Up to 18 people were killed that day and hundreds more injured when local magistrates ordered cavalry to attack a 60,000 strong political rally that had gathered at St Peter’s Fields to demand the vote.
The Peterloo Memorial Campaign has long called for an appropriate memorial in the city that educates and informs people about what actually happened on that day.
Campaigners have secured a pledge from the city council that a memorial will form part of the redevelopment of St Peter’s Square, which now stands where the massacre took place. And they are arguing for a democratic process to decide on the design of the monument.
After much argument it is now accepted by historians that Peterloo was indeed a massacre. But we should see it as much more.
The rebellion that started there was taken up later by the Chartists, and then the Suffragettes. That struggle – to secure political representation and power for the working class – continues today.
Manchester needs a fitting memorial to Peterloo.