In Manchester, Tandem Theatre partnered with Trinity House Community Resource Centre to work with ‘Motivation’, a satellite youth group based at Ladybarn Community Centre together with ‘Girl Talk’, their young women’s group based in Rusholme.
Both groups consist of weekly sessions to provide guidance and advice, encourage learning and gaining of skills, building confidence and self-esteem. The programme aims to support young people with a wide range of educational and developmental needs, empower young people and encourage community involvement. The Game Changers project was able to compliment this provision delivering engaging activities during these drop-in sessions. The young women did brilliantly and the youth workers were very impressed with their progress, particularly their enthusiasm for the procession re-enactment.
“The group took part in a Home Office video project and developed and presented ideas on body image and bullying – the girl who presented this wouldn’t have had the confidence to speak out without Gamechangers.” Aqeel Burton, Trinity House Community Resource Centre Manager.
LEARNING FROM THE PAST
The group received guided tours at Archives +, Manchester Central Library, where they handled the women’s suffrage collection and The People’s History Museum to see the wider context of women’s suffrage. They also received a guided tour of Manchester Art Gallery that was famously vandalised by suffragettes in April 1913.
RECREATING THE PAST
In the arts and crafts workshops the group recreated suffragist materials such as a protest banner, rosettes, sashes, leaflets, booklets and badges. For more information on how suffragists used these materials click here.
The group researched local suffragist figure Hannah Mitchell and decorated a giant jigsaw piece in the shape of the Manchester borough with pictures of her and images associated with the suffragist movement.
For more information about Hannah Mitchell click here.
The group recreated the 1908 Manchester Women’s Suffrage Demonstration 1908 by marching down Lark Hill Place (a replica Victorian street at Salford Museum and Art Gallery) in costume wearing their sashes and displaying their banner.
For International Women’s Day the group displayed all their fantastic work at Manchester Art Gallery and their lead artist ran suffragist themed making activities throughout the day.
APPLYING THE PAST TO TODAY
The group then applied what they had learnt about the suffragist campaign methods and applied it to today. Focusing on current issues the group felt most impacted them; they developed their own campaign through taking part in a series of workshops such as debating, marketing, music, spoken word, corporate sponsorship and T-shirt printing.
For more information about these methods of campaigning click here.
These set of sessions also provided content for the groups to share at the recreation of the 1912 Women’s Suffrage Bazaar.
ASSOCIATE LEAD ARTIST - Nerissa Cargill-Thompson
Designer, maker and facilitator with over 20 years experience of professional and community practice. Member of Prism Contemporary Textiles Collective, Society of Embroidered Work, Precious Collective and Society of British Theatre Design.