Unions Link Picket Lines in Bridgwater

Bridgwater trade union movement history was made this Monday, when a dozen UCU strikers from the Bridgwater College campus came over to join the RMT Bridgwater Bus Branch picket at the bus station. Secretary of Bridgwater Trades Council, Dave Chapple, said “Hopefully, meetings up, combining picket lines, solidarity visits, call them what you will, between two or more unions are happening all over the country right now.” Labour Economy spokesman for Bridgwater Town Council Cllr Mick Lerry (Victoria) added Trade Unionists are showing that they are not prepared to accept below the cost of living pay increase. The UCU and RMT are determined to campaign until they obtain a pay rise that is relevant to the sudden increases in inflation, mortgage repayments and the increase in the cost of living. The Government’s mini budget has increased financial pressure on working people, caused by the Government’s incompetence in running the economy. There are now other Unions balloting to take action due to Tory Government being out of control and lack of planning”.

Cllr Brian Smedley “Supporting workers taking strike action is  Labour Policy”

Unite Community member Glen Burrows said “This is an example of the solidarity that the Labour Party would do well to share. Are you listening Keir Starmer?

Cllr Richard Morgan (Fairfax East) who attended all this weeks picket lines, said “‘It was really encouraging to see the amount of public support as passers by waved and beeped their horns. And it was brilliant when the two unions combined forces showing that there is power when we come together'”

Leader of Bridgwater Town Council Cllr Brian Smedley (Westover) said “Labour looks set to win the next General Election and when we’re in Government we will be expected to put in place the policies of our party and of the trades unions that founded and continue to be part of our party. At conference recently this view was clear . The ASLEF motion, reaffirmed Labour’s commitment to “stand in solidarity with workers taking industrial action over the cost-of-living crisis” and states that a “good way” of showing solidarity with workers is to visit them on picket lines. Similarly a CWU motion that was passed called on conference to give its “unequivocal support” to all UK workers “taking strike action for higher pay and in defence of their jobs, terms and conditions”. I support that position and so does every Labour member I know.”
Other strikes across Bridgwater this week included the CWU action of the postal workers at Bridgwater sorting officer which was joined by Labour Party members.
Postal workers picket line at Bridgwater’s Friarn Street sorting office (pic Richard Morgan)

Meanwhile, at its Branch Meeting this week Bridgwater Labour Party unanimously passed the following motion


Cllr Richard Morgan (Fairfax East) “Power when we come together”

That the Labour Party was founded by trade unions to give a political voice to workers.

That research from Unite shows that profit margins for the UK’s biggest companies are 73% higher than pre-pandemic levels and runaway profits are responsible for 59% of inflation in the last year.

That in an inflationary period and with runaway corporate profits, below inflation wage rises represent a transfer of wealth from working people to the richest.


That supporting workers on picket lines sends a strong message about what workers can expect of a future Labour Government and statements describing such support as ‘gesture politics ‘ are ignoring the purpose of the Labour Party.

That current industrial action enjoys broad public support, with nearly 3⁄4 of people in favour of rail workers receiving a cost-of-living wage rise.

That no worker wants to go on strike: industrial action is only taken as a last resort, and the right to do so is essential for workers to protect their living standards.


Cllr Mick Lerry  “Tory Government is out of control”

The Labour Party to oppose real terms pay cuts for workers and to support wage rises in line with and in excess of the current inflation level.

The Labour Party to commit to increasing taxes on corporate profits to tackle inequality.

All Labour Party members including Labour MPs and frontbenchers to show solidarity with striking workers by attending picket lines and vocally supporting strikes.

The Labour Party to campaign against existing and new anti-trade unions laws, and when in government repeal them.

0 0 votes
Article Rating
1 Comment
Oldest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Ian James Macdonald
Ian James Macdonald
1 year ago

Yes, fully supportive of the actions of RMT and CWU and well done for holding fast. All we need now is for the spineless lader of the Party is throw his support behind them instead of taking the whip away from those terrible left wingers.

Find your ward using the SCC ward finder

Privacy Policy

To read our Privacy Policy and GDPR compliance statement click here.