Tolpuddle Festival 17-19 July 2015

1407Tolpuddle349The struggle of the six Tolpuddle Martyrs is celebrated with a three day festival in the small village of Tolpuddle in Dorset every year, culminating with a march through the village on the Sunday.

The Topuddle story
In the 1830s life in villages like Tolpuddle was hard and getting worse. Farm workers could not bear yet more cuts to their pay. In 1834, farm workers in west Dorset formed a trade union. Unions were lawful and growing fast but six leaders of the union were arrested and sentenced to seven years’ transportation for taking an oath of secrecy.

A massive protest swept across the country. Thousands of people marched through London and many more organised petitions and protest meetings to demand their freedom. The protest campaign proved successful and the Tolpuddle Martyrs returned home in triumph.

The Tolpuddle story is about how ordinary working people combined together to defend their families. The idea of solidarity as a basic human right is now an international demand.

12. tolpuddle
Napo at Tolpuddle 2014

Napo at Tolpuddle
Napo always has a good presence at Tolpuddle through a loyal contingent from Hampshire and IOW Branch. This year we also plan to have a stall and we will be liaising with the branch about staffing it. If you are interested in going to Tolpuddle and would like to volunteer to do a few hours on the stall while you are there let us know – kfalcon@napo.org.uk.
For more information on Tolpuddle 2015 and to register to attend visit the website

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