The Miners’ Lockout

This image comes from a recent addition to Bishopsgate Institute archives: a photo album bearing the inscription ‘Memories of the Miners Lock-out 1926 Fife’ (Ref: Labour History Manuscripts/67).

Man standing amid a crowd sitting on the grass with drums - taken from an album of photos of the 1926 general strike.

The Miners’ Lockout was part of the General Strike of 1926, called by the General Council of the TUC (Trades Union Congress) in an attempt to prevent the Government of the day from lowering the wages and making conditions worse for some 800,000 coal miners nationwide. The album contains 35 photographs in all, some with annotations describing who and what is pictured. Taken in June and July of 1926, the photographs depict marches, demonstrations, speakers (including the trade unionist Arthur James Cook, 1883-1931) and the crowds they gathered, fundraising events held on behalf of the miners including a fancy dress parade, sports day and an open-air concert, and images of miners’ houses in the Methil neighbourhood of Fife. Mention is made of the Methil Trades & Labour Council, organisations referred to as the CPGB (Communist Party of Great Britain), Young Communist League (YCL) and the JCWPA.

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