Party News Briefs

May Day in London was successful and the keenness of members was very heartening. Several came from Wickford and sold STANDARDS outside Hyde Park, whilst others sold literature along the route of the Trades Council procession and then remained selling in Trafalgar Square. Literature was well displayed by the many comrades outside Hyde Park and sales were quite good. A well decorated trolley was the main platform in the Park where a constant audience listened to several speakers and put good questions to the platform. At the same time another good meeting was held at our usual platform. Handbills for the evening meeting in Conway Hall were distributed. This meeting was well attended and a good collection and further literature sales added to the successful outdoor efforts of the afternoon.

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Camberwell and South-West London members held a successful meeting on Clapham Common from 3 p.m. till 6 p.m. A good audience and literature sales are reported. Members hope to continue regular meetings on Clapham Common on Sunday afternoons throughout the summer.

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May Day Week-end in Nottingham. The Branch held its first meeting on the Saturday evening—mainly to advertise the meetings on Sunday. The meeting commenced at 7 p.m. and continued until 9.45. The audience fluctuated between 150 and 250.

On Sunday morning the Labour Party and Trades Council procession assembled in Old Market Square just before 11 a.m. Before the procession left for the Forest, our members sold SOCIALIST STANDARDS. Following the Labour procession were a motley group of “Communists,” between five and 50 years of age, and led by a very ancient car, containing a gramophone, playing a much worn record of the “Red Flag.”

At 3 p.m. we commenced our May Day meetings proper—against some noisy opposition from a group of “Faith Healers”—complete with piano accordion and tambourine! Our speakers dealt with the origin of the May Day festivities and their later adoption by the working-class organisations and with the activities of two of the allegedly working-class parties in this country—the Communist Party and the Labour Party. As the meeting progressed our alternative to the present system of society was fully developed. The audience was between 200 and 300. The meeting terminated at 5.30 p.m. and re-commenced soon after six o’clock when the meeting was forced to close (mainly due to the noise caused by a Salvation Army band). The audience throughout this meeting was nearly 500 and literature sales were very good.

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Glasgow and Kelvingrove Branches have just concluded their most promising indoor propaganda season since the war. Indoor propaganda is difficult to sustain and indeed, we are the only Party that even attempts to run weekly meetings in Glasgow. But this year consistency and perseverance were rewarded, attendances, literature sales and collections were good, especially in March and April. Members are now looking forward to the summer outdoor propaganda season with lighter hearts and more determination in the ranks than has been evident for some time.

Hopes were high for a successful May Day, but the weather decreed otherwise. Comrade May held an audience of more than 100 for over an hour in the pelting rain at Queen’s Park before being forced to give up. Despite the weather our evening meeting at St Andrews Hall was a good one. Although the audience was only about 90, questions were good and discussion lively. Over £2 worth of literature was sold and the collection was £4. Weather permitting, meetings will be held every Sunday at 8 p.m. on West Regent Street Glasgow Comrades are asked to support these meetings and continue the good work that has been started during the winter months.

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Ealing Branch. The special drive to sell the SOCIALIST STANDARD has got off to an excellent start. At the time of going to press (16th May) the Brandi’s previous record monthly total (53 dozen) has already been exceeded. The Branch has ordered 80 dozen SOCIALIST STANDARDS altogether and is optimistic that they will sell them. The response to our canvassers has been very favourable and an average of 40-50 copies have been sold on each canvass.

Members are reminded that the Branch’s annual outing is on 10th June. This time we shall be going to Littlehampton. There are now only a few seats left on the coach and members wishing to take the trip are asked to let the Secretary know as soon as possible.

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The Secretary of Ealing Branch has recently been in contact with Comrade Vic Heeley, of Manchester Branch, who, many members may recall, was responsible for the stupendously high sales of our pamphlet “Principles and Policy” in his home area a few years ago. Mainly by canvassing, he succeeded in getting our literature into countless working-class homes, but was forced to give up for a time due to personal and domestic circumstances.

He has lately recommenced this work and promises to make a really big assault during May. If all goes well he should sell a large number of SOCIALIST STANDRDS and other literature throughout the month, and he assures us that this is only the beginning.

But his work does not end there. He has bean constant and searching critic of Labour and Tory policies in the correspondence columns of the local Manchester Press had has had a series of letters published—much to the annoyance of some of his opponents.

These “lone wolf” activities are invaluable to Comrades living in areas where no local brandies exist, and can give them the satisfaction of helping forward the Socialist case in a practical manner. Here then is a suggested way in which isolated members can quite easily extend their efforts for the Party. The appropriate committee at Head Office will be pleased to give assistance and advice.

P. H.

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