Marking the bicentenary of the Peterloo Massacre

A print depicting the Peterloo Massacre in Manchester.

To mark 200 years since the Peterloo Massacre, we're looking at the connections between our places and the rights and beliefs we hold dear today.

Why was the Peterloo Massacre important?

On the 16th of August 1819 thousands of pro-democracy and anti-poverty protesters gathered in St Peter’s Field in Manchester. A cavalry charge to disperse the crowd left an estimated 18 people dead and nearly 700 injured. The massacre was a turning point in our democracy, leading directly to the founding of the Manchester Guardian newspaper and becoming a catalyst for Chartism and other workers' rights movements. 

Two National Trust places, Quarry Bank and Dunham Massey, have strong connections to this event. In 2019 we'll be discovering more about their stories.

Remembering Peterloo

In 2019 we'll be marking the bicentenary of the Peterloo Massacre through new artwork inspired by conversations with people about rights and responsibilities, freedoms and the power to create. Under the artistic direction of Jeremy Deller, we'll be working with artist family Grace Surman and Gary Winters and their two young children Hope and Merrick to create the artwork at Dunham Massey and Quarry Bank.

The resulting artwork will be on display at both places as well as being part of Peterloo 2019, a special commemoration project being led by Manchester Histories and the People’s History Museum

These commissions are supported using public funding by the National Lottery through Arts Council England and with additional support from Art Fund.