Take Back Control Plymouth

will take place on the

Saturday 13th of May


Red House Theatre

School of Creative Arts, 

22 Millbay Rd,

Plymouth PL1 3EG



It will be a day of talks, workshops, exhibitions, performances and food that will bring together leave and remain voters, make sense of the Brexit negotiations and discuss the change we want to see in our communities.




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Take Back Control | 13th May | 10:30 am | Red House Theatre


What does Brexit mean for you? (10.30 - 11.30: Theatre)

The EU referendum meant many things to many people. Yet how we voted this one time has since been used to define our political identities entirely, often obscuring the shared desires we all have for a better society. We want to start the day by sharing our experiences of the referendum and our hopes and fears for Brexit. But we also want to start thinking about the things that matter but all too often get left out of the political conversation, and that can’t be covered by either “In” or “Out.”



Building from the bottom up (11.30 - 13.00: Theatre)

Across Plymouth people are getting together to support each other and improve their communities. For many, arts and music is at the heart of what they do, and motivating them is a belief that cultural activity can be a force for positive social change. In this session we’ll be hearing from community activists and artists as they discuss their different approaches to change and their experiences of Plymouth. We’ll also be discussing the importance of having community spaces in which people can come together to collaborate, build relationships and create a better future.


Helen Williams (Stonehouse Action)

Ray White (formerly of Effervescent)

Justin Pollard (Bread and Roses)

Jo & Toby Gorniak (Street Factory)

Maria Kotowska (Chair)



The beautiful game (11.30 - 13.00: Workshop A)


Be it unaffordable ticket prices, corruption, or a game dominated by corporate interests, we’re often reminded that the beautiful game isn’t always so beautiful. Yet while the business of football often overshadows the game itself, there are many campaigning for change at the grassroots. Supporters have been getting organised, demanding a say in their clubs and organising across the community, giving new meaning to what it means to be a football supporter. We’ve also witnessed football teams and organisations spring up across the country with the aim of bringing people together around a shared love of the world’s number one sport, with inspiring results. In this session, we’ll be hearing from those campaigning for change in football and from those for whom football has proved a positive force for social inclusion.



Chris Webb (President, Plymouth Argyle Football Club - personal capacity)

David Feindouno (Plymouth Hope Football Club)



Rise of the robots? (13.00 - 14.30: Theatre)


We are living in an age of rapid change, as new technologies and automation reshape the economy and our role in it. While for some, these developments have provided an opportunity to pursue innovative and rewarding forms of work, for others they have been experienced through insecure employment and fear for the future. How successfully we respond to the challenges and opportunities posed by these changes will likely determine the extent to which we are able to live secure and rewarding lives in the years to come. Our panelists will be discussing how exactly we do this and what the future world of work will look like.



Helen Hester (Academic and feminist)

Nick Srnicek (Author of Inventing the Future)

Rachel Dobbs (Artist and educator)

Chris Hunt (i-Dat)



Low pay no way (13.00 - 14.30: Workshop A)


We live in a low pay, low skill, zero hour society, with an increasing number being forced into dead-end jobs that don’t pay enough to meet even the most basic costs of living. Despite a recognition among a growing number of politicians that work simply isn’t working, real solutions are few and far between. This participatory session will explore the causes of insecurity at work - including outsourcing, privatisation, agency work, and the gig economy - as well as how workers have fought and won control of their working lives. It will also look at the impact of migrant workers, on pay, job security and how we work today, exploring how the race and gender is crucial to labour exploitation.

Organised by War on Want



Owen Espley (Trade unionist & senior campaigner, War on Want)



The Progressive Deal: what are we fighting for out of Brexit? (15.00 - 16.30: Theatre)


Although a majority voted for Brexit, there is no mandate for what the government is now doing: a Brexit without accountability and in favour of corporate interests. Another Europe is Possible is campaigning for democracy in the process and for a ‘Progressive Deal’ to preserve the progressive aspects of EU membership. But what does “progressive” mean? What do we mean when we talk about “concerns” about immigration? Is there a route back to staying in the EU, and should we even be talking about it? We have some idea what we think, but that isn’t enough – we want your input, experiences and ideas as part of our campaign for a ‘Progressive Deal’. We want you to tell us: how do we take control of Brexit?


