Sunday, November 6, 2016

Looking Back at the Grunwick Strike 1976-1978

(From Mary Quaile Club)
Grunwick Strike screening and speakers
Saturday 3rd December, 1pm to 3pm
Venue: Annexe at the Working Class Movement  Library, 51 Crescent, Salford M5  4WX

Photographs from A Place in History, by Colin Philpott (2012)
Forty years  ago in August 1976 six workers walked out of Grunwick Film Processing Laboratory in Willesden,  thereby igniting an historic two-year dispute.  They were soon joined by most of the workforce.
As the first workers left the factory, one – Jayaben Desai – offered a parting shot to the management: What you are running here is not a factory, it is a zoo. But in a zoo there are many types of animals. Some are monkeys who dance on your fingertips, others are lions who can bite your head off. We are the lions, Mr Manager.”
Thousands of trade unionists from around the country,  including miners,  came to the  aid of the mostly female  Asian work force, and it became one of the most bitterly fought trade union battles of the 1970s. On the picket lines police assaulted and arrested hundreds of trade unionists. [Pictures here and here]

At this event we will be screening a  60 minute documentary The Great Grunwick Strike, made in 2008  by Chris Thomas for Brent Trades Council. This  tells the story of the strike, and includes interview with the strikers and their supporters.

Our  speakers at this event will be
  • Sujata Aurora,  Chair of the Grunwick 40 Steering Group, an alliance of Brent-based trade unionists and community campaigners formed to mark the 40th anniversary of the Grunwick strike. She has been active in anti-racist and solidarity movements for three decades
  • Lisa Turnbull  from the Durham Teaching Assistants, a group of mainly women workers  who are facing huge wage cuts imposed by Labour-controlled Durham County Council and have voted overwhelmingly to strike.

Tea and cakes will be served at the end. Entrance is free with a collection to defray expenses. 

Seating is limited in the Annexe so to be sure of a seat at this event, please book in advance:
Previously on this blog:
Exhibitions - Striking Women: voices of South Asian Women from Grunwick and Gate Gourmet

1 comment:

  1. Public meeting on Strikers and Spycops:
    Undercover Policing at Grunwick
    Malet Suite, Student Central, 2nd Floor, Malet Street London WC1E 7HY
    Eventbrite link: