Saturday 24 March 2007

Fred James - Dorset

Fred James

Fred C James of Dorchester, was born the son of a Dorset Shepherd

A member of the Salvation Army, worked as a foreman in a Coal yard

In 1917 he helped establish a Dorchester branch of the agricultural workers union and became first branch secretary

Helped organise some of the first Tolpuddle celebrations

Dorchester councillor
Fred James was twice Mayor of Dorchester

and a Dorset County Councillor

victimised as a result of his trade union activities

30 years Dorset National Union of Agricultural Workers (NAWU) District Organiser (prior to Arthur Jordan who was appointed in 1945)

Credited with organising (along with Mr A. Hawkins) the 1934 TUC Centenary Commemoration pageant in Dorchester on Saturday 1st September 1934 of village life over the previous 100 years

The pageant composed of 23 tableaux, including the formation of the Grand Lodge at Tolpuddle in 1833-34, The formation by Joseph Arch of the National Agricultural Labourers Union(1872), The rise of the National Union of Agricultural Workers (1906), and a glimpse of the work of the Agricultural wages Committee, and other aspects of trade union service and modern aspects of working class life in the rural area