The Testing of Political and Union Loyalties

Hester Barron

in The 1926 Miners' Lockout

Published in print November 2009 | ISBN: 9780199575046
Published online February 2010 | e-ISBN: 9780191722196 | DOI:

Series: Oxford Historical Monographs

The Testing of Political and Union Loyalties

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This chapter begins by examining the miner's relationship with his union, at both county (DMA) and national (MFGB) levels, including the appeal of the charismatic leader A. J. Cook. It outlines the basic concerns of the locked out miners, which the union was so effective in articulating. The chapter then considers the appeal of other ideologies: that of the Labour Party, and the less widespread appeal of Communism; but also those not traditionally associated with mining communities—namely, Conservatism and paternalism. Finally, it explores the motives of the small minority of men who blacklegged. The evidence presented fractures the conventional historical picture of a community united by political outlook. However, for the vast majority of miners, some kind of attachment to their union underpinned all, and other ideologies had to work in conjunction with the union to ensure support.

Keywords: Durham Miners' Association; Miners' Federation of Great Britain; A. J. Cook; Labour Party; Communism; Conservative Party; paternalism; blacklegs; strike‐breakers

Chapter.  25204 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Modern History (1700 to 1945)

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