Saturday, 7 May 2016

90th Anniversary of the General Strike in Swindon

To mark the 90th anniversary of the General Strike, Swindon Trades Council organised a day of history, protest, re-enactment and community at the Central Community Centre, Swindon. The high point of the event was a march around the Great Western railway village and park, symbolically carrying a coffin (as occurred in 1926) to represent the handful of scab railway staff who went to work in defiance of the strike. In a show of fraternity, John Partington attended on behalf of Reading Trades Union Council, sporting the new RTUC t-shirt!

The Day aimed to teach attendees a bit more about Swindon's radical past and the efforts of the Great Western Railway workers to fight for their rights and unite the community in solidarity and struggle.
The order of the day ran as follows:

12 noon: Meet at Central Community Centre for a march around the Railway Village in the spirit of the striking rail workers that came out en masse in 1926.

1pm - 3pm: Buffet, networking and talks from a number of great speakers, including the Secretary of South West TUC, Nigel Costley. Presentation of prizes to schools that have participated in our General Strike history prize award.

After 3pm: To the Glue Pot for those that would like a celebratory pint!

Dress code: Edwardian! (not obligatory, of course...)