Edward Poole, Ph.D. student, University of Manchester writes:
I am a Ph.D. student at the University of Manchester, studying the relationship between Christianity and communism/socialism in Britain between 1917 and the 1950s.
I am studying a number of Christian clerics who had communist and socialist sympathies, including Hewlett Johnson and Alan Ecclestone, amongst a number of other, less well known individuals.
I visited the Working Class Movements Library for the first time between 22 June and 1 July 2010, and I consulted several collections of papers concerning the Christian Socialist Movement in the nineteenth and early twentieth century, papers concerning the Hyde Socialist Church, and a large number of pamphlets collected by the Jubilee Group of Christian Socialists, as well as a variety of other papers. Amongst these papers I found many documents I had been seeking for my research and this has had enormous benefits for my research.
The staff at the WCML are great. Mike was able to track down several files for me before I arrived, and he and Alain between them know the contents of every scrap of paper in the collection. While I was there, they often emerged from the storage rooms, bearing boxes and boxes of papers and saying “this might be worth having a look at…” and everything they produced was ideal for me. Everyone there is friendly and I owe a great many thanks to Mike, Alain, Chris, Jane and everyone else that helped me in my visit for finding papers, offering suggestions, and making tea!
Thanks again, I will definitely be back!