'Cinderloo Bridge'?: Campaigners call for Telford's new £10 million footbridge to be named after 1821 uprising
Campaigners are calling for Telford's new £10 million landmark bridge to be named in memory of those that died in the 1821 Cinderloo uprising.
People behind the campaign said it would provide a lasting tribute to those who lost their lives or were injured during the march, which saw about 3,000 men and women travel from all corners of what is now Telford in protest of a cut in wages at nearby collieries.
The little known piece of local history saw many of those marching injured or even killed during a clash with the Shropshire Yeomanry, near to where the Forge retail park stands today.
The call is being made by the Cinderloo 1821 group, who are working to mark the battle for its 200th anniversary.
They say the bridge is a great opportunity to right the wrong of iron masters being remembered in many Telford place names, despite there being no formal memorial to the ordinary working people.
Pete Jackson, a spokesman for the group, said: "The opportunity to call the new foot bridge the ‘Cinderloo bridge’ would create a resource that would prompt our communities new and old to question what was here before Telford, in a spirit of curiosity rather than one of rose-coloured spectacled nostalgia.
"It would also bring to life a story that could captivate generations to come that celebrates social justice and the importance and relevance of history to our current challenges.
"The re-establishment of the link between north east Telford and the town centre via the footbridge also provides an opportunity to right a wrong that the new town has not up until now been able to reconcile. That is the recognition of the the industrialists in Telford’s road naming and geography and the omission of the role played by the ordinary working people in the town who did so much to create the wealth on which it is built."
Cinderloo 1821 was recently given £10,000 through the National Lottery to help commemorate the uprising.
The money will help local people of all ages to explore the story and the events that led to the uprising, how the events impact on current community issues, and the physical origins of the events.
Organisers say naming the bridge after Cinderloo would provide a launching point to develop the profile.
Roadworks along the A442 underneath the new footbridge were removed over the last few days, leaving two lanes open for the first time in many months.
Motorists have had to queue along a single lane on both sides of the main road through Telford while work is carrying on.
An official opening of the new bridge will take place in early spring when the whole project comes to an end.