Saturday, April 22, 2006

Roy Oliver - COHSE Gay Rights

Roy Oliver was a nurse and branch secretary at Hungerford Hospital (established 7th August 1968) and later Reading & District COHSE branch.

Lead a successful campaign to save the 100 beded care of the elderly Hungerford Hospital in 1978/79

A key supporter of the Berkshire Joint Trade Union Committee which Roy chaired

A Liberal Councillor in Hungerford (later he defected to Labour).

He was a National Executive Committee Member for Region 6 and would wear his pink triangle "Gay Rights" badge with pride.

Roy was a popular NEC member and his popularity helped COHSE in securing an early trade union commitment to Lesbian & Gay rights. However he had earlier been slow handclapped for supporting equality at COHSE Conference.

COHSE's eaarly committment to Lesbian & gay rights culminated in the union refusing to hold its conference on the Isle of Man and its opposition to Clause 28.

Roy was involved in the Battle Hospital Miners Support Group

Like so many of his friends he died young.


The origins of the Reading & District COHSE Branch go back to the establsihment of the COHSE Peppard United Branch formed by branches in the Reading and Henley area in 1952 with Tom Kelly as Branch secretary