Speaker: Mike Richardson, UWE.

This seminar will focus on Bristol’s experience of labour unrest between 1910 and the outbreak of the First World War. Rather than focus solely on Bristol’s famous union leaders, Ben Tillett and Earnest Bevin, this seminar will examine the events from the union rank-and-file perspective.

1910 witnessed a renewed outbreak of industrial strife in Britain, as significant sections of the trade union rank-and-file began to express their frustration at the lack of progress made in their struggle for better working conditions and a new social order.

Strikes reached levels not seen since the ‘new unionism’ upsurge of 1889-92. Workers unrest combined with clashes over Home Rule for Ireland, and the militant tactics of suffrage campaigners, which added to the problems of the ruling class.

Confronted by these parallel rebellions the ruling class feared their convergence, and some warned of the danger of revolution.

Free. No need to book.

Mike Richardson is a Visiting Research Fellow at the Centre of Employment Studies Research, UWE, Bristol).

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