Saddleworth urged to remember tragic events of Peterloo Massacre

A SADDLEWORTH resident has joined the calls for recognition of the part played by Saddleworth participants before and during the Peterloo massacre.

This year marks the 200th anniversary of the tragic events in St Peter’s Field, Manchester when 15 people died and more than 500 were injured.

Edmund and William Dawson from Saddleworth were killed by sabre wielding cavalry who charged to disperse the estimated crowd of about 80,000.

John Knight, born on the Mossley-Saddleworth border in 1762, was on the platform at Peterloo and later jailed for attending an unlawful meeting in Burnley, Lancashire.

A campaign to recognise Knight’s work as a political reformer has been launched by Springhead man John Fletcher.

A blue plaque is expected to be placed near to Knight’s place of birth by Mossley Town Team with backing from the Town Council.

Now Saddleworth Parish Council has been contacted to also commemorate Peterloo at Uppermill Civic Hall.

Part of a letter, signed DS, read: “I was in the People’s History Museum and I was reading the part about who the people who died were. I saw that two of them were from Saddleworth.

“I just found it pretty mad that I didn’t know about that and I thought it would be a good idea to have something so people wouldn’t forget about what they had to do to get representation we have now.

“It’s an important part of history. If a few people read it when they go and vote then they will remember what local people from the past had to get that.”

Parish Council chairman, Cllr Rob Knotts, said: “I fully endorse what this person is seeking but the ground is covered to a degree by Saddleworth Museum.

“My suggestion is we pass this idea over to the museum and put the responsibility in their shoes.”

• Peterloo is the subject of a headline exhibition at the People’s History Museum in Manchester from March 23, 2019 to February 23, 2020.

Entitled Disrupt? Peterloo and Protest, the exhibition will feature original artefacts from the massacre displayed together for the first time. The exhibition is part of PHM’s year long programme exploring the past, present and future of protest.

One Reply to “Saddleworth urged to remember tragic events of Peterloo Massacre”

  1. There were not two Dawson’s from Saddleworth sabred at Peterloo. Only Edmund Dawson of Saddleworth was one of the 18 dead. The information you have published is incorrect.

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