UCL Grand Challenges


Re-Weaving the City

This project focuses on communicating historic narratives of lived experience, self-expression, resistance, and solidarity to audiences in Manchester. It was made possible with funding from UCL UK.

Photo by Karolina Grabowska from Pexels

1 September 2021


Grant: PVP UK
Year awarded: 2021-22
Amount awarded:  £5,000


  • Matthew Smith, Centre for the Study of Legacies of British Slave-Ownership
  • Matthew Stallard, Centre for the Study of Legacies of British Slave-Ownership

Re-Weaving the City is a public engagement collaboration between UCL’s Centre for the Study of Legacies of British Slavery (CSLBS) and Manchester’s Science and Industry Museum (SIM) which aims to centre narratives linked to the city’s historic cotton economy, colonisation, and enslavement with lived experiences, social movements, and physical locations in the city.

It will connect with new audiences and introduce diverse global stories into local public heritage ideas, conversations, and discourse through:

  • new research
  • online discussion forums
  • online audio content
  • in-person public engagement activities

This project builds on the strong foundations of the Centre and Museum’s successful 2021 collaboration, Cottonopolis—Manchester's Global Threads, a previous Grand Challenges project. This project developed an accessible and engaging archive of ten case studies exploring local and global experiences linked to the city’s historic cotton economy. Global Threads was delivered with a young, diverse team of seven mainly-Manchester-based researchers, who were recruited and trained as part of the project.

This project will also develop the skills and provide further opportunities for the research team, strengthening network building and deepening a longer-term collaborative relationship with SIM, a national museum, part of the Science Museum Group.

Impacts and Outputs

Image Credit: Karolina Grabowska