Sunday 22 November 2020

Sidney Dye MP - South West Norfolk MP

Sidney Dye MP

(4 August 1900 – 9 December 1958)

At 16 joined the National Union of Agricultural Workers, At 19 he was already secretary of Wells-next-the-Sea branch. 1919 he assisted the formation of Wells Labour Party.

Attended Ruskin College (Politics) and Elsinore (Denmark) International People's College to study agriculture

In 1924, Dye began working as a full-time Labour Party agent in Dover, then from 1926 until 1931 he was the agent for Cambridge.

He became a tenant farmer in Swaffam in 1932

In 1933 Sidney Dye (Swaffham) was selected Labour PPC for South West Norfolk. elected to Norfolk County Council in 1934 and Swaffham Rural District Council in 1935 Elected as South West Norfolk MP 1945 with a majority of just 53 votes.

Supported the "Popular Front" before WW2

In 1950, his majority increased to 260, but he was defeated in 1951 General Election. In the 1955 general Election, amazingly Sidney Dye regained the seat with a majority of 193, securing Labour's only gain of that election.

Dye had been a lay preacher and he was a founder of the Parliamentary Socialist Christian Group

Dye was tragically killed in a car accident in December 1958. At the subsequent byelection Labour's Albert Hilton retained the marginal seat. Hilton also an Agricultural Workers Union official and Methodist was born at South Walsham and Swaffham Union organiser