Website Design Opportunity for People’s History Museum


The People’s History Museum (PHM) has an exciting opportunity for an agency to deliver a new website for the museum at a time of ambitious growth and change for the museum. Becoming an Arts Council England (ACE) National Portfolio Organisation (NPO) for the first time in 2018, the museum is keen to develop its online presence to better reflect its creative, dynamic and collaborative programming.

The new website will help us achieve the aims laid out in our current Business Plan:

  1. We will have a strong programme-led approach across all services at the museum
  2. We will engage more people in the work of the museum as audiences, customers and partners
  3. We will turn up the volume on the museum’s profile and position locally, nationally and internationally
  4. We will increase our self-generated income and create a more resilient financial model
  5. We will build a bigger and better digital offer
  6. We will strengthen the museum to be more confident, ambitious and effective

The requirements in the brief are informed by our new Digital Plan which runs from 2018 until 2022, however, they should be reviewed as part of a rigorous user-tested approach to the website design and development.

Please provide a proposal outlining how you would deliver the brief by email to by midnight on Thursday 15 February 2018. Please include relevant examples, each with a reference, of your recent work in this area and an overview of how you would approach this piece of work. The museum will shortlist from the submissions received and interviews with shortlisted agencies will be held on Thursday 22 and Friday 23 February 2018.

For an informal conversation about this opportunity please contact Paula Hope, Communications & Marketing Manager or Daisy Nicholson, Marketing & Development Officer on 0161 838 9190.


Represent! Voices 100 Years On


The Manchester suffragette banner in the Conservation Studio at PHM


Represent! Voices 100 Years On

PHM wants your objects and stories!

2018 is the 100th anniversary of the Representation of the People Act, in which all men and some women won the right to vote. To mark this monumental anniversary People’s History Museum (PHM) are developing a crowd sourced exhibition which will open on Saturday 2 June 2018. And we need you to submit your objects and stories!

Today most men and women in the UK, over the age of 18, have the right to vote. We are asking for submissions around the following themes:

  •         Do you feel represented? If so, how? If not, why?
  •         Does having a vote mean you have a voice in society?
  •         Who cannot vote or doesn’t know how to use their vote?
  •         How far have we really come in 100 years?
  •         Have there been any defining moments in your life when you have campaigned for greater democracy or equality?
  •         What still needs to be done?

We are looking for you to share your posters, placards, artworks, photographs or something more personal, along with a short explanation or personal perspective. Those submissions will then be selected by the Represent! steering group for the final exhibition. To share an example of the types of things we are looking for…Sarah Galligan a member of the Women’s Equality Party has submitted a letter which she wrote as a 10 year old school pupil entitled ‘Why can’t girls play football?’ She says this was a defining moment in her life when she realised that girls should not only be able to play football, but also should be able to have equal rights across society. Today she continues to fight for gender equality.

To make a submission to the Represent! Voices 100 Years On exhibition, please send a maximum of 200 word summary of your submission, alongside any relevant images to by 1 April 2018.

If you have any queries or would like to discuss this further, please contact Helen Antrobus on 0161 838 9190 or email




Represent! Call for Designer & Evaluator

The Manchester suffragette banner in the Conservation Studio at PHM

We are pleased to announce two exciting opportunities to work with us on our 2018 programme.

Represent! Will mark the 100th anniversary of the Representation of the People Act, in which all men and some women won the vote.  This monumental anniversary will be marked across the country, and PHM will be a leading voice in championing the heritage of the people that fought for this fundamental right. We will programme a year long season of exhibitions, events and learning programmes co-curated with marginalised and underrepresented communities on the theme of the struggle for representation.

We are looking for designers to develop the design and visual identity for both the main exhibition and 2018 programme. The full details in the design brief here.

If you would like to submit an expression of interest please return a PDF with the following information to by 5.00pm on Sunday 17 December 2017:

  • Full contact details
  • Relevant examples of your portfolio
  • A statement outlining your understanding of the brief, your values and why you want to work on this project

We are also recruiting an external evaluator to devise and implement a robust evaluation strategy to measure the impact of the museum’s Represent! project running throughout 2018. Full details can be found in the Represent! Evaluation Brief.

