Monday, September 25, 2006

Radical Nurses Group (estb 1980)

Radical Nurses

The Radical Nurses Group has been in existence since November 1980. It has set up by and for nurses in all fields because of the dissatisfaction so many of us have about so many aspects of our jobs.

We wanted a way of getting together, to support each other, to help us feel we're not alone, to moan together perhaps, to discuss our common problems but hope-fully also to act together to change things.

The Radical Nurses Group gives as another framework for ail this besides the unions and 'professional organisations'.

It is early days yet. So far we've had two national meetings in London and Sheffield and a third is planned for some- time in April in Manchester. We've also formed regional groupings from these national ones and are beginning to meet at these and even more local levels— town-wide and in individual hospitals.
We have no constitution and not even a set of aims and objectives yet. We're trying to remain as decentralised as possible with a group from each area being alternately responsible for organising the next national meeting and producing a newsletter every three months—of which one has been published so far. Some of the issues we feel are important are:

Staff shortages, sex roles and stereo-typing in nursing, nurses, trade unionism and militancy, nurses roles, especially in relation to doctors, lack of emotional support for nurses and many others—the problem is which to tackle first!
The next national meeting is going to debate the idea of professionalism in nursing and hopefully make some kind of coherent statement about what it actually IS, how it is used and whether it is a concept worth having at all. It's a word which is bandied around in hospitals and the nursing press without ever being defined and it's used to stifle criticism and generally oppress nurses.

For more information and details of contacts in your area please send 6 Stamped address envelopes and £1 to receive regular information and newsletter for the next year to 

Mary Twomey, 51 High Lane, Chorlton, Manchester M21

Radical Nurses
Radical Nurses living in London should contact group at 9 Ryaland Road, London NW5

Gay Lee (article Hospital Worker 1981 )
This small grouping (Radical Nurses Group - RNG) did have a significant impact in the area of politics in nursing, particularly in challenging "stero-typing" of nurses. One of the Groups key exponents went on to be Editor of the Nursing Times (Jane Slavage)
The larger and more established, Association of Radical Midwives (ARM) was a separate organisation which pre dated the Radical Nurses Group

COHSE Officers 1982


National President - Sid Ambler

Vice President - Colin Robinson

COHSE Head Office

Glen House, High Street, Banstead, Surrey

General Secretary - Albert Spanswick

Asst General Secretary - David Williams

National Officers

Hector Mackenzie

Colm O’Kane

Terry Mallinson

Rose Lambie

Finance Officer - Robert Farthing

Deputy Finance Officer - Bill Turner

Conference Office - Bill Loftus

Research Officer - Nick Grant

Legal Officer - Alex Heron

Education Officer - Malcolm MacMillan

Press Officer - Nita Clarke

Admin Asst - Joan Reed

Admin Asst - Vivienne Green

Admin Asst - Kitty Tobin


No. 1 (Northern)
44-46 Grosvenor Road, Jesmond, Newcastle-upon-Tyne 2
Regional Secretary: Andy Vanbeck
Regional Officers: Lisa Brady, Keith Blackburn

No. 2 (Yorkshire and Humberside)
98 Mansfield Road, Intake, Sheffield
Regional Secreatry :Martin Kineavy
Regional Officers: Glyn Robinson, Jean Moxon

No. 3 (North-Western)
381 Bury New Road, Prestwich. Manchester M25 5AW
Regional Secretary :Eric Cooper
Regional Officers: Bob Quick, Terry Foster, Andy Gill

No. 4 (West Midlands)
Dartmouth House, 67 Birmingham Road, West Bromwich, Staffs.
Regional Secretary: Bob Wilshaw
Regional Officers: Leslie Bumford, PaulVaughan

No. 5 (North-East Thames and East Anglia)
42-44 Sewardstone Road, Chingford, London E4 7JW
Regional Secretary: Keith Taylor
Regional Officers: John Wright, Pat Gormley

