Shed marks its 50th birthday with a book

The Red Shed, Wakefield by Richard Council
The Red Shed, Wakefield by Richard Council

A project to create a written history of the people and politics of the Red Shed will be launched next week.

‘The shed’, aka Wakefield Labour Club, is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year and clubmen hope to have a book out by Christmas.

Speaking and writing sessions will be held throughout September and beyond to help compile the book.

The organisers want to hear from past and present members and campaigners who have made Labour Club history and promoted socialism. The living heritage project has received a £6,000 grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund. And the scheme has the backing of former Wakefield MP David Hinchliffe and local historian and author Ian Clayton.

Mr Clayton said: “We want this to be an enjoyable experience for all those who have been involved in the Red Shed over the decades.”

The history book coincides with a stage production of the ‘Red Shed’, produced by comedian Mark Thomas and currently on a national tour, and the club’s own half century celebrations at the end of September.

Ex Labour MP Mr Hinchliffe said: “The club’s fiftieth birthday will be marked by a significant stage production, events in the club itself and now a book devoted to a shed and its relevance in half a century of political and social change.

“This is a very exciting project and I hope as many people as possible come forward to be a part of it.”

Sessions will be held at the Red Shed on Vicarage Street South on Thursday, September 8 from 6pm to 10pm, Saturday, September 17 from 11am, Wednesday, September 21 from 11am and Monday, September 26 from 7pm.

Further dates will follow and will be published in the Express.