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Tolpuddle Festival gets our East Coast message

23 August 2013

Last month, members from across the country travelled to the small Dorset village of Tolpuddle for the TUC-organised festival, commemorating the pivotal case of the six farm labourers deported to Australia in 1834 for daring to form a trade union.

The festival has grown in recent years, with a mix of socialising, learning about the work of other unions and debates about the future of the movement. TSSA general secretary Manuel Cortes joined his opposite number at ASLEF, Mick Whelan, and Shadow Transport Secretary Maria Eagle in a debate about public ownership of the railway.

Saturday night saw the now traditional TSSA barbeque held jointly with reps from ASLEF, Hope Not Hate and tutors who train our reps.

TSSA’s campaign to Keep East Coast Public was out in force, with over 1,000 people signing up to the campaign. The ‘ghost train’ joined the festival’s march through the village, with local and union members alike cheering our message on protecting station staff.


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