No. 6 (North-West Thames and Oxford)
112 Greyhound Lane, Streatham, London SW16.
Regional Secretary: Pat McGinley
Regional Officers: Ernie Brook, Niall Sheridan

No. 7 (South-Western)
Silverlea House. 4 Billetfield,
Taunton, Somerset.
Regional Secretary: Ty Taylor
Regional Officers: Trevor Wiggins,Trevor Parsons

No. 8 (South-East Thames)
24 Harmer Street, Gravesend, Kent
Regional Secretary: Bob Harmes
Regional Officers: John Jaggon, Fiona Sloman

No. 9 (Scotland)
28 Leonard Street, Perth.
75 Abbeygreen, Lesmahagow, Lanarkshire
Regional Secretary: Keith Hickson
Regional Officers Bert Dickson, Jimmy Mc Phee

No. 10 (Wales)
32 Gelliwastad Road, Pontypridd, Glamorgan.
Regional Secretary: Ted Davies
Regional Officers: Dick Edwards. Dave Galligan

No. 11 (Northern Ireland)
27 Ulsterville Avenue, Lisburn Road, Belfast
Regional Secretary : Bill Jackson
Regional Officers: Tommy Hughes. Hugh Miskelly

No. 12 (East Midlands)
98 Mansfield Road, Intake, Sheffield
Regional Secretary: Keith Swiffen
Regional Officers: Chris Binks.
Terry Kelly

No. 13 (South-West Thames and Wessex)
63 Victoria Road, Aldershot, Hampshire.

112 Greyhound Lane, Streatham, London SW16.
Regional Secretary: lan Dodd
Regional Officers: Judith Carter, Bob Abberley

Sunday, September 24, 2006

COHSE Strike Plan 1982

The COHSE NEC Action Plan

The Action Committee set up by COHSE's National Executive Committee met on 13 April 1982 and drew up a comprehensive range of recommendations for industrial action to be taken up by branches.

The two main forms to be applied within the COHSE guidelines on the protection of patient care and maintenance of emergency services are:

•ban on all non-emergency admissions;

• selective two hour withdrawals of Labour.

A further list was also set out, again within COHSE's Code of Conduct and within the 1979 Joint Agreement on Emergency Services. The proposals, as well as the emergency services agreement, are listed in Head Office Circular 235/82.

Designed to cause the greatest administrative inconvenience to management and least harm to patients, they include:

• ban on private patients' services;

• non co-operation with private contractors;

•refusal by nurses to carry out non-nursing duties, as well as by non-nurses to carry out nursing duties;

•ban on the cleaning of non-clinical areas;

•reduction of output of hospital laundries;

•holding of local demonstrations;

RCN "no opposition" to contacting out - 1989


June 1989


1. The role of competitive tendering in the NHS

The RCN stance on competitive tendering means that there is no opposition in principle to the concept of contracting out. The College accepts that there may be areas where efficiency savings and/or improvements to services can be made, and that the process of competitive tendering may assist with this. However, it is paramount that the standard of patient care must be at least maintained, and preferably improved. The generation of savings cannot be considered in isolation from other effects of competitive tendering.

The RCN policy aims to ensure that all aspects of services are considered, and that decisions on contracts are based on professional assessment of overall quality of service to patients, not on purely financial grounds.

Experience in the NHS to date has shown that the risk of contracting out is such that the RCN believes it can only be justified if substantial amounts of money are saved and used to the direct benefit of patient care.

This “blinkered” RCN position lead the local RCN officer during the Hillingdon hospital domestic dispute to state that it had nothing to do with nursing



By H.G. Knight R.M.P.A. NUPE London County Council Organiser

1. Hours of DUTY – 96 hour fortnight with complete elimination of the spread-over system

2. OVERTIME – To rank for special duty pay, and “time in lieu” to be discouraged.

3. ANNUAL LEAVE - Indoor Staff: A minimum of one month with full pay; additional leave to be granted in special cases. Outdoor Staff: A minimum of three weeks with full pay.

