Taking a Radical Step
East End Walks tour guide David Rosenberg launches his sixth season of walking tours on the morning of Sunday 17th February, when he will be leading members of the public from Aldgate to Cable Street on an “Anti-Fascist Footprints” tour. David will explain how Sir Oswald Mosley’s “Blackshirts” built a powerful presence in the area in the 1930s but met determined resistance from Jews and non-Jews in the local community. He will walk the participants through the dramatic events of the Battle of Cable Street.
David Rosenberg set his walks in motion in spring 2008, offering a tour of “The Radical Jewish East End”, which focused on Spitalfields at the turn of the 20th century. He now offers six different walking tours that bring to life London’s conflicted social and political history with a particular focus on the last 200 years of life in the capital. His tours through “radical times and places” include three different East End walks as well as guided walks through Islington, Bloomsbury and Westminster.
David pitches his walk at all ages. “On my last walk of 2012,” he says, “the youngest person there was three months old and the oldest participant had celebrated her 90th birthday a few months previously!”
As well as organising tours for members of the general public, East End Walks has provided tours for specialist groups, including museums and archives, trade unions, NGOs, arts organisations, school and university groups, and religious and interfaith bodies. David has taken round participants from more than 20 countries in four continents.
In October 2012 he took part in a 2-day meeting in Barcelona with guides from other European countries who are working to bring the radical social history of their cities to life. They are forming a “History From Below” network and are developing a shared website to encourage people in other cities to join them in discovering and sharing their local histories. The network is planning to meet again in Berlin in Autumn this year.
Last April-June David led a weekly walks-based course for the City Lit Adult Education Institute, called “In the Footsteps of London’s Rebels”, from April to June. He will be repeating that this year.
Details of all David’s walks and online booking can be found on the East End Walks website: www.eastendwalks.com
The walks, which range from 2 to 2.5 hours, cost £8 per person (£5 unwaged/students)
Read David’s book – Battle for the East End: Jewish responses to fascism in the 1930s, Five Leaves Publications, £9.99