Sally Groves, author of 'Trico: A Victory to Remember,The 1976 Equal Pay Strike at Trico Folberth, Brentford' and Louise Raw, author of 'Striking a Light: The Bryant and May Matchwomen and their Place in History', discuss their research and consider the role women have had, and continue to play, in workplace struggles.
Trico: A Victory to Remember. The 1976 Equal Pay Strike at Trico Folberth, Brentford'
This is the remarkable story, still relevant today, of four hundred women and their supporters who, in 1976, went on strike for 21 weeks to win equal pay with their male counterparts. It took place at the Brentford plant of Trico-Folberth, an American multinational producer of windscreen wipers. The strike was trail-blazing in many ways, and was essential to making women’s rights a central focus for the labour movement in the UK, a major turning point of the 1970s. Trico: A Victory to Remember is indispensable to understanding that shift. Illustrated with stunning archive photos mostly unseen for over forty years, the book charts the women’s campaign to their final victory, including anecdotes from some of those involved.
'Striking a Light: The Bryant and May Matchwomen and their Place in History'
In July 1888, fourteen hundred women and girls employed by the matchmakers Bryant and May walked out of their East End factory and into the history books. Louise Raw gives us a challenging new interpretation of events proving that the women themselves, not celebrity socialists like Annie Besant, began it. She provides unequivocal evidence to show that the matchwomen greatly influenced the Dock Strike of 1889, which until now was thought to be the key event of new unionism, and repositions them as the mothers of the modern labour movement. Returning to the stories of the women themselves, and by-interviewing-their relatives today, Raw is able to construct a new history which challenges existing accounts of the strike itself and radically alters the accepted history of the labour movement in Britain.