Can you contribute to Radical Lambeth?

cropped-red-flag-over-lambeth-1985-cover1Radical Lambeth is a project to record the experiences of people in the borough from 1978-1992.

Radical Lambeth was rejecting Rate-capping and setting illegal local budgets to meet people’s needs.

Radical Lambeth are the people who fought against Margaret Thatcher’s cuts and then Neil Kinnock as he sought to challenge the control of the left in the local Labour Party.

Radical Lambeth was the site of two riots in Brixton, where local people fought back against police violence and discrimination.

Radical Lambeth is the place where LGBTQ struggles saw squats and alternative newspapers circulated.

Radical Lambeth was the ‘Loony Left’, regularly scoffed at in the tabloid press.

But what do the people of Lambeth think about their own history?

The purpose of Radical Lambeth is to chronicle the experiences and history of local people through interviews and collecting archive research.

Radical Lambeth is PhD project that will specifically examine how the left led Labour Party in the borough tried to defy both Thatcher’s policies and the party leadership as the titanic social and political struggles that wracked Britain in the 1980s played themselves out in an inner London borough.

If you were politically active in Lambeth between 1978-1992 then I would love to hear from you. In particular if you were a Labour Party member or a local councillor during that time.

Please email radical.lambeth@gmail.com to get in touch.

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The Long March – a play in solidarity with South African workers

The Long March is a play by the Sarmcol Workers’ Cooperative, performed in both Zulu and English, about the 970 striking workers in South Africa in 1985 who were all fired by BTR, a British multinational corporation. They worked at Sarmcol, a rubber company owned by BTR. The play is based on the experiences of the workers involved, forming a union, campaigning for their rights and what happened when they were all sacked 3 days into the strike.

The Long March toured Britain in 1987 and was performed to a packed crowd in Brixton on 1 November.

You can read more about the Sarmcol strike and the workers’ cooperative that was established during the dispute here http://www.sahistory.org.za/archive/the-great-sarmcol-strike

The dispute was finally settled in 1998 when Sarmcol/BTR agreed to pay R11,7m in compensation to the 970 workers they sacked in 1985.

You can read the very informative programme for the play here The Long March