Please submit an expression of interest as a PDF, with the following information to by 5.00pm on Tuesday 19 December 2017:

  • Brief CV (max two sides of A4)
  • A statement of your suitability for this work and why you would like to undertake it (max 300 words)
  • A plan outlining what your approach would be (max 800 words)
  • A basic budget breakdown
  • Two testimonials/references




NHS Protest Apron

A guest post by Gabrielle Lorenz and Sylvan Davies, Fabric of Protest members

Our original NHS Protest Apron was inspired by attendance at a Fabric of Protest workshop at the People’s History Museum, focusing on protest messages incorporated into items of clothing.

Dismayed at how the NHS is currently being stealthily dismantled piece by piece we decided to embroider quotes from the founder of the NHS onto a plain white nurse’s apron and offset these with a printed shattered current NHS logo.

NHS Protest Apron 1

 Nicky Salmon, Gabrielle Lorenz and Sylvan Davies at the Anti-Austerity March in Manchester 

Our first apron was delicate and intended for exhibition purposes only. However, in September we decided to make a second more robust apron to wear during the Anti-Austerity March at the Tory Party Conference in Manchester on 1st October. We complemented the apron by making two arm slings each with a current quote, one from Professor Stephen Hawking and one from Kelly-Anne Mendoza outlining the damage being caused to the NHS by the Tory government. The slings also included a Save Our NHS logo, courtesy of 999 Call For The NHS.

NHS Protest Apron 2

Gabrielle Lorenz, Nicky Salmon and Sylvan Davies

October 2017


Fabric of Protest

Come along to this monthly creative workshop and share ideas of protest over a cup of tea, while learning new textile techniques. Taking inspiration from the museum’s collection, participants will work collaboratively to produce pieces of artwork rich in personal responses and exploration. Being at the centre of textile production in Manchester historically, we will collect personal stories, learn about the conditions for workers, and compare the industry from past to present with global textile production and zero hours contracts.

Artist Helen Mather leads The Fabric of Protest workshops. You can read Helen’s latest blog post and follow what the participants are learning and creating on Helen’s tumblr blog.

Participants can attend an individual workshop or join us on a regular basis to shape how the work develops.

Suitable for adults and young people over 11yrs.

Represent! Call for exhibitions

2018 will mark the 100th anniversary of the Representation of the People Act, in which all men and some women won the vote. To mark this monumental anniversary, the People’s History Museum will programme a year long season of exhibitions, events and learning programmes working with marginalised and underrepresented communities on the theme of the struggle for representation.

As part of the community exhibition strand of the programme we are pleased to announce an open call for submissions from groups or individuals wishing to display or produce an exhibition around the theme of representation. The 2018 community exhibition programme will be selected by a panel of museum staff and members of a cross section of community groups.

Available dates:

Engine Hall

Exhibitions will run for one month and slots available are

Friday 23 March –Sunday 22 April 2018

Friday 3 August-Sunday 2 September 2018

Friday 7 December –Sunday 6 January 2019

Main Gallery Two display area

Will run for three months and slots are available between April 2018 and January 2019

To apply:

Deadline for submissions: Sunday 26 November 2017, 5.00pm

Please send submissions for the attention of Mark Wilson, Exhibitions Officer to the museum address or by email to  If you have any questions please email or phone 0161 838 9190.

Get Kids Out Learning

This year we’re teaming up with the ‘Get Kids Out Learning’ campaign to encouraging more families to drop the smartphone, step away from the laptop and head outside to create learning experiences, memorable for years to come.

We believe that learning continues outside of the classroom, especially during half term.  So, why not join us for a range of family friendly events and workshops this October half term. We’ll have the Mysterious Creature craft table, a Living History performance of No Bed of RosesFrom the Caribbean to Manchester,   and Make Your Mark: Animal graffiti mural.

