My article for the New Statesman on LD here:
Visited St. Mary’s Putney last weekend, scene of the Putney Debates between civilian Levellers, rank and file army agitators and the ‘grandees’, Cromwell and Ireton. This Oct. will be the 360th anniversary of the debates.
The Putney Debates recently won Tristram Hunt’s competition in the Guardian to find the nation’s favourite radical moment. The church is going to get £1k to help commemorate the debates.
St. Mary’s already has a rather nice inscription from Thomas Rainsborough’s famous words at the debates on the wall (see pic), as well as a plaque about 1647 paid for (ironically some might say) by the Cromwell Association.
Looking at Rainsborough’s words in this church in Putney, surrounded by yuppie chain restaurants, it struck me that the ‘poorest he’ might have a life to live as much as the greatest, but he was unlikely to do much of it in SW15 (unless he was working mopping the floors in Carluccio’s)