ISJ 2 Index | Main Newspaper Index

Encyclopedia of Trotskyism | Marxists’ Internet Archive

International Socialism, December 1997


Dave Renton

Past Its Peak


From International Socialism 2:77, December 1997.
Copyright © International Socialism.
Copied with thanks from the International Socialism Archive.
Marked up by Einde O’Callaghan for ETOL.


N. Branson
History of the Communist Party of Great Britain 1941–1951
Lawrence and Wishart 1997, £14.99

The Communist Party of Great Britain represented the fate of the Russian Revolution in Britain. At its birth in 1920, the party brought together the generation of militants who had fought against the First World War. One important figure was J.T. Murphy, a leader of the shop stewards movement in Sheffield. Arthur Horner, another prominent member of the Communist Party, was a former member of the South Wales Miners Unofficial Reform Movement, and had been a volunteer in James Connolly’s Irish Citizens Army. From 1929, the chairman of the party was Harry Pollitt, an activist in the Boilermakers Union and a key figure in the 1919 strike which stopped the Jolly George, a ship bound for Poland with weapons to use against the Red Army in Russia. Even Rajani Palme Dutt, the loudest pro-Stalin voice within the CPGB, had spent a year in jail as a conscientious objector during the war. [1]

This generation of militants joined the Communist Party not only because they hated the war, but also because they saw the example of the revolution in Russia, which they wanted British workers to follow. From the mid-1920s, however, the nature of Russian society began to change from within. The conditions of the working class were attacked, while political rule was usurped by a bureaucratic layer which directed the state machine for its own ends. By 1929 the bureaucracy ruled unchallenged over a form of state capitalism little different from capitalism in the West. The decomposition of the Russian Revolution led to the Stalinisation of the international Communist movement. The Communist parties increasingly behaved as the tools of Soviet foreign policy, and not as independent revolutionary organisations of the working class.

The Stalinisation of the Communist parties meant that they were forced to adopt periodic changes of line. In 1929, for example, the Communist International adopted the tactic of ‘class against class’. Stalin promised an immediate international revolution. The CPs were expected to turn their fire on the reformist parties, the ‘social fascists’ who held the revolution back. As a consequence, the German Communist Party (KPD) refused to work with the German Socialist Party (SPD) in the fight against fascism. This ultra-left line did nothing to stop Hitler from seizing power in 1933. Following this enormous defeat, however, Stalin chose a new tactic of alliance with the ruling classes of the Western European nations. Thus from 1934 the sectarian line of class against class was replaced with the tactic of the ‘Popular Front’. The Communist parties were now expected to unite not only with social democratic parties, but even ‘pro-Soviet’ ruling class parties, no matter how right wing.

Despite their alternately left sectarian and then right wing politics, the Communist parties remained working class parties. The leaders were still chosen from the same layer of militants. The bulk of the members were organised workers. In the 1930s the Communist Party of Great Britain (CPGB) provided the leaderships of the London bus workers’ strikes and the Pressed Steel strike. [2] Communist Party members were central to the fight against fascism, and took a leading role in the Battle of Cable Street. [3] The CP’s newspaper, the Daily Worker, was the only significant voice on the left that supported strikes. As Ian Birchall has written, the Communist Party was ‘the only organisation that [bore] Marxist ideas – in however distorted a form – into significant sections of the British working class, and the only organisation that [was] able to offer some kind of national framework to industrial militants’. [4]

At its height, there was something impressive about the Communist Party of Great Britain. In the years 1942–1951, the CP had between 35,000 and 56,000 members. These members were overwhelmingly drawn from manual industry. Of the 754 delegates to the 1944 party congress, over half were members of the five main manual unions: 193 were members of the AEU engineers’ union, 81 were members of the TGWU transport workers’ union, 52 were members of the miners’ NUM, 33 were members of the electricians’ ETU, 32 were members of the rail workers’ union, the NUR. At the Labour Party conference in May 1945 the Communist Party’s motion calling for ‘Progressive Unity’ was supported by the delegations of the AEU, the NUM, the ETU, the firefighters’ FBU union, the painters’ union, the vehicle builders’ union, and the train drivers’ union ASLEF. [5] In 1945 the party had two MPs, Willie Gallacher and Phil Piratin; and one member, the bus worker Bert Papworth, on the General Council of the TUC. The best sign of the CP’s strength was its newspaper. During the years 1945-1951, the Daily Worker had a circulation of over 100,000.

