Ken Loach and John McDonnell to headline Momentum's politics festival The World Transformed

The politics festival viewed as a rival conference by some Corbynsceptics is back for a second year. 


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The film director Ken Loach and shadow chancellor John McDonnell will be speaking at Momentum's politics festival The World Transformed during the Labour party conference in Brighton.

The announcement of the 2017 festival comes at a time of relative Labour unity, in marked contrast to 2016, when Momentum's "special event" was viewed by critics of Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn as a rival conference.

Corbyn said of this year's event: "The World Transformed has shown itself to be a powerful new space on the Labour Party conference fringe for people to debate policies, exchange ideas, and expand our political horizon with arts, music and culture. 

"Events like these complement the main conference, open up politics and help develop a strong campaigning movement to elect a Labour government for the many not the few."

In 2016, The World Transformed held more than 150 hours of events, attended by more than 5,000 people. The organisers planned to follow this up with 100 local Brexit events in 2017, but were stymied by the snap election. 

This year, the organisers expect to hold more than 160 hours of events from 23 to 26 September and again host thousands of attendees. New Statesman columnist Stephen Bush will be among those speaking. 

The conference will be ticketed, with general entry to the main festival programme. There will also be special events ticketed separately, and free tickets available for the unwaged. 

Julia Rampen is the digital news editor of the New Statesman (previously editor of The Staggers, The New Statesman's online rolling politics blog). She has also been deputy editor at Mirror Money Online and has worked as a financial journalist for several trade magazines.