Marie Curie (DVD). Made in 1977 and starring Jane Lapotaire this is a fascinating account of a pioneering female scientist. Marie was Polish, had to work as a governness to pay for her own and her sister’s education, so that they could train as scientists, and spent most of her life in exile in France. Her research led to the discovery of radium and she won two Nobel Prizes for Physics and Chemistry. What I really liked in this series was the way Marie was portrayed, as a serious woman and scientist, not dolled up or over styled as is the norm in modern representations of famous women. It is an inspiring story and extremely well made.
…..Doctor Who and the Communist; the Career of Malcolm Hulke. It is probably one of the most popular and longest running television series but this is an interesting aspect to its history. Hulke wrote 54 episodes for Dr.Who from 1967 and 74. He was also a member of the Communist Party, involved in setting up the trade union for writers, the Writers Guild and worked for Unity Theatre. Hulke was a prolific writer for television, radio and the cinema. He wrote for series as diverse as the Avengers and Crossroads. Find out more in this fascinating pamphlet only £4!! See
.. about the Spanish community in Manchester at this event which will discuss the great political changes going on in their country and its effect on the Spanish community in Manchester. See their film at
….Ancoats Dispensary….it was Ancoats Hospital, known to local children, like me, as the “butchers”. A hospital that also served the local industry in the east side of Manchester. It closed down in the 80s. In 2012 the remaining Grade 11 listed building that was once part of Ancoats Hospital was threatened with demolition. A group of people decided to stop this happening and the campaign Fight to Save the Dispensary was born. The campaigners say; “This campaign has been about much more than a building. The Dispensary represents the significant loss of social agencies that once existed in an area when pre NHS, health care, social care and community were so badly needed”. If you want to find out more see as well as the crowdfunding site see
…..Sisters with Mourning Hearts…a talk by Alison Ronan on 22 January at 6pm. Free. In 1915 a group of Manchester women signed an open letter to the women of Germany and Austria sending their solemn greetings and declaring that they wished for peace. They received warm and heartfelt thanks from the German and Austrian women. The letter is an important part of the international women’s movement for peace. Alison will tell the story of this important and forgotten aspect of the First World War. The letter is held by Manchester Central Library. A copy of the document and an interactive display telling the story of the women who signed it will be on display in Archives+. Further info see