4. SICK PAY - A minimum of 13 weeks full and 13 weeks half-pay, with extension at the discretion of the Committee. Periods of sickness or accident due to service to be paid at full-salary scale during the whole period absent from duty.

5. PERMANENT DISABILITY - Adequate compensation should be paid in cases of permanent disability arising from cases of disease, illness or injury contracted or sustained during the normal course of duty.

6. RATES OF PAY - Complete revision of present rates of pay and incremental scales.

7. NURSES' HOMES - Nurses should have freedom of choice regarding place of residence, but when Nurses' Homes are established, full amenities for privacy to be provided. Indoor and outdoor facilities for study and recreation.

8. HIGHER GRADE PAYMENTS - Payment for all higher grade duties to commence from the time the duties are undertaken.

9. AFTER-DUTY PASSES - Resident Staff to be brought into conformity with this regulation in the L.C.C. Public Health Department.

10. RESTRICTIONS. - The abolition of all unnecessary restrictions.

If you agree with this Charter and are not already a member of an active trade union, join N.U.P.E. to-day and let us get on with the job.

NUPE Journal June 1938

Hospital Workers Charter

(Circa 1977)


No cuts in staff at any level

No cover of unfilled vacancies

No jobs lost : for all trained Hospital Workers

For the improvement of our buildings, facilities and equipment.

NHS staff to replace all voluntary workers , agency workers and outside contractors.

All hospital workers fighting the cuts should campaign in the local TU movement for active support.


Against all loss of earnings through cuts in overtime and bonus levels; For a decent living wage for all Hospital Workers.

Against all forms of pay restraint.

For a 35 hour week; without loss of pay, To force more jobs.


For 100% Trade Union organisation

Monthly branch meetings in working time

Shop Stewards regularly elected for every department at departmental meetings

No participation in Joint Consultative Committees: for the building of strong Joint Shop Stewards Committees at Hospital, district and area level.


Annual national conferences to be the supreme policy making body

Full-time union officials to be elected annually by the members, on the same pay as the members, and recallable by their members at any time.


Against all racial discrimination

For the automatic renewal of work permits

For the abolition of private practice inside and outside the NHS


Hospital Worker was primarily a publication of the Socialist Workers Party established in 1973 at conference in Birmingham. In 1975 it dissolved national editions into regionaal broadsheets, but a new national bulliten was re-established in October 1976 which survived until about 1982

By the early 1980’s, the SWP’s increasing sectarianism and famous “down turn period” forced it’s closure.

MH&IWU Nurses Charter (1945)

Mental Hospital & Instutional Workers Union

Mental Nurses Charter (1945)


Owing to the acute shortage of nurses and the dearth of recruits to the Nursing Service, the General Secretary of the Mental Hospital and Institutional Workers' Union, as a member of the T.U.C. General Council, presented to the Trades Union Congress (1937) the Nurses' Charter, which focused public attention on the necessity of improving salaries and conditions of service in the Nursing Profession.

The Government set' up an Inter-Departmental Committee under the Chairmanship of Lord Alness,

"To inquire into the arrangements at present in operation in Scotland with regard to the recruitment and terms and conditions of service of persons engaged in nursing the sick, and to report whether-any changes in these arrangements, or other measures, are expedient for the purpose of maintaining an adequate service, both for institutional and for domiciliary nursing."

This Committee issued a report to the Department of Health for Scotland on September 29th, 1938, Many hospital authorities failed to give effect to the recommendations of this Committee and the shortage of nurses became more acute.

In October, 1941, the Right Hon. Thomas Johnston, M.P., Secretary of State for Scotland, decided to set up a Nurses' Salaries Committee in Scotland under the Chairmanship of Professor T. M. Taylor :

"To draw up agreed scales of salaries and emoluments for State-registered nurses employed in Scotland in hospitals, including Mental Hospitals."

In November, 1942, it was decided to set up a Sub-Committee in association with the Nurses' Salaries Committee to make a rapid review of the scales of salaries and conditions of service in Mental Hospitals and Institutions in Scotland. This Sub-Committee was comprised of panels of ten members, each drawn from the Employers' Organisation and the Mental Hospital & Institutional Workers Union (MH&IWU). The first meeting of the Sub-Committee was held on January 22nd, 1943 ; the final meeting on September 2nd, 1943.

