Stu­art walked in the foot­steps of his­tory

Middleton Guardian - - WHAT’S ON WITH ALL ACROSS THE ARTS - STEVE COOKE STEVE COOKE

WELLKNOWN ra­dio DJ and tele­vi­sion pre­sen­ter, cur­rently host­ing his af­ter­noon show, along­side Mark Rad­cliffe, and his own show Freak Zone on BBC Ra­dio 6 Mu­sic, Stu­art Ma­conie is the lat­est ad­di­tion to this year’s Lit­er­a­ture and Ideas Fes­ti­val.

Stu­art, as a jour­nal­ist, has writ­ten for such di­verse pub­li­ca­tions as Q Mag­a­zine, ELLE, The Times, The Guardian, Mojo and Coun­try Walk­ing and was an as­sis­tant ed­i­tor for the NME.

He has writ­ten sev­eral best-sell­ing and crit­i­cally­ac­claimed books, in­clud­ing the au­to­bi­o­graph­i­cal Cider With Road­ies and The Pie at Night: In Search of the North at Play.

Stu­art also wrote and pre­sented the ma­jor BBC Ra­dio 2 se­ries and ac­com­pa­ny­ing book The Peo­ple’s Songs.

At ‘A (short) Evening with Stu­art Ma­conie’ he will be shar­ing sto­ries and in­sights from his re­cent re­trac­ing of the fa­mous Jar­row March, as ex­plored in his lat­est book Long Road from Jar­row: A Jour­ney Through Bri­tain Then and Now.

He visits the great cities as well as the sleepy ham­lets, quiet lanes and roar­ing mo­tor­ways.

He meets those with sto­ries to tell and whose voices build a funny, com­plex and en­ter­tain­ing tale of Bri­tain, then and now.

He said: “Three and half weeks. Three hun­dred miles.

“I saw roar­ing ar­te­rial high­way and silent lanes, can­dlelit cathe­drals and an­gry men in bad pubs.

“The Bri­tain of 1936 was a land of beef paste sand­wiches and drill halls.

“Now we are a na­tion of va­p­ing and nail salons, pulled pork and salted caramel.”

In the au­tumn of 1936, some 200 men from the Ty­ne­side town of Jar­row marched 300 miles to Lon­don in protest against the de­struc­tion of their towns and in­dus­tries.

Pre­cisely 80 years on, Stu­art walked from north to south re­trac­ing their route.

Trav­el­ling down the coun­try’s spine, he moved through a land that is, in some ways, very much the same as the Eng­land of the ‘30s with its po­lit­i­cal tur­bu­lence, aus­ter­ity, north/south di­vide, food banks and foot­ball ma­nia. Yet in other ways, it is com­pletely un­recog­nis­able.

He vis­ited the great cities as well as the sleepy ham­lets, meet­ing those with sto­ries to tell and whose voices build a funny, com­plex and en­ter­tain­ing tale of Bri­tain, then and now.

Af­ter dis­cussing Long Road from Jar­row, Stu­art will be pleased to an­swer ques­tions on any of his books, ra­dio or TV work. SINCE 1894, the Castle­ton Lit­er­ary and Sci­en­tific So­ci­ety has pre­sented meet­ings and lec­tures main­tain­ing the early con­sti­tu­tion: ‘The ob­ject shall be to ar­range lec­tures, es­says and dis­cus­sions that will en­able mem­bers to be in touch with mod­ern thought and crit­i­cism in all branches of gen­eral cul­ture and sci­en­tific re­search.’

The so­ci­ety’s new pro­gramme cer­tainly main­tains that ob­jec­tive with a var­ied range of top­ics, given by ex­pert speak­ers, in­clud­ing in­ter­na­tional and lo­cal travel sto­ries, in­dus­trial his­tory, the nat­u­ral world, po­etry and lit­er­a­ture.

Com­ing in Oc­to­ber:

– The new sea­son is opened by Dr David Shreeve, talk­ing about his re­cent trav­els along the for­mer Iron Cur­tain be­tween east and west Ger­many.

– Cot­to­nop­o­lis by Eliz­a­beth Sib­ber­ing – known as Sibby, a well-known Manch­ester tour-guide – re­turns and will de­scribe the growth of Manch­ester in the In­dus­trial Rev­o­lu­tion, when it be­came the world’s most in­flu­en­tial city in the Global Cot­ton Trade.

– The So­ci­ety will at­tend the Rochdale Lit­er­a­ture and Ideas Fes­ti­val event All Across the Arts event from 5pm to 7pm at The Vibe, 34 Drake Street.

From Chem­i­cal Works to Coun­try Park by Ju­dith Atkin­son.

Castle­ton Lit­er­ary and Sci­en­tific So­ci­ety is based at Castle­ton Com­mu­nity Cen­tre, Manch­ester Road, Castle­ton, Rochdale OL11 3AF

Visit: https:// castle­ton­l­i­tand­sci.webs. com for more de­tails

Well-known ra­dio DJ and tele­vi­sion pre­sen­ter Stu­art Ma­conie will be speak­ing at the Rochdale Lit­er­a­ture and Ideas Fes­ti­val

Eliz­a­beth Sib­ber­ing - known as Sibby, a well-known Manch­ester tour-guide

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