The much anticipated history of Lambeth in the 1980s is due out (social and economic crisis permitting) at the end of the year with Breviary Stuff who specialise in radical local histories.
The book started off as a history of Lambeth Council during that decade when it was regularly labelled as ‘loony left’ – I wanted to look into what actually happened, to strip away from of the myth and explain the politics of the time.
But the more I read the more it became clear that there was so much going on, how could you write a history of Lambeth and not deal with the riots, the fight against police repression, the huge squatting movement, the ‘Front line’ of Railton road, the LGBT scene and the rest?
Lambeth was a borough of resistance with a fascinating political history. Of course there were also tensions and problems, legitimate criticisms and mistakes. Radical Lambeth is sympathetic to the left wing struggles taking place but it is not a hagiography or a puff piece, I want to look at some of the murkier aspects of local politics as well as how effective the left struggles and strategies were.
As such, I hope this book does it justice.
For more details of the launch of Radical Lambeth and any public meetings coming up, please get in touch!