The salaries and conditions of service agreed by this Sub-Committee were accepted as the terms of employment under the Mental Nurses (Employment and Offences) Order (Scotland), 1943, on the understanding that another Sub-Committee of the Scottish Nurses' Salaries Committee would be set up to deal with many aspects of terms and conditions of service which had not been previously dealt with.

The Secretary of State for Scotland decided that a new Sub-Committee
should be set up

"To draw up agreed scales of salaries and conditions of service of nurses in Mental Hospitals and Mental Deficiency Institutions in the light of the recommendations made by the Taylor Committee."

The Sub-Committee consisted of 12 members on each of two panels representing employers and employees, and their first meeting was held on January 14th, 1944, and the last meeting was held on June 14th, 1945.

Throughout the proceedings of the Sub-Committee the following Union representatives attended meetings :—

Mr; GEO. GIBSON (Gen. Sec.) Mr. J. BUTLER (N.E.C.)
Mr. H. SHAW (Assist. Gen. Sec.) Mr. T. PRENTICE (Scot. Fed. Sec.)
Mr. J. T. WAITE (Nat.
Organiser) Mr. J. RUSSELL (Cupar Branch)
Mr. M. MCBRIDE (Scot. Organiser} Miss A. M. HOWIE (Woodilee B.)

This publication is not a full report of the Sub-Committee's decisions, although the main features of the recommendations are given in detail for the guidance of all Mental Nurses in Scotland.

Saturday, September 23, 2006

Pete Marshall

Pete Marshall started his nursing career at St Margaret’s hospital in Birmingham which cared for mentally handicapped patients/clients.

He was a keen advocate of progressive policies with regard to the mentally handicapped. He soon became involved in the local COHSE branch becoming its Assistant Branch Secretary and publicity officer.

Pete, along with his close friend Andy Stackhouse organised a very high profile campaign regarding staffing levels at the hospital, which culminated in a huge vote of no confidence in the hospitals senior management.

Pete Marshall was appointed COHSE regional officer for North Thames & Oxford region of COHSE in May 1984, securing a high level of popularity amongst the COHSE activists on his patch.

He soon secured a high profile in the London media, around campaign such as Brent anti cuts campaign. Neasden hospital occupation and the 1988 nurses dispute (the later securing not only a significant pay rise for nurses but also a massive increase in London Weighting). Pete helped establish the London Co-ordinating commitee of COHSE and served for many years as London Health Emergency treasurer.

In the mid 1980's, Pete along with Bob Abberley were key in pushing through a mayor review of COHSE’s policies with regard to the Mentally Handicapped services (Learning difficulties). This led the union into having a progressive view with regard to the closure of the old large Victorian institutions. Without this progressive view COHSE would not only have lost new professionals entering this field, but more importantly could have seriously undermined any move to the community facilities.

Pete was a committed anti racists and fascist and was involved the infamous “Battle of Waterloo” against the BNP at Waterloo station.

Pete was elected to the Executive of the Greater London Labour Party and was a close associate of Jim Fitzpatrick (later MP for Bow & Poplar).

In June 1990 Pete was appointed Regional Secretary for the new COHSE London region, but on appointment stated in typical style that his best job was “renting deck chairs out on Bourenmouth beach”.

After the creation of UNISON in 1993, Pete struggled with the new channels of accountability, famously denouncing the wrong right winger in Labour Briefing earning him a famous but hilarious rebuke from Rodney Bickerstaffe General Secretary.

Pete turned down the opportunity to head up health in the capital and moved into UNISON’s energy sector finally moving back to the West Midlands, close to beloved football club, Birmingham City.

Friday, September 22, 2006

COHSE No Cuts in 1987

COHSE Campaigning in 1987 against the cuts

COHSE Conference 1986 Report

COHSE members are looking to turn 1987 into “No cuts year” with a large –scale centrally directed campaign to defend the Health & Social Services.

