Reflections on Rainbow Plaques Day

Guppys with its celebratory Rainbow Plaque

Guppys with its celebratory Rainbow Plaque

Kit Heyam’s blog post on LGBT History Month has appeared on Notches:(re)marks on the History of sexuality).

Kit says: ‘The appearance of the plaques was important: our design mirrored the iconic blue roundel, with all its legitimating potential, but also visibly signalled the stories’ queerness.’

You can follow our route and the plaques made and ceremoniously stuck up on historypin.

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Then and Now image of Little Black Street, removed to create Duncombe Place and a clear view of the Minister. Image created by Richard and Lianne Brigham, York Past and Present.

Then and Now image of Little Black Street, removed to create Duncombe Place and a clear view of the Minister. Image created by Richard and Lianne Brigham, York Past and Present.


What has heritage ever done for us? (…and what would we like heritage to do for York?):
Community visions for the future of York’s heritage

20th June 2015
1.30 – 4.30pm
Friargate Meeting House

Book free tickets.

We invite anyone interested in York’s future to join us to explore what ‘heritage’ might have to do with it.

York is a city known for its heritage.
York also faces certain challenges: for example housing, wages and making the city centre an affordable and easy place to spend time during the day and at night.

How can we think about York’s heritage in ways which help us address these challenges?
How might York’s heritage become a resource that helps us live well together?

We’ll hear from lots of different people about their visions for the future of York’s heritage.

We’ll also work together to make plans. What do you know about York’s history – or the challenges the city faces today – and how can you contribute?

Part of the ‘How should decisions about heritage be made?’ project and the Arts and Humanities Research Council’s Connected Communities Festival.

York’s LGBT History: Write your own rainbow plaque

Lots of events throughout February. See: http://yorklgbthistory.org.uk/

Lots of events throughout February. See: http://yorklgbthistory.org.uk/


28th February
1-4pm
Meet at 1pm at Friends Meeting House

In York there are over seventy blue plaques around York commemorating famous people or events.

To celebrate York LGBT History Month 2015, we invite you to create your own rainbow plaque telling the LGBT history of our city. Together we’ll mark places of personal significance and political importance, highlighting the diverse stories that run through York’s streets. We’ll then distribute (the safe and easily removable) cardboard plaques around the city, recording the stories and photographing them for an archive of the day.

There are two options for sharing your histories, stories and memories:
1) Send us your plaque entries in advance and we’ll get them printed out on our cardboard rainbow plaques to be ceremoniously unveiled on the day. Deadline for this is 22nd February 2014. Send ideas to yorkalternativehistory@gmail.com

2) Drop in during the afternoon to customize one of the rainbow plaques.

The event is funded by the Arts & Humanities Research Council’s ‘Connected Communities’ programme via a research project ‘How should decisions about heritage be made?’

Organised by: York’s Alternative History and the York:Living With History project

Find out what York: A Walk on the Wild Side is really about

Free PDF of York: A Walk on the Wild Side

The front cover of Paul Furness' new pamphlet

The front cover of Paul Furness’ new pamphlet

Following a wide range of press coverage this week in York Press and BBC Radio York – and some misunderstandings of the aims and content of Paul’s York: A Walk on the Wild Side book – we’ve decided the best thing is to make available freely the PDF. So if you’re interested in finding out what Paul’s really saying, then read away!

Some of the debate has been fair enough. Paul’s argument is that York’s official representations haven’t always celebrated and brought to life the richer and less marketable histories. And we’re not scared of the debate, after all the point of York’s Alternative History has always been to do cultural politics; to tell lots of different stories about the city’s past so that the future can be ours for the making. It’s been great to see that Paul’s work has done that job so well.

Beautifully designed and printed hard copies also still available. Either pay via cheque or pay pal.

By PayPal: Add you address via PayPal to be posted the book. We can only sell the book for £5 each over the website (not for the multiple copies deal below).
Buy Now Button

By Post: Price £5 incl. p. and p. for single copies; £9 for 2; £12 for 3. Please send cheques, payable to ‘York Workshops’ (WOWS), to York Workshops, 8 Galtres Grove, York, YO30 8RG

York: A Walk on the Wild Side – buy your copy now

The front cover of Paul Furness' new pamphlet

The front cover of Paul Furness’ new pamphlet

York’s Alternative History are very proud to launch Paul Furness’ York: A Walk on the Wild Side based on walks Paul has run over the past couple of years. For a taster see this Guardian Northern blog.

In the author’s words:

Even Guy Fawkes has to shout to get himself heard in York and, to add insult to injury, he’s not in this little book either – which makes the point that what is left out of York’s rich history may be more relevant than what gets included in the “official version” that brands this tourist town a must visit experience. Within these pages you’ll find the story of the York “they” don’t want to tell you about – because it doesn’t fit the heritage image which has been invented for the express purpose of shopping! What you are about to read is none of that. Here are tales of riot, rebellion and revolution, music, poets, football and beer along with fights for women’s rights and Gay Liberation – just the story of another Friday night in York in fact!

Price £5 incl. p. and p. for single copies; £9 for 2; £12 for 3. Please send cheques, payable to ‘York Workshops’ (WOWS), to York Workshops, 8 Galtres Grove, York, YO30 8RG

York: Walk On The Wild Side is supported by York’s Alternative History and the University of Leeds and is supported by the Arts and Humanities Research Council, through a research project ‘How should decisions about heritage be made?’ / York: Living with History project.

York Turned Upside Down!: Looking forward to communities, history and heritage in 2015 and the launch of Paul Furness’ pamphlet York, A Walk on the Wild Side: Tales of Riots, Rebellion and Revolution

We are now full booked up for this event. if you’d like to be on a waiting list for any ticket returns or if you’d like to buy a copy of York: A Walk on the Wilde Side (£5), then contact yorklivingwithhistory@gmail.com

The front cover of Paul Furness' new pamphlet

The front cover of Paul Furness’ new pamphlet

17th December 2014
6-8pm
State Room, Mansion House
St Helen’s Square

Join us in the state room at the Mansion House to celebrate 2014’s amazing community history and heritage projects and to look ahead to what’s coming up in 2015.

Book a free place

The World Turned Upside Down: Radical Ideas During the English Revolution, by York-born Christopher Hill, is one of the most famous of a wave of radical histories written in the late 20th century – all of which place the emphasis not on kings and elites but on history from the perspective of the people, ‘from below’. This event aims to celebrate and inspire histories of York not-often told and histories told by people who live here.

As part of the event we will also be launching York: A Walk on the Wild Side: Tales of Riots, Rebellion and Revolution by Paul Furness – in which Christopher Hill’s York story is told. Alongside Paul a range of different people and projects will do a 3 minute turn to get you excited and inspired for 2015. We will plan this a bit like a history-version of an open mike night…so if you have something you want to shout about let us know!

Speakers will include:

Richard Brigham and Lianne Brigham, ‘York Past and Present’

John Oxley (City of York Council, City Archaeologist) ‘York, a community of investigators: Cooperation and collaborations”

Helen Graham (University of Leeds) ‘York: Living with History research project’

Paul Furness, ‘Introducing…York: A Walk on the Wild Side: Tales of Riots, Rebellion and Revolution

This event is organized by York’s Alternative History and the University of Leeds and is supported by the Arts and Humanities Research Council, through a research project ‘How should decisions about heritage be made?’ / York: Living with History project.