Mr Ordinary's Prize Book Launch 08 07 12 (40)

If you’d like to support the campaign and Get your Kids Out Learning here’s how to get involved:

The Get Kids Out Learning campaign is an easy way for families to find fun days out local to them, but which still provide great learning and educational opportunities for the kids. The website pulls together all of the best educational venues across the UK and allows parents to search for them by region to quickly see all the information they need to plan a great day out!

Find attracts in your local area by visiting the Get Kids Out Learning site.

PHM at Manchester Pride

A guest blog by Jenny White, a Community Curator for our Never Going Underground  exhibition

If you’re watching Manchester Pride Parade on Saturday give us a wave. Staff and volunteers from People’s History Museum are out on the streets serving LGBT+ heritage realness.

The Never Going Underground exhibition has a number of items exploring Pride’s journey from political activism to a corporate sponsor’s dream. Leaflets, banners and photos highlight ongoing issues around diversity, accessibility, and inclusion; and contrasting attitudes to police and the armed forces taking part in parades. We also bagged an interview with Peter Tatchell who as a member of the Gay Liberation Front helped organise the first London pride back in 1972.

LGBT+ people are drawn from wildly different backgrounds and there can be a real clash of aims and priorities over Pride season. 

1979 Wages Due Lesbian leaflet

How Gay is Gay? flyer, LSE Library’s collections

This Wages Due Lesbians leaflet from 1979 questions who Gay Pride and the ‘gay’ scene is for. It’s a question still very relevant today with racism, sexism and transphobia very much alive and kicking within LGBT+ communities. Over the past few months activist Chardine Taylor Stone has continued to challenge the programming of blackface artists at LGBT+ prides across the country. It’s fantastic that this year there has finally been a positive outcome to Rainbow Noir’s call for Manchester Pride to be a Queens of Pop free zone.

knitted pluses

Also on display in the Never Going Underground exhibition are a set of @aceknitaholic’s craftivist pluses. They’re used to yarnbomb community stalls at Pride events that miss the ‘+’ from LGBT+ and to start a dialogue with stall holders to promote inclusion and recognition of other sexual and gender minorities outside the ‘LGBT’ spectrum.

There are photos and flyers from the first Peckham Pride organised in 2016 by Movement for Justice and Lesbians and Gays Support the Migrants. We recorded an interview with one of the organisers, Karen Doyle, who tells us about the aim to promote solidarity between LGBT+ people and migrants, and to celebrate local resistance against immigration raids and detention centres.

We’ve a Campbell’s soup costume which was worn at London Pride 2008. Activists were calling for a boycott of Heinz products after the firm pulled a gay themed advert instead of holding their ground against complaints.

Everyone has an opinion on the involvement of big business in Pride. Some people hate corporations using rainbow imagery and messages about ‘freedom’ to market goods. Others think it’s no bad thing that big corporations are spreading tolerance, making LGBT employees feel valued, and making a positive contribution – Asda’s LGBT network for example organises family friendly areas at a number of Prides. Personally I think if it annoys the bigots it must be doing some good:

homophobes starving

Each summer disgruntled cisgender heterosexuals take to social media asking ‘why do the gays need pride?’, ‘why can’t we have a straight pride?’. But it’s a no brainer.

Vile homophobic and transphobic attacks in Manchester are still all too common. In February I gave a talk at an LGBT+ History Month event in Bournemouth, where Christian activists sat in on the whole day’s talks in protest at us spreading gay propaganda. Last year a teaching assistant successfully took legal action against her school after they criticised her for expressing homophobic views to pupils. Conservative activists are currently voicing opposition to updating the humiliating and outdated process transgender people currently have to undergo to change their legal gender. A spokesperson for Grassroots Conservatives labelled transgender people “deeply troubled”, and compared gender dysphoria with anorexia “it’s not actually respectful or loving to affirm that person in a belief that is false, that doesn’t tie up with reality.” Meanwhile in July a Labour councillor branded gay pride marchers paedophiles.

Pride is a celebration of difference, an opportunity to confront homophobia, bi-phobia transphobia, as well as a chance to party. 

If you haven’t checked out the Heritage Lottery Funded Never Going Underground exhibition, get your skates on – the final day is Sunday 3 September.