What is the legacy of our Unitarian ancestors? What did they achieve in their lifetimes? Who were they?
This new book explores the fascinating story of Jack Milnes the democrat, his circle of friends from Westgate Chapel and of his cousin Richard’s quest to make a more equal and fairer society inspired by the ideals of the French Revolution and Jacobinism. Westgate Chapel, was the leading nonconformist chapel in the north of England, supported by the congregations at York, Leeds [Call Lane and interalia Mill Hill] and Upper in Sheffield, set about changing the way politics was done in the country.
Imprisoned, exported, tried for treason- Unitarians suffered for their faith and convictions that all men are equal.
The book explores the legacy of Jack on Wakefield and Yorkshire Unitarianism. Westgate drove radical politics across Yorkshire for 50 years, and witnessed the emergence of the Liberal Party from the rump of the Whig party. Men like Robert Bakewell, Thomas Lumb, Rev Tommy Johnstone fostered new political ideas across the country.
Where Mill Hill, York and Upper shied away from politics, Jack and Westgate remained active campaigners for a more equal society. For example, the anti-slavery campaign in Yorkshire began in the chapel in 1776.
Copies of the book are available directly from the author Paul Dawson at Wakefield Westgate Chapel.