Socialists organising in Britain today are faced with the opportunity to build a revolutionary party while there is a reformist government in office. Since revolutionaries have not had this chance for 18 years, it is certainly helpful to look to the past, and to see how other left wing forces have operated before us. It is only right, therefore, to welcome Noreen Branson’s new History Of The Communist Party Of Great Britain, the fourth volume in Lawrence and Wishart’s series, covering the years 1941–1951. This is an extremely well documented account of a key decade in the history of the CP. It is lively, packed with interviews, and it gives good accounts of areas of party activity which earlier generations of CP historians have ignored. Even as we welcome this book, though, we must be cautious. This series is very much the ‘official’ history of the Communist Party. It was commissioned in the summer of 1956, as Soviet tanks moved into Hungary. The books were intended as a celebration of the party’s past, to take the minds of CP members away from the crisis inside their organisation. Noreen Branson was herself a long standing member of the CPGB, until its dissolution in 1990. Not surprisingly, her account is generous to the CP, justifying its actions, passing over its mistakes, and covering over the tensions at the heart of the party.

Through the war

Communist policy under the 1945–1951 Labour government was based on the success of its policy during the Second World War. To understand the politics of the party after 1945, it is necessary to review the party’s line in 1939–1945. The Communist Party went into the Second World War in September 1939 still under the banner of the Popular Front. Its leadership presented the war as an anti-fascist war against Hitler. In October, however, Dave Springhall, the party’s national organiser, returned from Moscow and explained that the anti-fascist war could not be squared with the Hitler-Stalin pact. This was not an anti-fascist war, but an imperialist war, which had to be opposed. The CP then somersaulted, to follow the Moscow line. What followed was a brief period of sham revolutionary defeatism, in which the national leadership of the CP called for revolution to bring about a ‘people’s peace’; while local members of the CP worked in pragmatic alliances, applying a very watered down version of the party’s perspective. [6]

After June 1941, and when the Soviet Union was attacked by Germany, the Communist Party line changed once more. Now the war was portrayed again as an anti-fascist conflict. One result of the Russian entry into the war was that the Communist Party suddenly became respectable: Stalin’s Short Course was introduced onto school reading lists, Churchill’s wife set up an ‘Aid Russia’ fund, local Anglo-Soviet Committees were set up, often under the auspices of businessmen and Chambers of Commerce. Noreen Branson quotes one couple involved in the campaign:

We. .. suddenly find ourselves addressing large and influential audiences on the achievements of the Soviet Union. His Worship the Mayor is in the chair, the leaders of local society are on the platform, where the grand piano, presently to accompany both God Save the King and the International is prophetically draped with the Union Jack and the Red Flag, sociably intertwined. [7]

The feel of the cross-class alliances which characterised this new period is well captured by the photograph on the front cover of Branson’s book: a middle aged member of the Home Guard stares like a patriot into the distance, while behind him there are six foot tall pictures of Roosevelt, Nehru, Churchill, Stalin and Chiang Kai-Shek.

