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Chainmakers' strike remembered

ACTIVISTS united at the weekend to celebrate women’s vital role in trade unions was marked at the weekend in homage to the bravery of the chainmakers’ strike of 1910, writes Joanne Stevenson.

Led by trade unionist and women’s rights activist Mary Macarthur, the chainmakers of Cradley Heath, West Midlands, walked out on a 10-week strike against “starvation wages” and demanded better working conditions.

The strike ended in a landmark victory, giving thousands of women workers the right to a fair wage.

TUC assistant general secretary Kay Carberry spoke at the 10th annual event on Saturday in Cradley Heath with music and a theatre marquee, a craft fair, stalls and exhibitions.

Entertainment included a play by Open Door Theatre Company, the comedy Robby Nudd, loosely based on a story of Robin Hood.

And trade unionists marched through the working-class town with banners flying for the Friday night with the Chainmakers music event.

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