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22 October - 13 November
FoSS and ESRC logos

Power, Protest and Progress: Exploring Manchester through the local life of law in the city

Manchester street sign

My local area theme

What’s on offer?

Join us for some ‘legal sightseeing' in Manchester in October! This exciting and participatory event will begin with a panel discussion around how the interactions of law and placemaking can allow us to create spaces for resistance, creativity and challenge. This will be followed by a legal ‘guided walk’ around Manchester exploring practical realities of how legal changes can have unanticipated effects at the local level. The walk will feature stories of how activists, lawyers and businesses have used local spaces creatively to avoid the law, to push for legal change, or to use legal regulations in unexpected ways. 

The legal walk will take about 1.5 hours outside so please plan for the Manchester weather!

We want the walk to be as open and interactive as possible and so will be encouraging questions as we go. We will be walking in Manchester’s City Centre on pavements and through plazas and streets so please contact the organisers to discuss specific accessibility requirements.  The event is covered by the university insurance.


What’s it about?

Law shapes how we experience and occupy different places. Sometimes law’s role in making places is very clear – police presence at protests, marches or sporting events influences what we can and cannot do in those events; legislative change, such as the Borders Act, or Brexit change the way that people and goods can cross borders; planning decisions influence whether or changes can be made to a city or an environment.

Law is often present but invisible in local spaces. It subtly shapes how we move through the city, who can be in particular places and who is excluded, and how safe we feel as we move through different locations. Paying attention to this hidden life of law can be an important part of bringing about legal change. This event will seek to make this local life of law visible.

Who’s leading the event?

This event will be led by Dr Jenny Kanellopoulou and Dr Kay Lalor from Manchester Metropolitan University. Jenny has undertaken extensive research in law and place in cities, including exploring urban squats in Ljubljana. Kay researches and publishes on women’s and LGBT rights. She is a member of GM4 Women’s Safety Group, working to draw attention to improving women’s safety in Greater Manchester.

Open to

Anyone over the age of 16 is welcome to attend but please do contact us if you have questions around accessibility.

Of particular interest to

This event is of interest to anyone with a keen interest in local and social history which of course Manchester has plenty of! From the Industrial Revolution to the Peterloo Massacre to the birthplace of Suffragette, Emmeline Pankhurst, this city is bursting at the seams with famous spaces and landmarks where legal history was made.

Scheduling information

The event will take place in two parts. You are welcome to attend both parts of the event, or just one. Please use the different Eventbrite registration options to indicate which parts(s) you will be coming to as places are limited.