President of the Trades Union Congress

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The President of the Trades Union Congress is a prominent but largely honorary position in British trade unionism.

Contents

History

Initially, the post of president was elected at the annual Trades Union Congress (TUC) itself, and would serve just for the duration of the congress. Early standing orders stated that preference had to be given to a candidate from the city where the congress was being held; they were not necessarily well-known figures. [1]

In 1900, the standing orders were changed to state that the presidency would be filled by the person who had chaired the Parliamentary Committee over the previous year. As a result, before 1900, numerous people served as Chair of the Parliamentary Committee without becoming President; after this date, Presidents were prominent figures in the national trade union movement. [2] The Parliamentary Committee was replaced by the General Council in 1921, and the system continued.

There were still rare occasions where the Chair did not become President. Margaret Bondfield, who was elected as Chair in 1923, resigned to accept a government post before becoming President. [3] George Isaacs, who was elected as Chair in 1944, similarly resigned to accept a government post, and was replaced by the vice-president, Ebby Edwards, who had presided over the previous year's congress. [4]

In recent years, the President has once more been elected at the annual congress, but now officially fills the office for the remainder of the year and then presides over the following year's conference (in the years listed below).

Presidents to 1899

George Potter, President in 1871 GeorgePotter.jpg
George Potter, President in 1871
Edwin Coulson, President in 1881 Edwin Coulson.jpg
Edwin Coulson, President in 1881
YearNameUnion
1868 William Henry Wood Manchester and Salford Trades Council
1869Thomas Wilkinson Flint Glass Makers Friendly Society
1871 George Potter London Working Men's Association
1872W. H. Leatherland Organised Trades Association
1873William Lishman Leeds Trades Council
1874 William Rolley Sheffield Federated Trades Council
1875James Fitzpatrick Liverpool Trades Council
1875 John Battersby Scottish Typographical Association
1876James C. Laird Newcastle Trades Council
1877 Daniel Merrick Leicester Trades Council
1878George Fowler Jones Bristol Trades Council
1879David Gibson Edinburgh and District Trades Council
1880John Murphy Friendly Society of Ironfounders
1881 Edwin Coulson Operative Bricklayers' Society
1882 Robert Austin Amalgamated Society of Engineers
1883Thomas Smith Amalgamated Society of Lithographic Printers
1884James Thompson Aberdeen Trades Council
1885 T. R. Threlfall Typographical Association
1886 Frederick Maddison Typographical Association
1887W. Bevan Amalgamated Society of Carpenters and Joiners
1888 Samuel Shaftoe Yorkshire United Skip, Basket and Hamper Makers Society
1889Robert Ritchie Dundee Trades Council
1890 William Matkin General Union of Carpenters and Joiners
1891 Thomas Burt Northumberland Miners' Association
1892 John Hodge British Steel Smelters Association
1893Samuel Munro Typographical Association
1894Frank Delves Amalgamated Society of Engineers
1895 John Jenkins Associated Shipwrights' Society
1896 John Mallinson Edinburgh Trades Council
1897 John Valentine Stevens National Amalgamated Association of Tin Plate Workers of Great Britain
1898 James O'Grady Amalgamated Union of Cabinet Makers
1899W. J. Vernon Typographical Association

