The following morning, the 21st of October, saw the men marching the 15 miles to Loughborough. On arrival they received a £50 public subscription. Loughborough is in central England, on the Soar Riveras as well as having a wealth of historic buildings is also famous for its University and Colleges. Many famous people have walked through their doors. One such individual is the
world record holder for long-distance running Paula Radcliffe.
The usual market days in Loughborough date back to the 13th century. Coming more up to date, the market square plays host to a piece of controversial sculpture by Shona Kinloch. Loughborough has a beautiful Parish Church known as All Saints with Holy Trinity. The church dates back to the 13th century. Situated in a older part of the town, there has been many additions to the church and certainly warrants a visit to this beautiful medieval church. Alongside the church Loughborough can boast the John Taylor Bellfoundry Museum, Great Central Railway, War Memorial situated in Queen’s Park and much, much more. Surely well worth a visit.
On their arrival at Leicester some 14/15 miles further south of Loughborough, Councillor Riley announced that public donations had been that substantial that the men could be fitted out with new clothes. Sidney Sterek one reporter who walked side by side with the marchers reported “If the wives and families of the Jarrow pilgrims to London could have seen their men folk last night, they might have mistaken our sturdy and well nourished army for a huge theatrical male chorus. The crusaders have been rigged out in new flannel trousers, new boots and new underwear.” The old boots wear repaired for the cost of the leather and the local cobblers gave their services free. Later a lovely meal was provided and overnight sleeping would be at the Institute. Of this Sidney Sterck reported “If Leicester had done no more than this for the marchers, it would have been said… that it just about topped the list of the most hospitable cities, towns and villages through which we have so far marched.” But Leicester did more. It fell around our necks and hailed us as friends in dire need of assistance.(Quote North Mail 23rd October 1936)
It was reported that around this time Ellen Wilkinson not only spoke at the nightly meeting the marchers held, she had also been leaving the march to speak at the Labour Party Conference in Edinburgh, or to Dewsbury to make speeches on behalf of the men. She was also a great leader of encouragement and made it her business to speak to the men as they marched, letting them know she was 100% with them.
- Loughborough Parish Church.Image: Webshots