That was the message from Chris Hart of Maudsley Branch moving Resolution 55. He said: 'We are asking for a campaign run along similar lines to the political fund.

campaign. 'We want to use the media of all forms. We want videos, leaflets, meetings for members of the public and for health workers.'.

And he urged delegates: 'Take this resolution back to your members, take it to
every region and carry on the campaign.'

He was backed by Jean Winship of Bethlem Royal, who said: 'The public doesn’t'
know the true facts.' And she outlined the savage cuts in staffing, pay and conditions in the hospitals.

The resolution was accepted for the NEC by General Secretary David Williams, who urged: 'Don't vote for the resolution and then forget it. Vote for it and then do something about it.” And he went on: 'Here is a wonderful resolution that can unite us in action in campaign.'

COHSE had given full support to miners in their fight, and it had played an
active role in other workers battles, we have supported every working class struggle there is,' he said. Now COHSE had the opportunity to fight united against the cuts.

The resolution was CARRIED.

Conference also backed a call by Cllr Michael Walker of Hillingdon and District Branch, moving Resolution 56, to support London Health Emergency. LHE, he said, was a model of how to run a campaign. And he told delegates: 'COHSE has played an important role and we are proud of the work we have done.'

Bill Nimmo of Dumfries and Galloway played tribute to LHE, whose fame, he said, had spread far beyond London. 'This group of people have been prepared to highlight what Thatcherism is doing to the Health Service,' he said.

David Williams, for the NEC, promised that COHSE would continue to give its
support to LHE. The resolution was CARRIED.

While the COHSE no cuts campaign meet with mixed success, it undoubtedly increased the national profile of COHSE and possibly contributed to the confidence amongst the more advanced elements of the membership. Leading to the successful strike action by COHSE nurses in 1988. A dispute which rocked the Thatcher government and secured major pay rises for nurses.

Chris Hart became a COHSE Regional Officer but returned to his beloved nursing

National Asylum Workers Union Branches 1911

National Asylum Workers Union Branches 1911 (December 1911)


Abergavenny (Wales) 72 members 64% of staff

Aylesbury 59 members 59% of staff

Banstead 82 members 26% of staff

Beverley 20 members

Bexley 180 members 50% of staff (94% of male staff)

Birmingham 114 members

Bodmin 94 members 52% of staff

Cane Hill 149 members 53% of staff

Cardiff (Wales)101 members 80% of staff (91% of male Staff)

Carmarthen (Wales)34 members 34% of staff

Caterham 121 members 35% of staff

Chester 102 members 81% of staff (90% of male staff)

Claybury 145 members 35% of staff

Colney Hatch 104 members 27% of staff

Cotford 63 members 63% of staff

Darenth 186 members 70% of staff

Devizes 110 members 71% of staff

Durham 44 members 25% of staff

Epsom 279 members 45% of staff

Exminister 138 members 76% of staff

Gloucster 75 members

Hanwell 56 members 19% of staff

Haywards Heath 89 members 68% of staff

Hellingly 117 members 59% of staff (83% of male staff)

Hereford 59 members 62% of staff (96% of male staff)

Hull 60 members 62% of staff (97% of male staff)

Lancaster 245 78% of staff

Leavesden 181 members 52% of staff (78% of male staff)

Littlemore 68 members 50% of staff

Macclesfield 150 members

Maidstone 100 members 50% of staff (93% of male staff)

Menston & Scaleboro 225 members 78% of staff (85% of male staff)

Middlesex 75 members 36% of staff

Morpeth 38 members 31% of staff

Netherne 62 members 33% of staff (70% of male staff)

Newport (Wales) 53 members 83% of staff (100% of male staff)

Norwich 28 members 20% of staff

Prestwich 310 members 86% of staff (92% of male staff)

Rainhill 228 members 75% of staff (86% of male staff)

Storthes Hall 149 members 84% of staff

Wakefield 219 members 71% of staff (88% of male staff)

