We made a little video for ‘Tom Palin at Cinderloo’ – do share, do tell us what you think!
We’re starting to spread the word about ‘Understories‘ – a new poetry and music collaborative project between myself and musicians Charlotte Watson, Steve Downs and Sarah Ibberson of Whalebone.
‘Understories’ explores the new folklore of Shropshire. Here are both rural and urban myths, tales just out of living memory and tales re-told. They are the common uncommon.
We’ll be performing the new show in 2019. Join us to discover Shropshire’s last wolves and cloggers, its haunted roundabouts, railway lines and oak trees, not to mention the boy who burrowed under a church.
This poem, ‘Tom Palin at Cinderloo’, explores the story of a rising by ironworkers in 1821, as they protested against draconian pay cuts. It happened in what is now Telford. It’s a classic tale of abuse of labour in the interests of profit, and it ended in the deaths of several of the strikers with many further injuries to women and children involved in the protest.
The name ‘Cinderloo’ was coined at the time, following the notorious events at Peterloo slightly earlier. The Cinder Hills was the local name for the slagheaps. The site of the struggle is now overlain by Telford Forge Retail Park. Plaque needed, I think.