The 0161 Festival, whose name references both the numerical code for Manchester and corresponds to the letters AFA, the acronym for anti-fascist action, is returning for its fifth year.
Starting on Thursday June 14, the action kicks off with local activists giving visitors a left-wing walking tour of the Peterloo Massacre, sites related to Chartism, the suffrage movement, and the city’s links to the writings of Frederick Engels and Karl Marx.
From Friday until Sunday the music takes in an ambitious range of genres, from traditional hard-edged Oi! and street punk, to black metal, acoustic and folk, ceilidh-influenced stylings from London-Irish band Neck, and the terrace-flecked rap-punk of the balaclava wearing Moscow Death Brigade.
Acts will be travelling to the festive from as far afield as Russia, Germany, Singapore, Czech Republic and the Basque country.
It’s all about the politics, the festival organisers say, as it is not the acts’ style which links them all together but their militant anti-fascist stance. For this reason ticket prices for the whole weekend remain a low £35.
Asked about potential disruption from far-right groups, the organisers respond: “We’d like to see them try.”
Written by Gary Oak for The Morning Star