Presidents from 1900

Will Thorne, President in 1912 Thorne-Will.jpg
Will Thorne, President in 1912
Jimmy Thomas, President in 1920 James Henry Thomas circa 1920.jpg
Jimmy Thomas, President in 1920
Ben Turner, President in 1928 Sir Ben Turner.jpg
Ben Turner, President in 1928
George Lowthian, President in 1964 Geroge Lowthian 1965-03-30 (cropped).jpg
George Lowthian, President in 1964
Fred Jarvis, President in 1987 Fred Jarvis.JPG
Fred Jarvis, President in 1987
Rodney Bickerstaffe, President in 1992 RodneyBickerstaffe - taken on Sunday 25 January 2015 in Russell Square, London.jpg
Rodney Bickerstaffe, President in 1992
Margaret Prosser, President in 1996 Official portrait of Baroness Prosser.jpg
Margaret Prosser, President in 1996
Mary Bousted, President in 2013 Dr Mary Bousted, General Secretary, ATL.jpg
Mary Bousted, President in 2013
YearNameUnion
1900 William Pickles National Amalgamated Society of House and Ship Painters
1901 C. W. Bowerman London Society of Compositors
1902 W. C. Steadman River Thames Barge Builders Trades Union
1903 W. Boyd Hornidge National Union of Boot and Shoe Operatives
1904 Richard Bell Amalgamated Society of Railway Servants
1905 James Sexton National Union of Dock Labourers
1906 D. C. Cummings United Society of Boilermakers
1907 Alfred Gill Bolton Cotton Spinners Association
1908 David Shackleton Northern Counties Amalgamated Association of Weavers
1909 David Shackleton Northern Counties Amalgamated Association of Weavers
1910 James Haslam Miners Federation of Great Britain
1911 William Mullin Amalgamated Association of Card and Blowing Room Operatives
1912 Will Thorne National Union of Gas Workers and General Labourers
1913 William John Davis Amalgamated Society of Brassworkers
1915 James Seddon National Amalgamated Union of Shop Assistants, Warehousemen and Clerks
1916 Harry Gosling National Transport Workers Federation
1917 John Hill United Society of Boilermakers
1918 John William Ogden Northern Counties Amalgamated Association of Weavers
1919 G. H. Stuart-Bunning Postmen's Federation
1920 Jimmy Thomas National Union of Railwaymen
1921 Edward L. Poulton National Union of Boot and Shoe Operatives
1922 Robert Barrie Walker National Union of Agricultural Workers
1923 Joe Williams Musicians Union
1924 Alf Purcell National Amalgamated Furnishing Trades Association
1925 Alonzo Swales Amalgamated Engineering Union
1926 Arthur Pugh Iron and Steel Trades Confederation
1927 George Hicks Amalgamated Union of Building Trade Workers
1928 Ben Turner National Union of Textile Workers
1929 Ben Tillett Transport and General Workers Union
1930 John Beard Transport and General Workers Union
1931 Arthur Hayday National Union of General and Municipal Workers
1932 John Bromley Associated Society of Locomotive Engineers and Firemen
1933 Alexander Walkden Railway Clerks' Association
1934 Andrew Conley National Union of Tailors and Garment Workers
1935 William Kean National Union of Gold, Silver and Allied Trades
1936 Alan Findlay United Patternmakers Association
1937 Ernest Bevin Transport and General Workers Union
1938 Herbert Henry Elvin National Union of Clerks and Administrative Workers
1939 Joseph Hallsworth National Union of Distributive and Allied Workers
1940 Bill Holmes National Union of Agricultural Workers
1941 George Gibson Mental Hospital and Institutional Workers Union
1942 Frank Wolstencroft Amalgamated Society of Woodworkers
1943 Anne Loughlin National Union of Tailors and Garment Workers
1944 Ebby Edwards Miners Federation of Great Britain
1945 Ebby Edwards National Union of Mineworkers
1946 Charles Dukes National Union of General and Municipal Workers
1947 George Walker Thomson Association of Engineering and Shipbuilding Draughtsmen
1948 Florence Hancock Transport and General Workers Union
1949 Will Lawther National Union of Mineworkers
1950 Herbert Bullock National Union of General and Municipal Workers
1951 Alfred Roberts National Association of Card, Blowing and Ring Room Operatives
1952 Arthur Deakin Transport and General Workers Union
1953 Tom O'Brien National Association of Theatrical and Kine Employees
1954 Jack Tanner Amalgamated Engineering Union
