Protest banners at the People’s History Museum

Activities / Blogroll

The People’s History Museum in Manchester, England, is the UK’s national centre for the collection, interpretation and study of material relating to the history of working people in the UK and it has a fabulous collection of protest banners from the last 150 years. For any Union members considering how to activate support for radical action in fashion, banner making might be the perfect place to start… It is also an activity that can potentially be combined with a Local Assembly and with the upswing in marches and school strikes, there may be plenty of opportunities to take it onto the streets or certainly adorn our studios, offices and classrooms.

The protest banners at the People’s History Museum combine fabric, stitch, paint, iron-on interfacing, fringe (lots of fringe). The base cloth varies from silk to polyester and cotton. Some are huge, some small…

Amalgamated Society of Engineers, 1919.
Blue silk, yellow silk border, oil paint, yellow wool fringe

Bread, Work and Freedom, 1980.
Cotton and acrylic paint

Draughtsmen’s Association
Blue cotton, red silk, bronze stitching and fringe

Revive Women, 2019
White polyester, felt design stitched.

Colchester apartheid group, 1960.
Black cotton, lettering and design in iron-on polyester interfacing

Society of Woodworkers, 1917.
Green silk, red silk border, oil paint.

Redhill Women’s Co-operative, around 1930.
Black cotton, painted design, yellow silk fringe

Professional Footballers’ Association.
Polyester, painted design.