Mary Quaile, the TUC and Easton Lodge, 1926

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  Margaret Bondfield, Countess of Warwick and Mary Quaile in grounds of Easton Lodge


Margaret Bondfield, Countess of Warwick and Mary Quaile in grounds of Easton Lodge

Guest post from the Mary Quaile Club https://maryquaileclub.wordpress.com/
History, activism and discussion in the Greater Manchester area @MaryQuaileClub

In 1924 Mary Quaile was elected onto the General Council of the TUC, and with Julia Varley attended the National Conference of Labour Women, a conference of International Women Trade Unionists in Vienna and the Third International Trade Union Congress.

At home she now took part in delegations to lobby government ministers on issues including the Labour Government’s unemployment policy. In 1925 Mary was again elected onto the General Council. In 1926 Mary did not stand again for the General Council, but she continued to attend Congress as a delegate from the TGWU until 1931.

Recently we have come across pictures of Mary at the official handover of Easton Lodge to the trade union movement as a working class college. Ironically, a house maybe not that different from where she got her first job as a domestic.

Easton Lodge was owned by Countess Warwick (1861-1938) who, by 1926, had been a member of the socialist movement for over 25 years. It was an era in which a Countess standing as a prospective Labour candidate was not seen as bizarre!

TUC General Council with Mary Quaile on the right  on the right

TUC General Council with Mary Quaile on the right on the right

In 1926 Countess Warwick handed over the historic building and sumptuous park and grounds to the General Council of the TUC who paid a visit. It was dubbed “Labour’s Chequers.”

(Photos from the TUC Library Collections)

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Material on wages in the TUC Library Collections

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A selection of boxes on the subject of wages, from 1893 to the present.

The New Year has seen a number of news stories about wages in the UK – from the High Pay Centre’s statistics that by 4th January 2017 CEO’s had already amassed the same wages as the average Briton’s salary for the whole year, to Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn’s call for a maximum wage cap.

The TUC Library contains collections on Britain’s wage rates since the late 19th century, as can be seen in the photo above which shows just one of our many shelves on the topic.

We also have contemporary material from the High Pay Centre, the Low Pay Commission, the Incomes Data Service and a broad range of think tanks, charities, government departments, academic studies, and of course from the TUC and unions.

A small selection of recent publications on wages

To find out more about what the library contains on this or any other topic, or to arrange an appointment to visit, get in touch.

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