GLATUC 125th anniversary - 125 Years of the Trades London Council Movement (PDF 4.29 Mb)
Will be further articles to follow shortly
The People Organised is a pamphlet about trade unionists in WW2, produced by a previous GLATUC delegate, EC Member & Officer Phil Katz - (Now working at NUT) (PDF 1.13 Mb)
Historical documents of london trades council (Word 174k)

The Greater London Association of Trade Union Councils (GLATUC) is the inheritor of a long and proud history.

It is the successor body to the London Trades Council. The LTC was founded in 1860 as one of the first Trades Councils in the country. It was instrumental with other Trades Councils - particularly Manchester and Salford - in setting up the TUC. It had a prominent role in the various working class struggles in the capital and nationally. In the 1860s it assisted in the set-up of the International Working Men's Association (the "First International"). It became closely involved in the struggles of New Unionism - in the docks, the match girls, gas workers. It took a leading role in opposing the use of troops in industrial disputes.

Through all the struggles of the 1900s, the LTC took a leading role - including the period of intense struggle from 1919 to the General Strike of 1926 - and on in to the 30s, 40s and 50s. In the Second World War it campaigned for equal pay for women workers mobilized for the war effort. It promoted increased production in combination with a greater say for workers in organizing production. In 1941 it organized a rally in Trafalgar Square supporting the Soviet Union, thus laying the foundations for the Second Front campaign. In the post-war period it campaigned for the nationalization of the mines, electricity supply and transport. In the 1950s the LTC was in conflict with the TUC and the London Federation of Trades Councils was set up. In 1962 Willesden Trades Council (now within Brent) was the last meeting addressed by Nelson Mandela before his return to South Africa and prison. The London Federation and GLATUC, its successor, helped found and remain central to anti-apartheid campaigning in Britain.

GLATUC, formed in 1974 to succeed the London Federation, cut its teeth in the miner's strikes and anti-Tory battles of the 1970s and then the long haul in the face of the Thatcher/Major onslaught from 1979 to 1997. Every sector was involved in one way or another - health, civil service, miners, print, rail, tube, bus, steel, ship, office, finance, shop, cleaners, photo processing, education, local government, post, telecommunications, car and many other workers fought against the Tory attacks on jobs, conditions and democracy and for the future of trade unionism itself. GLATUC was involved in all struggles and organised support out in the community.

In the 1990s we supported key disputes like the Merseyside dockers, the Magnet lockout and the PriceCheck recognition campaign and, more recently, Ford Dagenham, SkyChef Heathrow, London's tube, the National Health Service and the Post Office. We also sponsored the Campaign for a People's London, pressing for the creation of a democratic Greater London Authority, and Greater London Against Maastricht, which raises the dangers of monetary and political union in Western Europe. We work closely with the transport unions in building the case for publicly-owned rail, tube, bus and air traffic control in London.

GLATUC has been proud to be a leading organisation in the continuation of the London May Day March on May 1st each year, as a mark of its commitment to genuine international trade union solidarity and building unity within the working class movement in London. It took a leading role against the military coup in Chile and in support of workers in Ireland and is active in maintaining rank-and-file relations between workers across the world.

Today we are building trade union organisation, supporting today's struggles and forming ties with representatives of London's many communities.