Burston bound

This year's Burston Strike School Rally is very nearly upon us...

Reading time: 3 min

In April 1914, Kitty and Tom Higdon, loved and respected teachers at Burston Village School in Norfolk, were sacked because of their socialist and trade union views.

The pupils walked out in support and from then until 1939 the villagers and the Higdons ran the ‘Strike School,’ providing an education for local children. Times have changed but the struggle in rural areas for economic justice continues.

The Burston Strike School (and yes that is the right way round!) came about from what was to become the longest strike in the UK.

Speakers are drawn far and wide from the trade union movement and this year’s focus is on the NHS’ doctors. But Burston is so important to Unite and this year Nick Troy from Unite Hospitality will be speaking. It’s fundamentally a rural and agricultural event so it comes as no surprise – certainly not to readers of the Landworker to find it’s editor, Amanda Campbell introducing some of the speakers and bands.

‘Celebs’ include John Hegley, the Red Flags, Clive Lewis MP and the legendary Hank Wangford – if anyone is old or odd enough to know who that is.

If you’ve never been it’s well worth going along for the experience – it’s certainly like no other. Try ‘walking the Candlestick’, listening to some inspiring speeches or just relaxing in a deck chair chatting to some great union folk while being entertained by some wonderful music. Whatever you like doing you’ll certainly have a lovely day.

So come and join Unite colleagues on Sunday September 3 to commemorate the longest strike in history and celebrate the people who continue to fight for trade union rights, working class education, democracy in the countryside and international solidarity.


See the Burston Strike School Facebook page

By Amanda Campbell