Talk: Kennington and 1848, Year of Revolution

Author/publication: Malcolm Chase / Kennington Chartist Project Date:
April 28th 2018
Our Archive Ref: KCP0012/AUD/2018



The first in a series of talks given in St Mark’s Church, Kennington for the Kennington Chartist Project in 2018. Topics covered include:

  • Chartistm as both a family and mass political movement, possibly Britain’s first civil rights movement.
  • A series of small victories, Five out of six aims achieved.
  • Role of women, including women only Chartist groups.
- Ethnic representation including William Cuffay and David Duffy; Romany Prophet Charles Lee and Anglo Indian John Taylor.
  • Naming of children after Chartist leaders; Children as flag bearers; Educational initiatives; Sunday schools; Temperance branches;
  • Chartist Petition sizes.
  • Background of European unrest in 1848, establishment reaction, numbers of troops, police and special constables mobilised.
  • Chartists become a pressure group for social justice. Activism in local politics. Link between Chartism and General Booth (Salvation Army), and to the Parliamentary Labour Party
- Legacy: increased social capital of ordinary people, awareness of what people had in common
  • Parliamentary legislation moves to social and economic measures for all, reduced policies of oppression and local government opened up to local people – active citizenship, political awareness and participation.

Malcolm Chase is Professor of Social History at the University of Leeds and a leading historian of 19th-century popular politics and the labour movement. He is the author of four books, including Chartism: A New History (2007) and The Chartists: Perspectives & Legacies (2015)