Saturday 24 February 2007

Ruth Uzzell - Oxfordshire

First Women Labour Councillor – Oxford

Ruth Uzzell was one of the many gifted working-class women who found in the Labour Movement a way to Ruth Uzzell was a Warwickshire woman

She joined the Independent Labour Party (ILP) in 1903, together with her husband she was prominent in the Labour and Co-operative Movements in Oxfordshire ;

Ruth Uzzell was the first woman to be elected to the Oxford City Council. Yet the cause of the farm workers was dearest and nearest to her, both her father and grand-father had been members of Joseph Arch's, National Agricultural Labourers Union formed in 1872

When a young girl she had worked as a servant in a farm house ; and her first meeting with George Edwards she afterwards spoke of as a red-letter day in her life.

Ruth Uzzell became a National Union of Agricultural Workers branch secretary, district and county committee secretary as well as a union National Executive Committee member for twenty-two years (1933-1945),

Her lively speeches were welcomed on Labour Party and N.U.A.W. platforms all over England and Wales. Ill health caused her to stand down from the union executive committee in 1945 and that same year she died, mourned by Labour folk all over the country,

Ruth Uzell was selfless and unswerving service to their class.

Source: Reg Groves: Sharpen the Sickle, the history of the Farm Workers Union