A menu from a 1935 bazaar in aid of The Daily Worker
The Daily Worker, the newspaper of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Great Britain, launched its first issue on 1 January 1930. This quoted Lenin: ‘Without a political organ, a movement deserving to be called a political movement is impossible in modern Europe'.
It was attacked the next day in a leader in The Times. The Daily Worker's first editor William Rust later recalled: ‘In later years, during the period of the common fight against Hitler Fascism, The Times, which in 1930 had expressed its alarm at our appearance, was itself denounced as being nothing more or less than a ‘threepenny edition of the Daily Worker' by a Conservative MP. But the Daily Worker, I am happy to say, has never been described as a penny edition of The Times'.
The Library has excellent holdings of the newspaper although there are some gaps - a particularly frustrating example being the latter half of 1936, during the Spanish Civil War. The Daily Worker has a gap of its own when was banned by the Government in January 1941 until September 1942.
The Daily Worker became The Morning Star in April 1966.
This menu is signed by:
*Harry Pollitt, originally from Droylsden, who had played a leading part in the launch of The Daily Worker. His family had been active in radical politics in Lancashire since the early 19th century. He was elected general secretary of the Communist Party of Great Britain in 1929.
*Willie Gallacher, a Scottish communist who had been opposed to Britain becoming involved in World War I. He was one of the leading figures of the Shop Stewards' Movement in wartime Glasgow (the 'Red Clydeside' period) and a founding member of the Communist Party of Great Britain.
. From 1924 to 1929 he was president of the National Minority Movement - an organisation with the aim of increasing communist influence throughout the trade unions. He was acclaimed as the greatest labour agitator and orator of his time.
Alice Smethurst and Pat Bowker, Friends of the Library, recall local Daily Worker fundraising bazaars from a later period. ‘There was always a craft stall with wooden toys you could not buy anywhere else, for example wooden Russian dolls, wooden games like pecking birds. The homemade cakes and jams were always popular as was the art stall. Molly Wilde was famous for her knitwear, she spent the year knitting for the next event. The bookstall had political books and pamplets which were not easy to buy elsewhere. Tea and cake was always served.
This may seem a bit dull but in the late ‘50s and early ‘60s my children had few toys - they really liked the wooden toys which could be played with without breaking for a long time'.
The toys in the case in our hall are on loan from Alice Smethurst.
Other resources on this website
Click here to go to the Communism page
Click here to go to the page about Tom Mann