Party News Briefs
The Overseas Secretary has been asked by the Executive Committee to co-operate with the Editorial Committee in preparing a short leaflet suitable for translation into foreign languages. Its purpose is to introduce the party to workers abroad. The Overseas Secretary wants to get in touch with members competent to translate the statement. Write to him, or contact him personally, at Head Office. It is urgent.
May-Day Meetings were successful both in London and Glasgow. Manchester report has not yet arrived. In London there were 400 at the Central Hall, Islington, on May 1st, and about 1,000 at the Metropolitan Theatre on Sunday, May 4th. Total collections were £54 and literature sales approximately £16. Bad weather and the action of the police in stopping all literature sales in Hyde Park on Sunday, kept our literature sales down for the day. Before 1939 the Hyde Park regulations which forbid the sale of literature were not so rigidly enforced on May Day, but the attitude of the police now is a very different one. As usual our outdoor meetings in Hyde Park on Sunday afternoon were better supported than the counter attractions provided by Labour and Communist “stars.” In Glasgow we had 400 in the Central Halls, Bath Street, and there was a bright meeting with a barrage of stimulating questions about the party. Literature sales were good. The traditional May Day procession during the afternoon was poorly supported and must have been uninspiring to its organisers. The workers can hardly be expected to respond enthusiastically to appeals to work harder.
The Treasurer reports a continually sinking amount of party funds in the bank. Our activities are increasing all the time and we need a lot more money. There are three funds open for contributions, the General, Parliamentary and Provincial Organisers’ Funds. If the party is to continue to progress you must provide the financial backing.
The Socialist Party of Canada is giving us the issues they have in stock of the Western Socialist for the period prior to the date of its transfer to the Workers’ Socialist Party of U.S.A. The Literature Secretary will have these for disposal when they arrive.
The Annual Conference was successful all round and showed a favourable financial balance of over £13.
A National Party Poster is being considered by the Executive Committee to act as a counter-blast to the Government’s “Work or Want” poster. “We work sometimes but want always ” has been suggested.
Kingston-on-Thames group is now a branch, and is getting to work straight away with two outdoor meetings a week (Saturday evenings, Castle Street, Kingston, and Sunday afternoons at Hampton Court). An educational class is being run after branch business is completed on Wednesday evenings. Suitable branch premises have not been obtained yet, but the Co-operative Society’s rooms at Hampton Wick are being used once a fortnight, and on the alternate week the branch meets at 19, Spencer Road, East Molesey. Dates of meetings will be announced in the branch directory.
The Publicity Committee organised a sales drive for Socialist Standards of the January and February issues. A loud speaker van was used and sales made at a large public meeting. Surplus Standards of the two months were sent to Emergency Training Colleges and secondary schools throughout the country. The campaign is to continue with the March and April issues.
Hackney Branch invited local Labour Party officials and M.P.’s to their “We challenge the Labour Party” meeting on May 9th. Those who replied found themselves “unable”(?) to be there owing to other engagements.
Paddington Branch had the unusual and arresting title of “Workers and Labour Pains” for their meeting at Paddington Town Hall on May 8th.
Leyton Branch have started a Socialist Standard canvassing campaign in their area. Other branches had excellent results with these canvasses last summer.
Bloomsbury Branch are running outdoor meetings at Warren Street (a few yards from the Underground station) on Wednesday evenings and have C. Lestor talking to them on “The Materialist Conception of History and Music” at Head Office at 8.30 p.m. on Thursday, June 5th. He will illustrate his lecture with gramophone records.
(Branches, officials and sub-committees who have items for these notes must give them to the General Secretary by the 8th of the month preceding issue. Publication cannot be guaranteed owing to shortage of space).
C. C. Groves,