Watch…Sapphire (DVD,1959) At the beginning of the film a young woman is found murdered on Hampstead Heath. She is a music student and has a boyfriend who is training to be an architect. But it is not as simple as that; the woman, Sapphire, is of mixed race and in the search for her murder we go on a journey through the lives and experiences of black people in London in the 50s. Few films, even nowadays, show how racist some people can be, but in this film we hear and see the bigoted attitude to black people from the police investigating the murder, to the landladies of the places where she lived, and the family she was going to join. Interestingly the worst racism comes from the middle classes, because Sapphire hid her ethnicity, so when she did come out as mixed race, they were the most vicious. The film shows the reasons why she would choose to play “white” as the police go searching her killer in Notting Hill. We see the wretched housing conditions of the black community and the racist attacks they face on the street. Johnny Dankworth wrote and performed the music in the film and it gives it a really cool edge. Highly recommended. See clip
Find out about..the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership(TTIP) a trade agreement that locks this country into a nightmare of control by big business. At this meeting BBC film-maker and investigative journalist David Malone will outline in fascinating detail why these little discussed agreements could be so hugely important to the corporate take-over of everything. At the Friends Meeting House, 6 Mount Street, M2 5NS, at 7 pm, on Thursday 12 June. Organised by the Manchester Green Party. Further info see
Protest… at the cuts to the legal aid service…Save justice!… Save legal aid! Magna Carta Day protest in Manchester 16 June at 1pm. Meet outside the Magistrate’s Court (off Deansgate, behind John Rylands Library)
Activists from Access To Advice and Justice Alliance North will be outside the Magistrate’s Court with leaflets and Justice Alliance petitions. Further info see
Go to a meeting… No Fracking! No Nuclear! Demand a Cleaner
Greener Future .Thursday 19th June at 7.30pm, St Michael’s Church, Liverpool Road, Eccles. speakers: Dr Ian Fairlie, Kate Hudson (CND) and a member of the anti fracking campaign group (Part of the Barton Moss anti-fracking organising/meeting hub). The meeting has been organised by GM&D CND, Northern Gas Gala, SERA and Glossop Peace Group.
Listen to…Victorian ballad singer Jennifer Reid at Clayton Hall in Clayton Hall Park on Saturday 21 June. On this open day they celebrate all things Victorian. Located in one of the poor areas of Manchester, the Hall has been taken over by volunteers who have refurbished the hall and park and regularly invite in local people and children to share their memories .Further info see
Visit…Gallery Oldham..and their exhibition of Modern Sculpture. Included in the exhibition are works by Elisabeth Frink, Jacob Epstein and Arthur Dooley as well as newer work in ceramic, leaf and knitted fabric. GO is one of the most interesting galleries in the northwest: it is easy to get to on the tram, has a lovely cafe and wonderful views across the Pennines. In these dark days of public sector cuts it needs our support. Further info see