People’s History Museum (PHM) presents an exhibition inspired by the legacy of Jo Cox MP, who was murdered in 2016. The display is the result of a community-led project, involving 30 people from different backgrounds who made Manchester their home by coming together to talk, share knowledge and experiences. Come along to learn more about Jo’s life, her work as an MP and how what she stood for continues to create a positive influence in the world today.
The museum will be open 7 days a week for three weeks during the Easter holidays (the weeks starting on 4, 11 and 18 April) so mark this half-term activity in your diaries. But don’t worry if you miss it in April – More in Common: in memory of Jo Cox has now been extended until 30 June, so there’s plenty of time to catch it before it ends.
Led by Jo Cox’s words: “We are far more united and have far more in common than that which divides us”, the exhibition explores Jo’s life and legacy, and follows the group of participants on their journey of celebrating all that which connects us and challenging discrimination. It seems that these words now resonate with us even more so than ever before, and the display at PHM is a reminder to honour our commonality.
The Jo Cox Memorial Wall takes centre stage in the exhibition, on public display for the first time since Jo’s murder in June 2016, when it was erected outside the Houses of Parliament. Now part of PHM’s collection, the wall features the handwritten tributes of hundreds of people, including children. Presented alongside it is the specially commissioned virtual Wall of Hope on which visitors to the museum and online can add their personal messages. The placards, banners and artworks that were created in the aftermath of Jo’s death are also on display for the first time.
More in Common is a fantastic chance to learn more about Jo Cox’s personal and professional life. Exploring her experiences such as the journey to becoming an MP, as well as how the genuine desire to see equality in education, bring communities together and address the problem of widespread loneliness drove her campaigning. Using objects, images and storytelling, the display brings visitors closer to Jo as a person, campaigner and the kindness that inspired her actions.
For families, PHM’s Learning Team have created a self-guided trail that looks at Jo’s story and the issues it raises through younger eyes. It provides children with the tools to learn and discuss with their families what they’ve seen and what thoughts they might want to reflect on. The exhibition has an online element too – the interactive Wall of Hope allows anyone to add a tribute while the Jo Cox Memorial Wall can be explored in close up detail.
The exhibition is a celebration of community spirit and Jo’s hard work and compassion. If you’re considering visiting, don’t hesitate and bring your whole family too.