Why a People’s Museum?

Somers Town is the place where radical social reformers made their home, and realised their dreams – “experiments in living” changing the lives of people. Support us. Sir Keir Starmer did – his letter is below.

“Somers Town is a small neighbourhood in my constituency It is bounded by busy international stations of Euston, King’s Cross and St Pancras, and yet it has retained a cohesive community, in part a living legacy of remarkable 20th Century social housing pioneers.  

It’s also a culturally significant area, home to earlier radical ideas about women’s education and medicine, politics, experiments in communal living and theatre – ideas of social justice that reach out to all of us. Amongst its inhabitants over the centuries are William Godwin, Mary Wollstonecraft, Mary Shelly, Charles Dickens, George Padmore, Doris Lessing, Mike Leigh, Jeremy Hardy and many more.

sir Keir Starmer

This is a rich narrative thread of social reformers and radical thinkers, which has been explored by the Somers Town History Club, who have honoured local people’s voices and working class histories. This group are now seeking a permanent museum/ gallery to honour these histories.
I am aware of the vision and extensive work of group, led by Diana Foster, over five years, a group who have the expertise, a solid basis in community, and connections to succeed in the creation of this social enterprise.
Such a museum would enhance the area.  it would help maintain a sense of place, and identity and supported by local people, it would contribute to social inclusion in an area impacted by so much recent development.
I am sure you will agree that this is an important proposal, especially at a time when local communities are at risk of becoming fragmented by large infrastructure projects such as HS2.

I give this project my full support and I hope that you will join me and support the creation of an innovative people’s museum, created in active partnership with the community.’

Sir Kier Starmer, 2019

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