with the aid of work carried out by a recent helper at the Library will be considering an Acquisitions Policy. The Library receives offers of material on a weekly basis and space is increasingly hard to find. The Library will not turn away material on the basis of lack of space but equally must clearly set out what materials it wants and those it does not. We will keep you informed of developments.


There has been again an interesting number of studies taking place in the library over the last 4 weeks. One person has been looking at 'Next Steps' the journal of the Revolutionary Communist Party, these split from the SWP in the 1960's. We have had students looking at the Irish in Britain, Education and the working classes, and the role of 'New' Labour whether or not it is a socialist party.


Many thanks are due to Jeanette Martin and Mr Bird of the National Museum of Labour History for their collecting of the 'Tribune' from London and holding for us to collect.

You can become a Friend of the Library by sending a cheque or Postal Order
To: 'Friends of the Working Class Movement Library' £5 waged / £2 unwaged
and sending it to: WCML, 51 The Crescent, Salford, M5 4WX.
Other ways to contact us; Telephone 0161 736 3601, Fax 0161 737 4115
Email us at:

Posted: 6 March 2001