In return for its new respectability, the party offered the support of its members in the factories for the war. CP propaganda stressed the urgent need to increase production. The Communist Party called for Joint Production Committees (JPCs), joint management and union committees to increase the pace and level of work. Leading members of the party attacked the waste and inefficiency of ordinary workers:

If the 600,000 members of the AEU alone were to put on a spurt, equivalent to an extra five minutes of work per hour, on a 60-hour week, it would yield extra work to the equivalent of 47 fully equipped fighter planes or 3 million ‘common’ shells. [8]

At the time many on the left criticised the JPCs for surrendering to the interests of management. Branson acknowledges this attack, but defends the campaign:

Joint Production Committees did not lead to any weakening of trade union organisation; on the contrary, shop floor organisation was to emerge by the end of the war, far more powerfully entrenched than ever before. [9]

The campaign for increased production had a dual role. On the one hand, it did imply at least some sort of workers’ supervision of industry. As such, it was resented by some employers, notably the members of the Engineering Employers’ Federation. On the other hand, the fact that the Communist Party and the majority of its stewards were involved in increasing production and opposing strikes did disorientate many militants and did weaken rank and file organisation across industry. The CP intervened in a series of strikes, such as the 1942 Total Time strike, the 1943 strike at Swan Hunters and the 1944 apprentices’ strike, to argue for a return to work. [10] In November 1943, for example, the government ordered the release of the fascist Oswald Mosley from wartime detention. Over 1 million people signed the petition of protest. In a series of factories, stewards threatened to strike, only to be held back by the Communist Party. Branson, again, states the case for the CP:

Communists were heavily engaged in trying to channel the anger into actions which would not damage the war effort. They headed off protest strikes in the war factories and the coal mines by advocating, instead, the appointment of delegations to meet with MPs and government representatives, and by launching petitions to be despatched to Downing Street. [11]

Coming out of the war, the Communist Party seemed to be at the peak of its power. As a result of its politics of left patriotism, it had gained a level of respectability. In the difficult conditions of war, with its members ever likely to be called up, the party held together a large membership.


December 1941



December 1942


July 1943


March 1944


March 1945


Most CP members were still young: the average age of delegates to the 1944 conference was 32. [12] At the same time, the Communist Party’s tactic of applying for membership to the Labour Party seemed to be on the verge of taking off. In June 1943 a motion at the Labour Party conference calling for ‘Progressive Unity’ with the CP was defeated by 712,000 votes to 1,951,000. In May 1945, a similar motion lost by just 1,219,000 to 1,314,000. [13] As the logical consequence of this shift, the party adopted a new programme in 1944, Britain For The People. The programme argued that with a new parliament, elected by proportional representation, Britain could move to socialism without having to go through revolution.

Beneath the surface, however, there were problems, especially among the party’s industrial cadre. The drive for production saw the party calling for uninterrupted work at the highest intensity. Meanwhile, the CP had gained a layer of officials within the machinery of several of the larger unions. Arthur Horner was president of the South Wales miners, Abe Moffat was president of the Scottish miners, Joe Scott and Gilbert Hitchings were on the AEU executive, Wal Hannington and George Crane were national organisers for the AEU, Tim Burns was on the executive of ASLEF, Jim Gardner was general secretary of the Foundry Workers’ Union, and John Horner was general secretary of the FBU. [14] It was simply not worth jeopardising the position of these officials, out of any principled commitment to the interests of ordinary workers. The perspective of building an independent rank and file movement was quietly shelved. Not surprisingly, the CP began to loosen its hold on its periphery of left wing stewards in the factories. In 1944, for example, the executive committee complained of the ‘very low level of factory group life’. In response, the party dissolved its factory groups, and instructed its members to join residential branches in their home area. [15]

Revolutionaries and Labour

The task for revolutionaries faced with a Labour government is to navigate between the two extremes of sectarianism and capitulation. The 1945–1951 Labour government did achieve real reforms. The National Health Service was set up. The railways, mines, gas and electricity were all nationalised. The government built 200,000 houses a year. Unemployment never rose above 250,000. Given Labour’s successes, it was imperative for the Communist Party to operate as a fraternal critic. If the CP had simply attacked Labour for not introducing workers’ power, then most workers would have seen the party as a sect. The party’s influence would have withered. However, if it had withdrawn all criticism and welcomed everything Labour did, without calling for any more left wing measures, then the party would have been side lined. If the CP had simply acted as a cheerleader for Labour, then it would have been incapable of offering any sort of alternative politics. The need to argue a consistent line grew in importance as Labour’s period of reforms petered out after the winter of 1947–1948. Certainly for the last three years of Labour government, there was a space to the left of Labour – provided that the CP could exploit it.

