The Tolpuddle Martyrs’ story as it happened, 180 years ago
180 years ago this week, a process was set in train that saw the Tolpuddle Martyrs tried, convicted and deported to Australia for seven years for the ‘crime’ of forming a union. It’s a story that still speaks to people today, and in the South West TUC, we’re bringing it into the everyday lives of people nearly two centuries on with a special Twitter history project.
The six farmworkers who were to become the Martyrs were arrested on February 24th 1834 and taken to Dorchester where they were charged with having participated in the administration of an illegal oath.
We’re commemorating this key story in the birth of the UK trade union movement with a special ‘live’ Twitter feed. We’ll be reporting on events in the Martyrs’ story in the same timeframe as they unfolded, telling how six humble farm labourers ended up changing history.
It’s a great way to make history come alive and to remember the hardship these brave men went through to enshrine in law the right to join a trade union. You can follow the tweets on @TolpuddleFest, running from today’s initial trial hearing, through to the deportations and public demonstrations supporting their cause.
Join us on Twitter to find out what happened, as it happens.