Manchester’s Factory Records founder Alan Erasmus to travel to Ukraine to help aid efforts

Alan Erasmus, 72, who co-founded the pivotal Manchester-based record label with Tony Wilson, told friends he hopes he can make a small difference.

The founder of iconic record label Factory is to travel to Ukraine to help the humanitarian aid effort at the age of 72.

Alan Erasmus, who co-founded the pivotal Manchester-based record label with Tony Wilson in 1978, said he wants to 'stand up' to Vladimir Putin, who he branded a 'bully'.

His pal, DJ Dave Haslam, revealed on Twitter than Alan had sent him a text message likening his plans to those of the volunteers who fought in the Spanish Civil War.

Alan, who was played by Lennie James in the 2002 film 24 Hour Party People, said he would first travel to Krakow before crossing the border.

A woman hugs a girl as refugees from Ukraine wait for a transport at the Moldova-Ukrainian border’s checkpoint near the town of Palanca Credit: Getty

In the text, he said: "I'm not having this. I've fought bullies of one kind or another all my life and Putin is no different.

"This is a very, very important moment in history Dave, it cannot be lost.

"I booked a flight to Krakow for tomorrow, from there I will make my way to Kyiv.

"Once there (with Durutti in mind) I will set about convening the Factory Nentsov Column made up of fellow helpers and volunteers.”

The Durutti Column was an Anarchist military unit that fought in the Spanish Civil War, comprised of volunteers fighting for an egalitarian society.

It also inspired the name of a band he managed in the 1970s.

He added: "Maybe one person can make a difference. Wish me luck, stay safe."

Factory Records was an indepent label based in Manchester that was the heart of the city's famous music scene throughout the 1980s.

The label featured iconic acts on its roster such as Joy Division, New Order, Happy Mondays, Northside, Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark and James.

It also ran the famous Haçienda nightclub in the city.