The first of the gang to die

A big thank you to the blogger at Occupied Country. This made my day, cheers.

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Angels with Manky Faces

Tickets for Angels with Manky Faces – MaD Theatre Company’s new production inspired by The Gangs of Manchester – are now on sale. There will be five performances at the Library Theatre, Manchester, on 19-22 August. These include a matinee on Saturday 22nd. The production contains strong language and, in the words of the script-writers Rob Lees and Jill Hughes, is “not for the easily offended.” You have been warned! You can book tickets here.

There will be an additional performance at the Unity Theatre in Liverpool, on 23 July.

Inside Out

The Gangs of Manchester is to be featured on BBC1 on Wednesday 18 February in the North-West edition of Inside Out.

Presenter Nigel Pivaro talks to author Andy Davies about the research that formed the basis of the book. Duncan Broady of Greater Manchester Police Museum describes the difficulties faced by police officers in attempting to quell scuttling affrays, and Leslie Holmes of Salford Lads’ and Girls’ Club discusses the role of the early lads’ clubs in combatting street violence.

The programme will include excerpts from films by Paul Cliff depicting scuttles in Angel Meadow. Appearing in the films are members of the MaD Theatre Company and junior supporters of FC United of Manchester. The final versions of these films will be shown in Angels with Manky Faces. The actors also appear in two historical reconstructions filmed by the BBC.

Gangs of Manchester on Radio 4

Click here to listen to a discussion of The Gangs of Manchester on “Thinking Allowed” on BBC Radio 4, hosted by Laurie Taylor.

Thinking Allowed

The Gangs of Manchester is the subject of a special edition of Thinking Allowed to be broadcast on New Year’s Eve at 4 p.m. on BBC Radio 4.
Hosted by Laurie Taylor, Thinking Allowed offers a weekly review of social research. Recent programmes covered topics such as the “cocaine girls” of 1920s London and the relationship between sexual repression and social progress.
For the New Year’s Eve edition, Andrew Davies is joined by Geoff Pearson of Goldsmiths College, University of London (author of the acclaimed Hooligan: a history of respectable fears) and Tara Young of London Metropolitan University, an expert on youth in present-day London.

Book signing at Borders, Manchester Fort, and some plans for 2009

One more book signing has been arranged: at Borders, Manchester Fort (Cheetham Hill) on Sunday 21 December from 11.00 till 1.00.

More events are in the pipeline for 2009. These include a reading from the book in Strangeways (HM Prison, Manchester) and an illustrated talk at the Manchester Histories festival, to be held at Manchester Town Hall.

Work on the play, Angels with Manky Faces, is well underway: the first costumes will soon be ready, songs are being recorded, and locations have been scouted for the scenes to be filmed. One of the gang scenes is to be filmed on “the flags” in Angel Meadow, the site of some of the incidents described in the early chapters of The Gangs of Manchester.

Let them eat cake?

Scuttler cakes

Scuttler cakes

There has been plenty of discussion of the Gangs of Manchester on the various Manchester football message boards, not least on Blue Moon (thanks, Ric) and Red Issue. An extract has already appeared in United We Stand, and hopefully the King of the Kippax will be following suit.
On Saturday, I was invited to speak at a pre-match social at FC United of Manchester, ahead of the game against Hednesford Town. It was quite a do: the turns included a singer-songwriter, a poet, and the Halle choir.
These fantastic Scuttler cakes were sold in aid of club funds, and a new flag was on display courtesy of FCUM followers Voxra and Mike Duff. It reads:
ANGEL MEADOW
SCUTTLERS
FC UNITED

Thanks to Andy Barker for the photo.

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