England 1837: a country on the cusp of revolution. A young girl is propelled on a journey from a London slum to the servants’ quarters of a great house, and from first love to murder. In her flight from authority she comes across the Chartist William Lovett, a man striving to steer a middle course between the brutal coalition of Parliament and Industry and the angry forces gathering against it. But can his rational, moderate voice be heard above the din of government militias on one side and the roaring militancy of Feargus O’Conor on the other?
Ranging from East End squalor to Nottingham mills, Jack Shepherd tells a picaresque tale of tavern assemblies and prize fights, gin palace communists and bullying do-gooders, industrialists and whores, bringing to the Globe for the first time the sordid, violent times of early Victorian England.