Labour, the trade unions and 1969’s In Place of Strife
Author: Peter Dorey

This book examines the 1969 attempt by Harold Wilson’s Labour Government to enact legislation to reform industrial relations. There was a particular concern to curb strikes by the trade unions. Published in the 50th anniversary of this ill-fated episode, this scholarly study makes extensive use of primary sources, many of them previously unpublished, most notably the archives of the Labour Party, the left-wing Tribune Group, the TUC, and the personal papers of the three key political figures involved, namely Harold Wilson, Barbara Castle and James Callaghan. The chapters are organised both thematically and chronologically, each one focusing on a particular aspect of the events leading to the proposed Industrial Relations Bill, and its subsequent abandonment. The book commences with an examination of the key economic and industrial developments of the early 1960s, to indicate how the ‘trade union problem’ was initially identified and defined. This led the Labour Government, elected in 1964, to establish a Royal Commission to examine industrial relations, but its report, published in 1968, was a cautious document, and therefore a deep disappointment to Harold Wilson and his Employment Secretary, Barbara Castle. They thus pursued their own industrial relations legislation, via a White Paper called In Place of Strife, but were overwhelmed by the scale and strength of opposition this aroused, and which eventually compelled them to abandon the legislation via a humiliating climb-down.

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The British left and the rise of fascism, 1919–39
Author: Keith Hodgson

In the years between the two world wars, fascism triumphed in Italy, Germany, Spain and elsewhere, coming to power after intense struggles with the labour movements of those countries. This book analyses the way in which the British left responded to this new challenge. How did socialists and communists in Britain explain what fascism was? What did they do to oppose it, and how successful were they? In examining the theories and actions of the Labour Party, the TUC, the Communist Party and other, smaller, left-wing groups, the book explains their different approaches, while at the same time highlighting the common thread that ran through all their interpretations of fascism. The author argues that the British left has largely been overlooked in the few specific studies of anti-fascism which exist, with the focus being disproportionately applied to its European counterparts. He also takes issue with recent developments in the study of fascism, and argues that the views of the left, often derided by modern historians, are still relevant today.

Peter Dorey

7 A ‘solemn and binding’ agreement Faced with implacable trade union hostility towards the ‘penal clauses’ in both In Place of Strife and the subsequent ‘interim’ Industrial Relations Bill, coupled with inexorably growing opposition both from within the Cabinet and on the Labour backbenches, Castle and Wilson spent two months, from mid-April until mid-June 1969, holding numerous meetings with senior TUC figures in an increasingly desperate attempt at securing a settlement. What Castle and Wilson were hoping for was a solution which would simultaneously provide

in Comrades in conflict
Open Access (free)
Governing Precarity through Adaptive Design
Mark Duffield

of work has increased. This includes the growth of insecure, poorly paid temporary work and marginal forms of self-employment ( TUC, 2017 ). Wages have stagnated, and social mobility stalled. Moreover, it is widely accepted that today’s young no longer enjoy the life chances of their parents ( Corlett, 2017 ). Given this downturn, living the dream has meant a massive expansion of debt financing ( Streeck, 2017 ). The acceleration of economic informality in the global South has been matched by the residualisation of market protection

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
Peter Dorey

voluntarism in industrial relations; the fact that In Place of Strife included ‘punitive’ measures, especially as these had been rejected by the Donovan Commission; the context and manner in which the subsequent ‘short’ Industrial Relations Bill was announced; sexism towards Barbara Castle, manifesting itself in the outrage which many (male) trade union leaders felt when a woman presumed to intervene in ‘their’ affairs. The trade unions’ commitment to ‘voluntarism’ As was clear in the TUC’s written submission to the Royal Commission on Trades Unions and Employers

in Comrades in conflict
Andrew Taylor

Baldwin’s amplification of One Nation politics and the State’s endorsement of voluntarism in industrial relations, allied to the TUC’s rejection of Direct Action. Maintaining this relationship necessitated holding in check Conservative hostility to the unions, which entailed the marginalisation of the party’s LSC. The key definer of government-union relations was, as we saw in Chapter 2 , the Ministry of Labour (see

in What about the workers?
Abstract only
The General Strike as social drama
Rachelle Hope Saltzman

] were to be put into effect immediately’ (Symons, 1957: 33–4). With this support from the Samuel Commission, mine owners were able to persist in their efforts to lengthen hours and cut wages. As noted in Chapter 1, these proposals were unacceptable to both the miners and the TUC, which voted in favour of a ‘coordinated action’ at the end of April 1926. 28 � A lark for the sake of their country � Contemporary testimonies indicate that, although most residents of Great Britain did not really fear a revolution per se, events of the previous decade had so threatened

in A lark for the sake of their country
The Hull Trades Council, 1872–1914
Yann Béliard

4 Contested coordinator: the Hull Trades Council, 1872–1914* Yann Béliard Introduction Trades Councils are prominent actors in all general histories of the labour movement: the foundation of the Trades Union Congress (TUC) in 1868 owed a lot to the initiative of the London Trades Council founded half a century before in 1818; and by the 1880s, there were more than one hundred of them across Britain. Because they constituted, outside of the TUC, the only bodies uniting workers beyond sectional barriers, Trades Councils – often called Trades and Labour Councils

in Labour united and divided from the 1830s to the present
Kate Bradley

to the Poor Man’s Lawyer and free legal advice centres, those studying trade unions also overlooked the role of the legal departments, as Latta and Lewis noted in their own survey of the field in the early 1970s.11 Aside from mentions in institutional histories of individual unions, Latta and Lewis found that the only dedicated study of legal departments to that point was a short appendix in Roberts’s 1956 study of trade union administration and governance.12 Latta and Lewis did not explain this caesura, which persisted even in the thinking of the TUC’s own survey

in Lawyers for the poor
Andrew Taylor

inflation, being more worried about maintaining full employment, prosperity and the consultative relationship with the TUC in the interests of sustaining governability. These worries were reflected in Churchill’s reconsideration of David Maxwell-Fyfe’s appointment as MLNS after the latter made speeches before the 1951 election suggesting a return to the 1927 Act leading to his replacement with the ‘non

in What about the workers?