Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Kier Hardie - Uxbridge UDC Elections 1912

West London Independent Labour Party (ILP)
Rally Uxbridge Town Hall 22 March 1912

Speaker Kier Hardie MP leader of the Labour Party.
Chairman Councillor L.W. Spencer (Uxbridge Labo
ur Party)

supported by Labour council candidates for Uxbridge
Mr Ernest Alford Cave (Head Master - St Andrews Boys High School) , James Cochrane (Electrician - 20 Belmont Road), William Arthur Herbert (Carpenter & Joiner - 11 Tachbrook Road), Robert Weller Hudson (Commercial Clerk - Rockingham Road) , Frederick Charles Rolfe (Tanner - 5 & 6 Cross Street), Thomas Rowley (Friendly Society Manager - 21 Tachbrook Road) , Frederick James Youens (Painter - 12 Lawn Road)

Labour standing on a platform of council housing, allotments, employment rights, bathing, sanitation, and free library

"Labour's practical programme for improvements and reform"

Despite threats of violence from Labour's opponents ( Local Tories had been smashing up suffragette meetings locally) the meeting went ahead However, Kier Hardie was unable to attend due to urgent Parliamentary business.

Uxbridge ILP meeting at Rockingham Hall

L. W Spencer elected to Uxbridge UDC in 1910 with 345 votes

"They (Labour) were nothing like so well organised as their opponents on the polling day

The Labour men were only assisted by two side cars attached to motor cycles

Rival Forces at Uxbridge Pump March 1912

Saturday XX March 1912 must be recorded as a day of days in the history of local politics writes "One who as there" Never has such scenes been witnessed at the pump, never has pandemonium reigned as strongly, never has feeling run so high, and never have the inhabitants of Windsor Street heard such uproar. The cause of it all was simple. For the first time in the town's history Labour was making a determined effort to be strongly represented on Uxbridge Urban district council and the members of Uxbridge Constitutional (Conservative) Club making a determined effort to keep them out

Both sides had been working hard all the previous week, and both had decided to hold a final rally at the Pump on Saturday. The great day came, and the labour party got possession first, in fact they had been "holding the fort" from thee o'clock. from an early hour in the evening, their candidates addressed an immense crowd, and every thing went along smoothly until shortly after eight O'clock. then the trouble began. a large van came round the corner at a run, to serve as a platform for an Anti-Socialist speaker and pulled up a few yards from where the Labour men had their pitch. Then there was an uproar.. The Labour supporters in a body attacked the van but quickly Councillor L.W. Spencer mounted his rostrum and with the light of indignation in his eyes fast the vast crowd "Friends and comrades, "Shouted he "Will you hear me!"
"Yes" roared back the crowd.
"Then" rejoined Mr Spencer amidst absolute silence "I wish to say just this; These people have come here to try to upset our meeting (cheers and counter cheers) I did all I possibly could to come to an amicable arrangement with them, and have here the correspondence with Mr Lovibond, but they would not have any of it. Our meeting was arranged weeks ago and we claim the right to have this meeting, and here we are going to stop (Loud Cheers), these brief remarks aroused the indignation of the Labour supporters. "Out with the van" shouted one, and a party of stalwarts made an ugly rush towards the vehicle and quickly started pushing it up the street. Mr D. H. Grimsdale clambered on to it. and was met with a storm of hissing and booing such as never greeted him before, His appearance seemed to rouse the crowd to further action, so that another rush was made and the vehicle went up on two wheels. Mr Grimsdale somewhat ungracefully but safely scrambled out in the nick of time and by climbing on to the church rails was soon safe,
Then the police thought it time to step in and it was well that they did so, or the results might have been serious. They advised that the offending van should be removed and the Conservatives amidst the ironical cheers of their opponents slowly dragged the vehicle away and the Labour men cheered and cheered again.
They had won the first round and for a time held undisputed possession ion of the field, But not for long, The Conservatives returned with a "rostrum" which they pitched some little distance away and then the row recommenced.
Mr Grimesdale essayed to speak but his voice was drowned by the hissing and booing of the crowd, which had swelled considerably. He gave up the attempt and called upon Mr Temple of the Anti-Socialist Union. Shortly before ten Mr Grimesdale called for the National Anthem and the anti-Socialist meeting closed. The Labour Party continued and their candidates having spoken the meeting closed after six hours

It was a never to forgotten night

Buckinghamshire Advertiser March 1912

Ernest Alfrod Cave Election statement

My message is - "To Dread Nought, but to make War, not indeed on the Germans, but on social germs - the germs of disease, destitution, and despair, and therefore, directly or indirectly, to provide our workers with more and better cottages, let at lower rates; with a higher wage and more leisure; with open spaces and playing fields, baths, gardens, reading rooms and a free library; to rouse our religious bodies to take closer share in the religious work; to show That a "little Englander" is a "Great Imperialist" and that under rated sites left to "ripen" means means under rated "souls" left to rot; and finally to ask the people of Uxbridge to retain this programme as evidence of the sincerity of Uxbridge Labour Party - Ernest Cave - Uxbridge Labour Party March 1912

Councillor L.W. Spencer
Labour Councillor L.W, "Leonard" Spencer
(Uxbridge ILP Secretary)would lose his life in the Great War, shot through the head by a German snipper on the 1st September 1915, he is buried at Longuenesse St Omer, France.

Hayes Urban District Council Labour Candidates 1912

John William Gordon "Trevose" Cromwell Road (Insurance Agent)
Percy Vere Osbourne Langton 18 Angel Lane, Hayes End (Clerk) (Elected)
Frederick Victor Mason 6 Silverdale Road (Machinist)

Alfred James Kirkby 15 South View, Blyth Road, Hayes - (Fitter & Turner) nominated by Henry Palmer and Frederick James Stiff (so must have been Labour) withdrew.