Features

Between the Wars

Mar 13th, 2018 | By admin | Category: Articles, Features, Frontpage, Lead

The period between the two world wars was one of the most turbulent in political history. The events of that time had a profound impact on the ILP and the development of British left-wing politics, as Ian Bullock describes in his important new book, Under Siege, reviewed here by HARRY BARNES.

After setting the scene in a brief and useful introduction, Ian Bullock takes us straight into his topic – the role and activities of the ILP between the end of the First World War in 1918 and the start of the Second World War in 1939. He covers an action-packed and complex period falling between these massive military conflicts, which profoundly affected the party political scene and had a major impact on the activities of the ILP.



Striking for a Higher Purpose

Mar 8th, 2018 | By admin | Category: Articles, Features, Frontpage, Lead

The lecturers’ strike, affecting more than 60 Universities and more than one million students, has thrown up new challenges to an increasingly dysfunctional university system. HAZEL HEAD reports.

As the lecturers’ strike by the University and College Union enters its third week, pressure is mounting on the well-heeled leaders of higher education to give ground. The strikers are opposing proposed changes to the long-established pension scheme which will transfer risk from employers to employees.



Ways Forward Through Co-operative Solidarity

Feb 19th, 2018 | By David Connolly | Category: Articles, Features, Frontpage, Lead

DAVID CONNOLLY reports from last week’s Co-operative Solidarity conference in Manchester.

“Co-ops are at the heart of Labour’s economic programme.” That was the key message from Shadow Business Minister Rebecca Long-Bailey at the Co-operative Solidarity conference. Drawing attention to the ‘right to own’ commitment in Labour’s election manifesto last year, she said that a Labour government would give workers a legal right to buy their own company if it was put up for sale by existing owners.



Voting Behaviour

Feb 19th, 2018 | By admin | Category: Articles, Features, Frontpage

Behind the leadership of Emmeline Pankhurst were many lesser-known figures in the Votes for Women campaign in the north of England, some of them members of the ILP. ANTONIA CHARLESWORTH remembers their contribution to the fight for women’s suffrage and profiles one Lancashire ILPer who played her part.
Manchester’s place in the history of the women’s [...]



For the Many: Is Labour Prepared for Power?

Feb 12th, 2018 | By Barry Winter | Category: Articles, Features, Frontpage, Lead

BARRY WINTER reviews a new volume of essays that analyse and criticise Labour’s much-heralded 2017 election manifesto, concluding that much more now needs to be done.

With a Preface by Ken Loach, an Afterword from Jon Lansman, and a dozen lively and informative essays evaluating Labour’s 2017 General Election Manifesto, For the Many does an impressive job.



ILP Profiles: David Thomas, Pioneer of the Welsh ILP

Feb 8th, 2018 | By admin | Category: Articles, Features, Frontpage

MARTIN WRIGHT remembers the remarkable life and immense contribution of a north Walian stonemason’s son who was instrumental in the early ILP’s growth and influence in Wales.

Wales was one of the great socialist heartlands of 20th century Britain. The early growth of the ILP was, however, relatively slow there. The party began to put down roots in industrial south Wales in the 1890s, but it wasn’t until after 1906 that it began to make headway in the mountainous, slate quarrying regions of the north.



Labour and the Corbyn Effect

Feb 3rd, 2018 | By David Connolly | Category: Articles, Features, Frontpage, Lead

DAVID CONNOLLY reviews a recent collection of essays that examine Labour under Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership and seek to map out a possible future for the Party.

I recently overheard a conversation in a café in Chester-le-Street that illustrated an on-going problem – namely that despite the many and varied travails of the May government, Labour and the Tories are still neck-and-neck in the opinion polls. The Corbyn Effect seeks to understand the potential and limitations of Corbynism.



With Orwell, Cottman and Quinto in Catalonia

Jan 8th, 2018 | By David Connolly | Category: Articles, Features, Frontpage, Lead

ILP Chair DAVID CONNOLLY reports on his visit to Catalonia last year to mark the 80th anniversary of George Orwell’s involvement in the Spanish Civil War.

George Orwell’s Homage to Catalonia is one of the great books of political literature of the 20th century. It records his time in Spain as a volunteer with the ILP in the first half of 1937, the political and social upheaval in Catalonia, the exhilaration of the workers’ takeover of large sections of the economy, the repression of the ILP’s sister party POUM by the government and his somewhat fraught escape to France, eventually returning to what he calls in the last page of the book, ‘the deep, deep sleep of England’.



The Movement and its Message

Jan 3rd, 2018 | By Barry Winter | Category: Articles, Features, Frontpage

BARRY WINTER reviews a new book on the Labour Church, and suggests the much-forgotten movement provides an important guide on how to remake left politics in the modern age.

Huddersfield-born Labour leader, Harold Wilson famously declared that the British Labour movement owes more to Methodism than Marxism. While he was right to recognise the religious influences upon many early socialists, it would be wrong to presume this meant they were not very radical. As Paul Mason once tweeted, “If people only knew how revolutionary Methodism was!” The socialist historian, Edward Thompson would have agreed.



Boggart Hole Clough & the ILP’s Campaign for Free Speech

Jan 3rd, 2018 | By admin | Category: Articles, Features, Frontpage, Lead

An area of open ground in north Manchester once hosted meetings with Keir Hardie and Emmeline Pankhurst, and became the focus of a battle for political freedom. ROD PETERS tells the tale.

Boggart Hole Clough in the 1890s covered some 147 acres of rough grass, sandy slopes, fields and natural woods. The geography of the Clough is such that a cup-shaped hollow, open to the brook side, makes a natural amphitheatre in the slope, holding perhaps 30,000 people.