In practice, however, the Communist Party veered from one extreme to the other. The party had a disastrous start in the 1945 election because it overestimated its own support, and underestimated the level of working class support for the Labour Party. Rather than calling for a clear class vote for Labour, the CP suggested an alliance between the CP, Labour, and the Conservatives, leading to a ‘Labour and progressive majority’. The Daily Worker demanded ‘all party national government’. A London District Committee pamphlet, published in April 1945, suggested that the Labour Party ‘should then form a new National Government and invite others, including Churchill and Eden, to participate’. The April Labour Monthly praised Churchill’s ‘sincerity and genuineness’, and repeated the suggestion. [16] Noreen Branson dances lightly over the events of the election, but the Communist Party’s decision was a mistake and an embarrassment. It made things easier for anti-Communists in the Labour Party, and meant that the CP took little gain from the huge swing to the left. Labour won a huge majority of 146, but just two Communists were elected.

Having been wrong once, the Communist Party determined not to repeat its mistake. From the 1945 election until late 1947 the CP acted as the most loyal support to Labour. The new line was that Labour was immune from criticism. Five days after the election troops were sent into the Surrey Docks. The Daily Worker refused to condemn the troops, and gave a neutral account under the headline, Troops take over London Docks. [17] In 1946 there was a renewed attempt to affiliate the Communist Party to Labour. Harry Pollitt wrote an obsequious letter to the secretary of the Labour Party, Morgan Phillips, stressing the common position of the CP and Labour. Affiliation, he argued:

would afford the opportunity for the special contribution of our party, with the devotion and campaigning enthusiasm of our membership, to be made in a constructive and helpful fashion to the common tasks of the Labour movement in this period. [18]

After July 1945 the party returned to its wartime theme of increased production. Writing in Labour Monthly in September 1945, J.R. Campbell offered a new analysis of this Labour government as already socialist:

The trade unionists must recognise the fact that they are operating in a controlled economy which is being steered by a Labour government. They will have to consider the bearing of any wage policy which they put forward on the entire economic policy that the government is pursuing.

It followed that any obstacle to increased production would have to be resisted. Campbell pointed to the slow rate of work in London’s blitz repairs, and employed the novel Marxist concept that social democracy had to be defended even against the interests of ordinary workers:

A minority of building workers did not play the game and this scallywag minority was not combated sufficiently by the active trade unionists on the jobs. Sabotage of the Labour government may come not merely from the class-conscious employers but from the class-conscious in the ranks of the workers. [19]

The impact of Communist support for Labour in 1945–1947 was felt most strongly in the workplaces. Although the Communist Party did not call for strike breaking, as it had in 1941–1945, it did do everything to stress that Labour policies had removed the need for protest. Arthur Horner, now general secretary of the miners’ NUM, insisted that nationalisation had solved the need for workers’ control:

Everything now depends upon an adequate supply of coal to keep the present industry active. Production is the key, not only to a prosperous mining industry, but also to an expanding and vigorous British economy ... The main fight of the future will not be between management and men, it will be a struggle against Mother Nature. [20]

The CP continued to insist on the need for Joint Production Committees. There was little emphasis on the need to build the unions from below. Instead far more weight was put on the need to change unions from above. More left wing officials were needed. More trade unionists should be appointed onto the several boards running the nationalised industries. As in 1941–1945, party propaganda stressed the need to replace strikes with visits to government ministers, delegations, and appeals for outside intervention.