Warlingham 84 members 62% of staff (89% of male staff0

Winwick 245 members 58% of staff (80% of male staff)

York 150 members 60% of staff


Limerick, Ireland membership unknown but affiliated

Fulbourne 31 members 36% of staff
Narboro 18 members
Powick 12 members
Tooting Bec 44 members (63% of male staff

COHSE Officer 1947

COHSE Officer 1947

Claude Bartlett – COHSE President ; North Filham, Ivybridge, Devon

R. Baker – COHSE Vice President Hillcroft, Newtown, Bishop Middleham, Ferryhill, Durham.


George Gibson – COHSE General Secretary; 1 Rushford Avenue, Levenshume, Manchester.

Fred Comer – COHSE Asst General Secretary; Swinton House, 324 Grays Inn Road, London.

Robert Farthing – COHSE Cashier

Jack. T. Waite – COHSE National Organiser (based Manchester)



Cllr George.C. Esther – Northern Region 1 9 Appian Place, Sheriff Hill, Newcastle.

Cllr Jack Jepson – North Eastern Region 2 658 Barnsley Rd, Firth Park, Sheffield.

Ted. A Hardy – North East Region 3 1 Rusholme Avenue, Levenshulme, Manchester.

W.L.Griffiths - North Midland Region 4, Midland Region 6 and Wales Region 7 60 Brookvale Road, Olton, Birmingham.

Joe Richards - Eastern Region 5 155 Old church Road, Romford, Essex

Charles Harris - South West Region 8, Southern Region 9, South Seat Region 10 37 Myrtle Road, Dartford, Kent

Cliff Comer - London Region 11 Swinton House, 324 Grays Inn Rd, London,,WC1

Michael McBride - Scotland Region 12 21 Holyrood Crescent, Glasgow,Scotland

Doris Westmacott - COHSE Guild of Nurses 38 Argyle Square, London WC1

Fred Rason -Voluntary Hospitals Swinton House, 324 Grays Inn Rd, London,WC1

also Officers: Frank Lynch, E.J.Over; and Dick Akers (appointed late 1947) Secretary - Miss L.M. Abrahams (London)

Members of Parliament

Alderman Ted A. Hardy Dr Hyacinth Morgan Dr S (Santo?) Jeger Fred Messer George Thomas

TUC – George Gibson

General Nursing Council Miss K. M. Willis, Caterham,mental hospital Surrey Mr J.H.Buckley, 48 Hitchin Road, Arlesey, Bedfordshire

COHSE National Executive Committee 1947

R. Barker; J. Butler; C.E. Ceeley; M.Dubury; A. Flanagam; J. Garside; J. Gue; A. Harrison; J. Hickie; G. Lee; E. Machin; Dr H.B.W. Morgan; E.J. Smart; A.F. Soutwell; H.S. Waites; T.G. Westcott

(J.Gue - Joe Gue Claybury)

Rose Lambie

Rose Lambie

Rose Lambie was born into a Scottish mining community in around 1926, the daughter of a miner, a pedigree she was very proud to recall.

Rose commenced work at Hartwood Mental Hospital at Shotts, Scotland in 1941 as a domestic, followed by eighteen years as manageress for the hospitals shops, which supplied goods to the long stay mental patients on the wards.

Rose gained her trade union education through the National Council of Labour Colleges and sat as an employee representative on the National Insurance Local Appeals Tribunal panel in Motherwell from 1952-1962.

In 1962 Rose moved to work for three years as a senior clerk in the Dietetic office at Redhill General Hospital in Surrey, England.

Rose Lambie was appointed to the post of COHSE women’s officer In 1965, on the retirement of Doris Westmacott .

She strongly felt that the post of Women’s officer was seen as “inferior” to that of a national officer and therefore fought to be re-graded as a national officer (and opposed women’s officer posts in the union).

As a national officer she took responsibility at various times for Professional & Technical and COHSE’s small but vocal Local Government members (notably in Sheffield, Salford and Gateshead) as well as other Whitley councils.

