London SE1 community website

Michael Collins' book launched at Southwark Rose

Leigh Hatts

Southwark-born Michael Collins launched his book The Likes of Us at the Southwark Rose Hotel on Bankside.

Michael Collins
Author Michael Collins at the launch event

The author, fresh from an encounter with Andrew Marr on Radio 4, provided the guests with a slide show of Southwark from a sepia photograph of a vegetable stall to the latest Berkeley Homes hoarding.

The author defends the SE1 white working class against slurs and caricatures in the media arguing that their culture is intimately linked to a landscape and a concept of home in Southwark. He writes as a resident with deep family roots. His great-grandfather was accused of stealing sherbet from a shop at the Elephant & Castle.

Some of the book launch guests included family and friends who have now moved away as described in the book.

Writer and television producer Michael Collins declined to make a speech to allow the book to speak for itself but was in demand all evening signing books. Refreshment appropriately included sausage and mash.

The Likes of Us: A Biography of the White Working Class by Michael Collins (Granta £12)

The SE1 website is supported by people like you
We are part of
Independent Community News Network
Email newsletter

For the latest local news and events direct to your inbox every Monday, you need our weekly email newsletter SE1 Direct.

7,000+ locals read it every week. Can you afford to miss out?

Read the latest issue before signing up

News archive from February 1999 to January 2001
Got a story for us?
Contact us with your tip-offs and story ideas.