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E. Hardcastle

Activities at Home and Abroad

Excitement in Stepney

On Friday, January 20th, Stepney Branch held a meeting at Whitechapel Library. The speaker, Comrade Cash, took as his subject, "Why I left the Communist Party." A large audience assembled, some of whom were Communists, who did their best by heckling and shouting to prevent the speaker getting a hearing. When the Chairman asked the leader of the disturbers to leave the meeting he (the Chairman) was threatened with a baton, and, for a while, pandemonium reigned. However, the Socialist Party members present proved themselves more than capable of dealing with the situation, and, in spite of this display of organised hooliganism, the meeting was a success, many people being turned away through lack of accommodation.

It is clear that the Socialist Party of Great Britain is beginning to make its influence felt in Stepney.

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The Passing of a Founder Member

We regret to have to record that our old Comrade Hardcastle passed away on September 15 at the age of 93. He was one of the only two survivors of the group that founded the Socialist Party of Great Britain in 1904.

Comrade Hardcastle attended nearly all of the Party Conferences and was present at the last one. He also attended many of the indoor and outdoor propaganda meetings, putting in a regular attendance at Clapham Common. During the last two years failing eyesight limited his attendance at evening meetings, as it was too much of a risk for him to travel far in the darkness. He was a lively, tough little man, who never lost his conviction of the ultimate success of the movement he helped to start on its journey.

In the last week of the illness that brought his life to a close his brain was still alert and he demanded news of all that was happening in the world at large—including the latest developments over Suez.

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