‘Rouse, Ye Women!’ – The Story if Mary Macarthur and the Women Chainmakers
@ The Maltings, BerwickBook Now
12 April 2019
Tickets: £13.50 (£11 / £12 concs)
ROUSE, YE WOMEN
Mary Macarthur and the Women Chainmakers
– a play with folk music by Neil Gore and John Kirkpatrick
In 1910 the women chainmakers of Cradley Heath focussed the world’s attention on the plight of Britain’s low-paid women workers involved in the ‘home-working sweated industries’, hammering out chain-links in sheds in the backyards of their homes with their babies and children for 5 shillings (25p) for a 50-hour week.
Led by the charismatic union organiser and campaigner, Mary Reid Macarthur, hundreds of women laid down their tools to strike for a living wage. The success of the ten-week strike more than doubled their earnings and helped to make the principle of a national minimum wage a reality.
Through rousing traditional songs and moving ballads, Townsend Theatre Productions reveals the horrors of sweated labour, Mary Macarthur’s stunning national campaign to expose the perpetrators of this appalling employment, the universal sympathy for the workers, the flood of donations, and the events that led to a final victory.
“A powerful story, powerfully told.” – The Observer 4*
Townsend Theatre Productions: nominated for the Eastern Eye Arts Culture Theatre Awards 2018
The Guardian readers’ “favourite show” list 2017
LondonTheatre1 critics’ choice 2017
Nominated for The Stage Awards 2013
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