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Posts Tagged ‘1970s’

The Friends of the Earth organisation was founded in America in 1969, before coming to the UK in 1970/1971. There were local branches in Scotland by 1972 (Edinburgh) and a separate Scottish organisation was formed in 1978.

A branch in Aberdeen was founded in 1977.

Related entries: University of Aberdeen Friends of the Earth Society

References: website

Sources: unknown

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The Scottish Labour Party was a party of socialist independence, founded in late 1975/early 1976, by a revolt of Jim Sillars M.P. and a group of his colleagues against the Labour Party. The background was the 1974 elections, with the upsurge in Scottish National Party (S.N.P.) votes, and the reaction of the Labour Party thereafter, which struggled to come to a solution on what kind of devolution it wanted (if any). The view of the new party was that the Labour party was no longer socialist and that the S.N.P. would never be socialist. The initial aims of the Party was to secure the establishment of a powerful Scottish Parliament to work in full democratic partnership with the rest of the UK and represent Scotland in Europe. The other man aim was to ensure that the Scottish Parliament was capable of applying socialist solutions to the problems of modern Scotland.

The new party attracted many members in a very short time, from the Labour Party, The S.N.P. and from Trotskyist groups such as the Scottish Aggregate of the International Marxist Group (IMG) and the Scottish Workers’ Republican Party (SWRP). The party attracted members from all over Scotland, including in Aberdeen, where there were 2 branches: city and university. The branch membership was recorded as 14 in October 1976. The branch, as well as fighting on the issues of the national party, focussed on issues such as accommodation, disinvestment in companies involved in South Africa and student grants.

The Party had some local council electoral success, but in the 1979 General Election lost all 3 of its M.P.s. The party did not last long and experienced internal squabbles, expulsions and splits – meaning it was all over by 1981.

Related entries: Scottish Labour Party (Aberdeen)

References: Breakaway: The Scottish Labour Party (Henry Drucker, EUSPB, Edinburgh, 1978) and University Freshers’ magazines. Also, see below.

Sources: there are some ephemeral items in the papers of Dr Michael Dyer at University of Aberdeen Library.

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The Scottish Labour Party was a party of socialist independence, founded in late 1975/early 1976, by a revolt of Jim Sillars M.P. and a group of his colleagues against the Labour Party. The background was the 1974 elections, with the upsurge in Scottish National Party (S.N.P.) votes, and the reaction of the Labour Party thereafter, which struggled to come to a solution on what kind of devolution it wanted (if any). The view of the new party was that the Labour party was no longer socialist and that the S.N.P. would never be socialist. The initial aims of the Party was to secure the establishment of a powerful Scottish Parliament to work in full democratic partnership with the rest of the UK and represent Scotland in Europe. The other man aim was to ensure that the Scottish Parliament was capable of applying socialist solutions to the problems of modern Scotland.

The new party attracted many members in a very short time, from the Labour Party, the S.N.P. and from Trotskyist groups such as the Scottish Aggregate of the International Marxist Group (IMG) and the Scottish Workers’ Republican Party (SWRP). The party attracted members from all over Scotland, including in Aberdeen, where there were 2 branches: city and university. The city branch was based in Aberdeen Trade Union Council offices and membership was recorded as 31 in June 1976 (it was 46 by October 1976).

The Party had some local council electoral success, but in the 1979 General Election lost all 3 of its M.P.s. The party did not last long and experienced internal squabbles, expulsions and splits – meaning it was all over by 1981.

Related entries: Aberdeen University Scottish Labour Party

References: Breakaway: The Scottish Labour Party (Henry Drucker, EUSPB, Edinburgh, 1978). Also, see below.

Sources: there are some ephemeral items in the papers of Dr Michael Dyer at University of Aberdeen Library.

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In the 1970s and early 1980s, St Katherine’s Centre was a hub of community support activities such as the Welfare Rights Project and pressure groups such as The Right to Fuel Action Group and a branch of the Child Poverty Action Group. The Centre also housed a Women’s Centre, the Council of Tenants Association, Shelter and Jaw’s Wholefood Cafeteria.

St Katherine’s Club had originally been founded as a girls’ club in 1917 providing domestic, educational, recreational and religious activities. The club was initially based in a Shiprow tenement but soon moved to Broad Street and then in 1937 to a purpose built building in West North Street. After the Second World War the club became more of a community centre open to all, addressing the needs of working class communities. The Centre closed down in 1985 and was bought by the Council. It is now the Lemon Tree cultural venue.

References: “Education Through Recreation”: A History of St Katherine’s Club and Community Centre 1917 – 1985 (Lisa G Savijn , undated, c.1990s)

Sources: unknown but there will be related City Council papers in Aberdeen City Archives.

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A society that formed in July 1971 as a branch of the national Conservation Society, which had been formed in London in 1966 (and prior to Friends of the Earth or Greenpeace). The society took action on issues such as the husbandry of natural resources, the avoidance of pollution and also family planning and population. The President was Dr Dugald Baird. The society also ran adult education classes on relevant topics.

The national society existed until 1987.

References: Aberdeen Press and Journal.

Sources: unknown. There are some papers of the national body held at Sheffield City Archives.

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A society formed in Aberdeen around 1958 with University of Aberdeen lecturer Margaret Knight as the driving force (she was President). She was a speaker at many group events alongside guest speakers such as Dr Dugald Baird and Labour M.P. Robert Hughes.

There was also at the same time a society at Aberdeen University.

Related entries: Aberdeen University Humanist Society and Margaret Knight.

References: Aberdeen Press and Journal.

Sources: unknown.

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A group that advertised in Aberdeen People’s Press in 1975. The advert stated the aim was ‘an attempt to promote radical Christian theology and Socialist theory’.

References: Aberdeen People’s Press, 1975.

Sources: unknown.

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