Rose was involved in COHSE first working party to examine women’s role in the union, which was established in the mid 1970’s but this was wound up in 1976 after two years, primarily because of hostility to its reports at COHSE national delegate conference “It didn’t go down well at conference” she recalled.

Another attempt was made in 1979 to reestablish an equal opportunities committee and with the support of Liz Hooper NEC member and Chair of the Committee (also Braintree Labour Councillor) much progress was made and many of the committee’s recommendations on encouraging women’s participation were adopted by the union. (COHSE was one of the few unions to have reserved NEC seats for women from the 1980’s onwards)

Rose stood unsuccessfully for the post of COHSE General Secretary in 1982 on the death of Albert Spanswick.

She was also the TUC representative on the governing Council of Hillcourt College in Surrey, the only residential college in the country for women without formal education

After retirement Rose moved back to Scotland (?) and died only a few weeks after Colm O’Kane in 2005.

Kathleen Daly First COHSE Women Regional Secretary

Kathleen Mary Daly First Women to become a COHSE Regional Secretary

Miss Kathleen Daly, Joined the National Union of County Officers in 1932, in 1935 started work as a probationary nurse, the later in many health occupations including, clerk, laundry worker, porter, telephonist and finally ward orderly (unqualified nurse) and was elected COHSE branch secretary at St Giles Hospital, Camberwell, South London.

While working at St Giles Hospital, Kathleen Daly lived at 4 Ashbourne Grove, East Dulwich, London

Appointed as a COHSE organiser in 1950 with responsiblity for recruitment. As part of this brief she was involved in a major campaign to recruit staff into COHSE in the Isle of Man.

Represented COHSE on various Whitley Council negotiating bodies.

In 1959 Miss Kathleen Daly was appointed as the first women COHSE Regional Secretary (the only other COHSE Regional Secretary being Gill Hale in the COHSE Northern Region).

She was well respected by COHSE ambulance members in London in their campaign for a “nationalised” NHS ambulance service.

Kathleen Daly stood for the post of COHSE General Secretary in 1967, However, a year later it was reported to COHSE West Metropolitan Region that Miss Daly was ill and unlikely to return to work.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Colm O'Kane

Colm Sean O’Kane was born in County Derry, N.Ireland in 1935 ?, and was educated (alongside John Hume of the SDLP) at St Columb's College. 

He became a registered mental nurse at Purdysburn hospital, Belfast, and in the 1950’s moved to England to undertake his training in mental handicap nursing at St Ebba's Hospital, Epsom, then Darenth Park hospital, then he secured the post of Deputy Charge Nurse at Cotshill Hospital, Oxfordshire and then in 1960 to Aston Hall Hospital, Derby, rising to the post of Charge Nurse and becoming COHSE Branch Secretary.

In 1964 he was appointed COHSE Regional Secretary for No5: Region of COHSE, then national officer in 1974, where he played a key role in comiling COHSE's response to the Jay Committee into Care and Nursing of the Mentally handicapped.

Finally, becoming Deputy General Secretary of COHSE then UNISON in 1993 before before retiring in 1994, having palayed a key role in steering COHSE into the new union, UNISON.

Hector MacKenzie COHSE General Secretary recalled one of Colm’s interventions during the merger with Nalgo and NUPE accordingly,
Colm, digging in against Nalgo and Nupe, was asked by Dave Prentis (now Unison general secretary) to give the intellectual argument behind Cohse's position.

"You want the intellectual argument?" retorted Colm. "I will give you the intellectual argument. It is this: we are not bloody well having it. Full stop! Is that intellectual enough for you?".

Colm became UNISON Deputy General Secretary in 1993

He was active in the Labour Party, having joined the Party in 1957, elected to the Labour Party NEC in 1987, and was a strong supporter of Neil Kinnock, Labour Party leader.

Diagnosed with motor neurone disease around 1990, he bore his illness with customary fortitude and a complete lack of bitterness. His close friend and COHSE General secretary Lord Hector MacKenzie paid tribute to Colm during a debate on Palliative care.

