From the TUC

Don’t throw it all away

12 Nov 2008, By

1888 Match workers

1888 Match workers

Don’t throw it all away
Today I was in a meeting with the women’s network at the TUC where we were given a presentation on the role of women in trade union history. It was fascinating to find out how much of labour history excluded women’s voices and yet, how vital a role, women played in industrialisation. We discussed some great examples of women’s organising, such as the 1888 match workers strike, and the work of the national federation of women workers. One of the message that came out of the meeting was that we have been rather sporadic in keeping records of a lot of trade union history. This recording would enable future generations to look back on our history and wander what we were doing.
At the end of the discussion I asked what we could do to ensure that labour history is recorded today? The answer ‘Don’t throw it away’, keep records of our time because one day this will be our history for others to marvel and learn from.
Footage such as video and photographs are great for bring history alive as you’ll be able to see from the archives at www.unionhistory.info
The equal pay footage at www.unionhistory.info/equalpay has gone some way to highlight women’s role in labour history.