Cold War

In March 1947 President Truman announced that the US would intervene against the left in Greece. He established what became known as the ‘Truman Doctrine’, the idea that the American state could intervene against any movement or revolution which it considered ‘communist’. In June 1948 Marshall Aid was announced: economic support to the countries of Europe, provided that they distanced themselves from communism. In response, and in October 1947, the CPs of East and West Europe formed the Cominform, or Communist Information Bureau, a regular gathering of Communist Parties to co-ordinate political activity. Although the British CP was not a member of the Cominform, it was expected to follow Cominform decisions.

In Britain the Labour government stressed the need for deflation. In the spring of 1948, the chancellor, Stafford Cripps, announced a wage freeze. In 1948 wage increases were held to 4 percent, against an inflation rate of 5 percent. In 1949 wage increases were held to 2 percent, against an inflation rate of 4 percent. As Labour started to attack on the wage front, so its other reforms were toned down: the nationalisation of steel was dropped, and there were no new reforming bills on the scale of 1945–1947. At the same time, and as part of the Cold War, the TUC General Council attacked the role of Communists in the trade unions. In November 1948 the TUC launched an anti-Communist pamphlet, Defend Democracy. In July 1949 the TGWU conference passed a rule insisting that no union positions could be held by members of the CP. Eight members of the TGWU’s executive were sacked. Bert Papworth was removed from the General Council of the TUC. Other officials were removed from posts in the AEU, the shop workers’ union USDAW, and the Civil Service Clerical Association. [21]

In the worsening climate at the start of the Cold War, the Communist Party had little real choice but to turn to the left. It would have been absurd to continue the earlier message of increased production for the Labour government, while the same government was busy purging communists from the civil service. However, the CP returned, not to the left, but to the sectarian habits of 1929–1934. The political message was slightly different. The party coloured its sectarianism with a different touch of left patriotism. But the effect was the same. The Communist Party separated itself from majority opinion on the left.

In 1949, for example, Koni Zilliacus MP was expelled from the Labour Party for his opposition to Attlee’s leadership. Although he was favourable towards Russia, he was also a supporter of Marshal Tito in Yugoslavia, who had now fallen out with Stalin. Labour Monthly accused Zilliacus of ‘frantically treading water in an ocean of lies’. The anti-Tito line was backed up by James Klugmann’s From Trotsky To Tito, a book so dishonest that even Branson separates herself from it. [22] What was true of high politics was also true of cultural life. In August 1948 the Soviet geneticist Lysenko received official backing from Stalin for his idea that changing environment would lead to inheritable genetic modifications. The CP followed suit, antagonising leading party scientists, such as J.B.S. Haldane. [23]

The Communist Party’s new line can be seen at its worst when it comes to immigration. The CP did welcome Jamaican immigrants on the Empire Windrush in 1948. But, for the sake of Cold War opportunism, it opposed the immigration of ‘fascist Poles’ and Eastern Europeans to Britain. Harry Pollitt’s book, Looking Ahead, combined left wing rhetoric with nationalist attacks on migration:

Does it make sense that we allow 500,000 of our best young men to put their names down for emigration abroad when at the same time we employ Poles who ought to be back in their own country? [24]

Similarly, the 1951 version of The British Road To Socialism combined left attacks on the Labour Party with an unpleasant chauvinism:

The Communist Party declares that the leaders of the Tory, Liberal and Labour parties and their spokesmen in the press and on the BBC are betraying the interests of Britain to dollar imperialism. Our call is for the unity of all true patriots to defend British national interest and independence. [25]

The party in crisis

Because the Communist Party failed to carry through any consistent or principled relationship to the Labour Party in government, the years 1945–1951 saw a decline in its strength and influence. The CP’s membership fell dramatically, though with a blip in 1947–1948, as the CP relaunched its factory branches and enjoyed a brief, fading, moment of success.