Organised by Another Europe is Possible



Feel the Bern: learning how to canvas with the Sanders campaign (15.00 - 16.30: Workshop A)

In their immensely successful campaign, the Bernie Sander's team mobilised hundreds of thousands of activists to communicate with voters on the doorstep and now they’re going help us do the same thing. This hands-on training session, ran by a senior member of the Sanders campaign team, covers how to best get across the your vision and deal with apathy and difficult questions to help you be the most confident and effective activist you can be.



Kim McMurray (National Training Director, Bernie Sanders Campaign)



Mapping our communities: Barne Barton digital map (15.30 -16.15: Workshop B)


Can mapping your local area help to bring about positive change in your community? A group of young people from Plymouth’s Barne Barton neighbourhood have been answering this very question and together developing a digital map of the area as a way to examine their surroundings and open up their experience of the area to others. They’ve been mapping special areas of interest, tracking shortcuts used by locals and showing which parts of the area are accessible to the public, and which areas are owned by the Ministry of Defence. In this short presentation, they will demonstrate the map itself and speak about the experience of developing it with a range of specialists, including a local historian, GIS experts from Plymouth University, a web developer and an illustrator.


Organised by Tamar View Community Ambassadors



Faking it: media and in an age of misinformation (16.30 - 18.00: Theatre)


We live in a world where lies are disguised as ‘alternative facts,’ and ‘fake news’ fuels social media storms that split popular opinion and regularly descend into abuse. As the digital revolution combines with political polarisation, the way in which we consume news and interact with media organisations, and each other, has changed dramatically. Yet in many ways the media remains much the same as it was fifty years ago, with the majority of journalists sharing similar, elite backgrounds, and a handful of individuals owning most of the newspapers. In this session we’ll be discussing the state of the media today, the ways in which we communicate with each other, and whether ‘truth’ is still the primary pursuit of journalists today.



Eleanor Penny (Poet & senior editor, Novara Media)

Alan Qualtrough (Former editor, West Morning News & Plymouth Herald)

Timothy George Kelly (Director, Brexitannia)


The many, not the few: proportional representation & Labour in the 21st Century (16.30 - 18.00: Workshop A)


Join Make Votes Matter and the Labour Campaign for Electoral Reform for the launch of their new report, setting out why the Labour Party must now back proportional representation (PR) for general elections. Not only is PR more democratic but, as we shall see, it leads to stronger progressive politics and more equal societies. In fact, in the 21st Century, PR is a prerequisite of a properly-functioning democracy in which power, wealth and opportunity are in the hands of the many, not the few. This interactive session will give attendees the opportunity to discuss the impact of a more representative democracy on society, and to find out how this momentous change can be brought about. 



Mary Southcott (Labour Campaign for Electoral Reform)

Shavanah Taj (PCS Wales Secretary)

Owen Winter (Spokesperson for Make Votes Matter)



Real change in the Ocean City (18.00 - 19.15: Workshop A)


From ‘Positively Plymouth’ to the ‘Ocean City,’Plymouth has had its fair share of rebrands in recent years as part of ambitious plans to lure investment and transform the city. Yet with Brexit now firmly the horizon - and with the majority of Plymouth residents voting to leave the EU - change is on its way. But what will that change look like? And how do we make sure that it’s change that works in the interest of everyone? In this session you’ll hear from a diverse range of speakers, each with unique expertise, on the ways in which we can help Plymouth flourish. We also want to hear from you how Plymouth can be transformed for the better.



Judith Scott (academic)

Jeremy Goslin (Academic and Labour Campaign Team organiser) 

Sarah Allen-Melvin (Regional officer South West, NUT)

Anairda (Community artist and actvist)




Face painting / Print making with Alan Qualtrough (former editor of the Herald), make a letterpress print with no editorial oversight (maybe some supervision) / Meat raffle with veggie option and special surprise announcer / Take Back Radio: have your voice heard / Radical portrait photography with Rachel Sherlock / Art fair with Give Under Your Day Job / Artwork co-curated with Studio 102 / Speech Karaoke / Food from The Real Junk Food Project / Drinks and a bar from Bread and Roses / Music from Diamond Family Archive, Fantasy Orchestra and Zappopin' / Dance from Street Factory