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Salford Tories, the gift that keeps on giving

Submitted by on July 11, 2014 – 2:11 pmNo Comment

We reported in May the bizarre tale of Salford Tories’ attack on the Working Class Movement Library, the amazing collection which they are lucky enough to have on their patch.  News – and indeed incredulity and ridicule – spread fast, particularly when a Tory councillor was quoted as saying of WCML that ‘you can’t borrow books like you can at an ordinary library’…

The good news is that the publicity for the Library has been fantastic, with testimonials and goodwill aplenty particularly in the light of an article in The Observer (full version on the leccy Lung here).   Now we spot an article on the Library blog which tells of another lovely unforeseen outcome of an assault which does appear to have been entirely counter-productive for Tories who don’t seem to understand even the concept of a reference library (or, as some of the comments on the Observer Web site pointed out, a library that is open…):

‘A lovely treasure has come our way, thanks to Sally Swift who read the recent article about us in The Observer and reckoned we sounded like we’d provide a good home for an autograph book that’s been in her family since the 1920s.   Her grandparents Melanie and William Moody were keen long-term members of the Salisbury Labour Party and Co-operative Movement, and Melanie compiled the autograph book with signatures mostly taken from letters addressed to the Moodys in relation to Labour Party matters.

The names are a veritable Who’s Who of the early 20th century Labour Party – George LansburyEllen Wilkinson, Ramsay MacDonaldMargaret Bondfield,  A.A. Purcell the subject of Kevin Morgan’s new book and recent talk at the Library, and many more.


Even Oswald Mosley makes an appearance, from the time when he was a Labour Party member and then MP.

What a wonderful addition to our collection – and what a great by-product of the Observer article (which also resulted in a highly welcome £350 in Paypal donations to the Library).

Like everything else in the Library the autograph book is now available for everyone to come and have a look at. Our opening times for drop-in visitors remain Wednesdays to Fridays 1-5pm’.


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