1955 Charles Geddes Union of Post Office Workers
1956 Wilfred Beard United Patternmakers Association
1957 Tom Williamson National Union of General and Municipal Workers
1958 Tom Yates National Union of Seamen
1959 Robert Willis London Typographical Society
1960 Claude Bartlett Confederation Of Health Service Employees
1961 Ted Hill United Society of Boilermakers
1962 Anne Godwin Clerical and Administrative Workers Union
1963 Frederick Hayday National Union of General and Municipal Workers
1964 George H. Lowthian Amalgamated Union of Building Trade Workers
1965 Harold Collison National Union of Agricultural Workers
1966 Joseph O'Hagan National Union of Blastfurnacemen, Ore Miners, Coke Workers and Kindred Trades
1967 Harry Douglass Iron and Steel Trades Confederation
1968 Lewis Wright Amalgamated Weavers' Association
1969 John E. Newton National Union of Tailors and Garment Workers
1970 Sidney Greene National Union of Railwaymen
1971 Jack Cooper National Union of General and Municipal Workers
1972 George Smith Union of Construction, Allied Trades and Technicians
1973 Joseph Crawford National Association of Colliery Overmen, Deputies and Shotfirers
1974 Alfred Allen Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers
1975 Marie Patterson Transport and General Workers Union
1976 Cyril Plant Inland Revenue Staff Federation
1977 Danny McGarvey [5] Amalgamated Society of Boilermakers, Shipwrights, Blacksmiths and Structural Workers
1977 Marie Patterson Transport and General Workers Union
1978 David Basnett National Union of General and Municipal Workers
1979 Thomas Jackson Union of Post Office Workers
1980 Terry Parry Fire Brigades Union
1981 Alan Fisher National Union of Public Employees
1982 Alan Sapper Association of Cinematograph Television and Allied Technicians
1983 Frank Chapple Electrical, Electronic, Telecommunications and Plumbing Union
1984 Ray Buckton Associated Society of Locomotive Engineers and Firemen
1985 Jack Eccles General, Municipal, Boilermakers and Allied Trade Union
1986 Ken Gill Technical, Administrative and Supervisory Section
1987 Fred Jarvis National Union of Teachers
1988 Clive Jenkins Manufacturing, Science and Finance
1989 Tony Christopher Inland Revenue Staff Federation
1990 Ada Maddocks National and Local Government Officers Association
1991 Alec Smith GMB Union
1992 Rodney Bickerstaffe National Union of Public Employees
1993 Alan Tuffin Union of Communication Workers
1994 Jimmy Knapp National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers
1995 Leif Mills Banking, Insurance and Finance Union
1996 Margaret Prosser Transport and General Workers Union
1997 Tony Dubbins Graphical, Paper and Media Union
1998 John Edmonds GMB Union
1999 Hector Mackenzie Unison
2000 Rita Donaghy Unison
2001 Bill Morris Transport and General Workers Union
2002 Tony Young Communication Workers Union
2003 Nigel de Gruchy National Association of Schoolmasters Union of Women Teachers
2004 Roger Lyons Amicus
2005 Jeannie Drake Communication Workers Union
2006 Gloria Mills Unison
2007 Alison Shepherd Unison
2008 Dave Prentis Unison
2009Sheila Bearcroft GMB Union
2010 Dougie Rooney Unite
2011 Michael Leahy Community
2012 Paul Kenny GMB Union
2013Lesley Mercer Chartered Society of Physiotherapy
2014Mohammad Taj Unite
2015Leslie Manasseh Prospect
2016Liz Snape Unison
2017 Mary Bousted Association of Teachers and Lecturers
2018 Sally Hunt University and College Union
2019 Mark Serwotka Public and Commercial Services Union
2020 Ged Nichols Accord
2021 Gail Cartmail Unite
2022Sue Ferns Prospect
2023Maria Exall Communication Workers' Union

See also

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References

  1. Trades Union Congress, Annual Report of the 1874 Trades Union Congress
  2. Trades Union Congress, Annual Report of the 1900 Trades Union Congress, pp.94-95
  3. Daniel Fairchild Calhoun, The United Front!: The TUC and the Russians, 1923-1928, p.46
  4. Trades Union Congress, Annual Report of the 1945 Trades Union Congress, p.23
  5. John Kerr, "Sir Daniel McGarvey - 'boots' to union boss", The Guardian , 27 April 1977, p.3: McGarvey died in office