Roger Spalding took his first degree, History with a Literature minor, at the University of East Anglia (UEA), UK. This was followed by a PGCE awarded by the University of London. Somewhat to his surprise he secured a teaching position in his native Suffolk, which he held for seven years; during this time he became an active member of the East Anglian History Workshop Group based at the University of Essex and contributed a number of articles to the group’s journal. This experience stimulated his academic impulses and led him to register for a part-time research degree at UEA.
He left teaching in the mid-1980s and co-founded an independent TV production company, Praxis Films. This company secured a number of Channel 4 commissions, the most notable of which was Fish ’n’ Ships, a two-part documentary on the Grimsby fishing industry, which screened in 1987. After completing his part-time research degree, he secured a position as Lecturer at what was then Edge Hill College of Higher Education (now Edge Hill University). He is currently Senior Lecturer in Edge Hill University's History Department and Programme Leader for the BA in History.
His research interests include 20th century left-wing movements, in particular the Labour Party; the culture and politics of the 1930s in Britain; British historiography; and the British fishing industry. His books include: Fish ’n’ Ships (1987); Socialism and Communism, in the Access to History series (1999); Historiography: An Introduction (2007) and, edited with Alyson Brown, Entertainment, Leisure and Identities (2007).
He has also published in a number of journals, including: Socialist History; Gender and History; Journal of Local and Regional Studies; New Politics (New York). In 1999 he edited a selection of newsreel clips illustrating the history of the Labour Party for the Inter-Universities Film History Consortium, then based at the University of Leeds.