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Visual Sociology: Red Lion Square Demonstration

Demonstration in London against the National Front organised by the London and Home Counties Area Council of Liberation, 15 June 1974

References of the photographs appear on the slideshow (file MSS.82/23 was also in the display at the introductory session). Below the slideshow is information about the context of the images (the archive collection from which they come), about their content and about sources of relevant background information. Please note the references of any photographs or other material you would like to study at the Centre.


Context: the demonstration led to disorder in Red Lion Square, during which a Warwick University student, Kevin Gately, sustained injuries of which he later died. These photographs are from the records of Cecil Angel and Company of Coventry, who acted as solicitors for the National Union of Students and the University of Warwick Students' Union in the public inquiry into the disorder.

Content: various scenes of confrontation between anti-National Front demonstrators and the police, mainly taken by press photographers. Kevin Gately is the tall, bearded and long-haired figure whose head is circled in some of the photographs (not the man with the wounded forehead) and is shown lying on a stretcher in the final image. Police truncheons are also circled.

Sources of background information: Tony Gilbert, Only one died: an investigation into police behaviour in Red Lion Square (3 copies in various archive collections) (MSS.21/380/2, MSS.126/TG/385/PUB/19 or MSS.280/129/8); National Union of Students: The Myth of Red Lion Square’, 1974 (MSS.21/378); National Union of Students file on the Red Lion Square Incident containing press cuttings, correspondence, etc. (MSS.280/54/2) (the NUS have given special permission to visual sociology students to see this file without having to apply individually to them); minutes, reports and circulars of the Warwick University Kevin Gately Action Committee, 1974 (MSS.115/1); Coventry Area Students 'Area News' and handbill about the demonstration, Jun 1974 (MSS.21/91-92).