March 1946



June 1947


April 1948


March 1949


May 1950


March 1951


The best sign of the withering away of the Communist Party is in its decline as an electoral force. In 1945 the party stood 22 candidates, of whom 9 reached the 12.5 percent needed to save their deposits. In total the candidates won 102,780 votes. In the 1950 election the CP stood 100 candidates, of whom just three saved their deposits. In total the 100 candidates received just 91,815 votes: less than the 22 candidates in 1945. Piratin and Gallacher lost their seats.






1945 result


1950 result

W. Gallacher

West Fife




Rhondda East



G.J. Jones




Howard Hill

Sheffield Brightside



The CP lost elections and failed to win new members. Also a large number of Communist Party members began to criticise the CP’s politics, and especially its stampede to the right in 1945–1947. Edward Upward’s semi-autobiographical novel, The Rotten Elements, describes how Alan and Elsie Sebrill (Edward and Hilda Upward) came into conflict with the CP’s hierarchy in 1946 and 1947. The Sebrills became increasingly disillusioned with the party’s patriotic language. They argued openly against the call for increased production. Finally, they were expelled, and left bitter that the Communist Party had shifted so far to the right. [26] Again in 1946 Eric Heffer moved a resolution on behalf of the CP’s Hertford branch, accusing the leadership of having abandoned Lenin: ‘the perspective of proletarian revolution has been abandoned’. He, too, was expelled. [27] Each of these dissidents was encouraged by the ‘Australian letter’: a message from the Australian CP accusing the British party of betraying the basic ideas of Marxism. [28] Harry McShane also left the party in 1950. He had been a leading Communist for many years, but he felt that CP’s lurch to the right had gone too far. It was ‘a complete departure from all the Marxist fundamentals.’ [29]


Although the Communist Party did fail to offer any consistent alternative to Labour in this period, it would be absurd to suggest that the party got everything wrong. In 1946, for example, the CP took an active part in the London Squatters Movement, when working class families, faced with the housing shortage, were encouraged to occupy empty blocks of luxury flats, such as the Duchess of Bedford House in Kensington. [30] Similarly in 1947–1948 Communists were centrally involved in the fight against fascism. Ordinary members of the CP were the backbone of the anti-Mosley movement. Again in 1951 Communist dockers played an honourable part in the dock strikes which led to the repeal of Order 1305, wartime legislation which had banned strikes, and was still in force. These campaigns are distinguished by the open and unsectarian way in which ordinary Communists did work with other forces, while fighting for specific gains. In the 1951 strike, for example, the four arrested stewards included not only three Communists, but also one docker, Albert Timothy, who was a Catholic and a member of the Labour Party. This tells us something about the Communist Party. No matter how opportunist or sectarian its leadership, the CP remained a mass workers’ party. Among its ordinary members there was a real desire to change the world. Communists often acted against or despite their formal politics, and the majority played a positive role, not only in building trade unions, but also often in promoting the interests of the rank and file.

However, because ordinary Communists looked to Russia for their model of socialism, and because of the degeneration of the Russian Revolution, there was a contradiction in the minds of most Communists. Noreen Branson touches on this dilemma:

In Britain those who joined the Communist Party were dedicated to the socialist cause and, in many cases, were prepared to make great personal sacrifices in working for it ... What party members did not fully appreciate was that, in countries like the Soviet Union, and its post-war European neighbours, this was no longer the case. From the late 1920s onwards, the Communist Party of the Soviet Union had become the party which people joined if they wanted to further their careers. Here the party was closely intertwined with the state machine, a power structure which had become more and more centralised and bureaucratic; ‘Soviets’ were no longer a system of ‘rule from below’. [31]

What this account misses is the centrality of the Russian experience to every aspect of life in the CP. Being wrong about Russia did not just mean being wrong about Russia; it also meant that ordinary working class Communists were wrong about nationalisation, wrong about production, and wrong in their relations to the Labour Party.