He died at St Raphael’s Hospice, Wallington on 14th June 2005 just short of his 70th birthday. Leaving a devoted wife Lila, three children and two grandchildren.

Rev Stanley Morgan 1870-1951

Rev Stanley Morgan 1870-1851

Rev Stanley J.W. Morgan was born March 1870 at London Poplar, Swanscombe, Kent.
Described later by COHSE General Secretary Cliff Comer as “small in stature, but big in human kindness ".
His early years seem to have been spent as the Greenhithe Congregational minister in Kent, a position he held for 55 years.

He was appointed as London & Southern Regional Organiser of the newly established “Federation” between the National Asylum Worker Union and the Poor Law Workers Trade Union in 1921 on a salary of £300 a year. Working out of the Poor Law Workers (later Hospital & Welfare Services Union) London office.

When the Federation was dissolved in November 1922 his services were maintained by the National Asylum Workers Union (later Mental Hospital & Institutional Workers Union).

In March 1922 Rev Stanley Morgan stood as the Labour candidate (with official union support) in the Parliamentary by-election at Faversham, Kent, being narrowly beaten by the Conservative candidate (2,579 votes).

He was elected to Kent County Council for the Dartford area, while living at 26 Cobham Terrace, Greenhithe, Kent as a Labour Party candiate.
On the eve of his retirement on 31st December 1937, a dinner held in his honour at Shaftesbury hotel on August 11th 1937, attended by Miss Wiese, Mr Blood, Mr Blackburn and Mr Southwell of the National Executive Committee.

The General Secretary George Gibson wrote of the Rev Morgan that “he had known him over a period of seventeen years during which time there has been no occasion for the slightest difference of opinion".
Mr E.R Blackburn (former President) referred to the Rev Morgan’s “grim but triumphant struggles with both the London County Council and the late Metropolitan Asylums Board. While Miss Weise praised his organizational skills amongst mental nurses.

The guests then presented Rev Stanley Morgan with a cheque for £116 by Mr F.J. Halinson Chairman of the London District of the MH&IWU union.
On retirement Rev Morgan remained a Labour, Kent County Councillor.

Stanley Morgan died on the evening of Sunday 16th December 1951 at the age of 81.

The COHSE General Secretary Cliff Comer also a staunch non-conformist stated on his death

“He was one of the most outstanding and striking personalities have ever met. Not everyone was able to take kindly to him because they did not take the trouble to get to know him. To know Stanley Morgan was to respect and love him as a brother”.

And Mr Cliff Comer also recalled advice Morgan gave him on being appointed a full time officer in1933 “When you come up against prejudice, as you undoubtedly will, do not stop to argue with it; leave it to rot at the roadside where it belongs, and go on your way”.

Comer also recalled Rev Stanley Morgan stating “Comer the world is mad, It will neither have Jesus Christ, nor a sensible economic system to live under”.


Rev Stanley  J W Morgan, 26 Cobham Terrace, Greenhithe, Kent (address 1936)

During the heavy air raids on the South Coast during WW2, Rev Stanley Morgan played a key role in organising Sunday church services inside the chalk cliff tunnel's used as air raid shelters .

Syd Chester: "The accordionist in the Greenhithe Tunnel " I learned that every Sunday, during the height of the Blitz, services were held in one of the chalk tunnels  at Greenhithe. The vicar was the Rev Stanley Morgan and the congregation was huge. For these people prayers were important. It was typical of that spirit of defiance shown at the time."

Reverend Stanley became Chairman of the West Hill hospital (previously known as King Edward Hospital) in 1910 and remained as Chairman for the next 25 years. He was much respected and worked tirelessly to improve the lives of the poor in Dartford.

In Kent a day center at Barn End, Wilmington, Dartford seems to have been named after him. Stanley Morgan House

And a road in Dartford was named after him

Surely, Rev Stanley Morgan deserves a fitting tribute from the people of Dartford, a people he so tirelessly served.