23 June 2021

Class war in 1892: Bristol dockers and Black Friday

In 1889, successful strikes by Bristol dock workers over pay and conditions led to a massive rise in membership of the newly formed dockers unions.

In the autumn of 1892 timber merchants based on the Floating Harbour, along with the strike-breaking Shipping Federation, launched a counter-offensive. Their aim was to smash the dockers unions and re-introduce the hated ‘piecework’.

In this talk, discover how the outcome led to a dramatic confrontation between strikers and the military on the streets of Bristol, commonly known as ‘Black Friday’.

Speaker: Roger Ball is a member of Bristol Radical History Group and a research fellow at UWE.

His publications include The Origins and an Account of Black Friday and the co-authored works 100 Fishponds Road: Life and death in a Victorian Workhouse and From Wulfstan to Colston: severing the sinews of slavery in Bristol.

This talk is part of M Shed’s 10th anniversary programme.

How to take part

This free, online talk will be held over Zoom. Please book your place below. Details of how to join the session will be in your registration email. Please check your spam folder if the email does not arrive. Bookings close at 2pm on Wednesday 23 June.

Although this talk is free, we would be grateful if you could consider making a donation.

Please visit the Zoom website for guidance on joining webinar. Please allow extra time before the talk begins to make sure everything is working correctly. It’s up to you whether you turn on your video but all guests will be muted once the talk begins. You are welcome to ask questions in the chat box throughout the talk.

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