These are the back issues of Red Rag. They'll be posted here every two weeks on or around the (27th) anniversary of their original publication. The latest — so far the only! — issue is dated October 11 1981 (pdf / txt); the next issue is due out on October 25th. Hopefully I'll have done some more work on the site itself by then.
Red Rag was a fortnightly newspaper which was printed and distributed around Reading, Berkshire from 1979 and through most of the 1980s. It was given away free to anyone who wanted to read it — we never sold a single copy — and costs were covered by donations, collectiing tins and the occasional benefit gig. With the passing of time the print run grew. The technology evolved from hand-cranked Gestetners to a full-sized offset Litho. But the content remained much the same: a personal and uncensored take on local news which justifyably earned the Rag its sobriquet Reading's Only Newspaper; added to which a heady brew of opinions, magazine articles, letters and comments, an unparalleled Events column and the Rag's legendary Going Out Guide — this was Red Rag — Free! Fortnightly! and Fun!
In this issue (pdf / txt): a report on the new Women's Centre; an exhortation to form tenants' groups; a reply to the suggestion that the women's peace camp at Greenham Common was "not properly planned and has become a distraction and a drain on our resources"; a moving account of how having a live-in boyfriend could leave a woman penniless. A then little-known band called U2 play at nearby Bracknell; E. P. Thompson and CND chair Joan Ruddock come to Reading for "Peace Week"; but Andy Warhol is not expected to attend his exhibition. Did someone say there was nothing to do in Reading?