Under this tree in the picturesque Dorset village of Tolpuddle history was made.
In 1834 six farm labourers met here to discuss ways of improving their working conditions. They were arrested, convicted on a trumped up charge of swearing a false oath and deported to Australia. Their offence? Forming the world’s first association to fight for a living wage from their wealthy employers.
Eventually after a public outcry, the government was forced to give a free pardon which was followed by mass celebrations. The modern Trade Union movement was born.
Working people all over the world owe these six brave heroes a huge debt of gratitude.
David Lawrence Preston, 2017
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