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Soldier boy BS: 200th Anniversary of 'Luddites' in 2012 (25) BS: 200th Anniversary of 'Luddites' in 2012 03 Sep 11

Next year marks the 200th anniversary of the Luddite movement and revolt against the advent of the shearing frames in 1812.

This was when skilled croppers who had served a 7 year apprenticeship to learn their trade were suddenly challenged by the new industrial revolution and the invention of the Shearing Frame that could do the job of 10 skilled croppers.

Many croppers feared they would never work again and unemployment at that time meant certain poverty and starvation!
So they turned to war to smash up the new machines.

Much of the Luddite uprising occured in the Colne Valley near Huddersfield where I live and the main protagonists came from this area and were involved in the murder of William Horsfall, a wealthy mill owner from Marsden. For which they would be hanged (and dissected!)at york.

I have recently done lots of research about this and have written a short play about the Luddites who were the key players in all the action in my Colne Valley and was wondering:

* What else is planned in 2012 to mark/celebrate the Luddite revolution so things can be co-ordinated and so we can work together to mark this important landmark.

* What further information and reference can you point me to about the Luddite revolution and these times that could perhaps lead me to write a much longer play to celebrate the Luddites next year?

Any further information and collaboration would be very welcome indeed!

Many thanks.


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