Revolutionaries working in Britain in the 1990s can learn from the experiences of the CP, and especially from its mistakes. The CP had a tendency to zigzag: to shift from ultra right wing politics which glossed over and concealed the CP’s differences with reformism, to ultra left wing politics which stressed the CP’s differences, as a point of principle, and which antagonised ordinary workers who remained members of the Labour Party. The model for us should be in the things which the CP got right: such as the squatters’ campaign, or the docks strikes in 1951, when ordinary members of the Communist Party successfully worked together with other forces, in temporary alliances, without either liquidating their politics or degenerating into sectarianism. The tragedy is that the positive examples are few, while the negative examples are many. It is up to revolutionaries today to ensure that future generations of socialists can not make the same negative judgement of us.


I would like to thank James Eaden who granted me access to his work on the Communist Party and the early years of the war. Thanks also to Duncan Hallas for commenting on the first draft of this article.

1. C. Bambery Introduction, in B. Pearce and M. Woodhouse, A History of Communism in Britain (London 1995), p. iv.

2. J. Waterson, The Party at its Peak, International Socialism 69 (1995), pp. 77–85.

3. C. Rosenberg, Labour and the fight Against Fascism, International Socialism 39 (1988), pp. 55–95.

4. I. Birchall, The British Communist Party, International Socialism 1/50 (1972), pp. 24–34.

5. S. Jeffreys, The Communist Party and the Rank and File, International Socialism 10 (1980), pp. 1–23.

6. This process is described in J. Eaden, ‘A Society of Great Friends’: Rank and File British Communists and the Imperialist War 1939–1940 (unpublished MA dissertation, Sheffield Hallam University 1996), pp. 33–40.

7. N. Branson, History of the Communist Party of Great Britain 1945–1951 (London 1997), p. 5.

8. J. Owen, Labour Monthly, September 1941. Quoted in R. Black, Stalinism in Britain (London 1970), p. 170.

9. N. Branson, op. cit., p. 29.

10. R. Croucher, Engineers at War 1939–1945 (Manchester 1982).

11. N. Branson, op. cit., p. 79.

12. S. Jeffreys, op. cit., p. 19.

13. N. Branson, op. cit., p. 23 and p. 96; S Jeffreys, op. cit., p. 21.

14. Ibid., op. cit., p. 35.

15. Ibid., op. cit., p. 111.

16. I. Birchall, op. cit., p. 26; R. Black, op. cit., p. 204.

17. I. Birchall, op. cit., p. 26. The best account of strikes under the Labour government is in G. Ellen, Labour and Strikebreaking, International Socialism 24 (1984), pp. 45–74.

18. N. Branson, op. cit., p. 116.

19. Quoted in R. Black, op. cit., p. 206.

20. N. Branson, op. cit., p. 138.

21. Ibid., pp. 177–190; I. Birchall, op. cit., p. 27.

22. Labour Monthly, December 1949; quoted in I. Birchall, op. cit., p. 27; N. Branson, op. cit., pp. 197–198.

23. N. Branson, op. cit., pp. 174–175.

24. R. Black, op. cit., p. 211.

25. CPGB, The British Road To Socialism (London 1951 edn), p. 10.

26. E. Upward, The Rotten Elements (London 1979 edn).

27. N. Branson, op. cit., p. 142; E. Heffer, Never a Yes Man: The Life and Politics of an Adopted Liverpudlian (London 1991).

28. R. Samuel, The Lost World Of British Communism, New Left Review (NLR) 154 (1985), pp. 3–53; NLR 155 (1985), pp. 119–124; NLR 156 (1986), pp. 63–113; and NLR 165 (1987), 52–91; here NLR 155.

29. McShane and J. Smith, Harry McShane: No Mean Fighter (London 1978), pp. 241–4.

30. N. Branson, op. cit., pp. 118–128.

31. Ibid., p. 198.

Top of page

ISJ 2 Index | Main Newspaper Index

Encyclopedia of Trotskyism | Marxists’ Internet Archive

Last updated on 17.4.2012