BBC Learning Zone Clips

CLIP 11084

Trade unions of the late 19th century

Trade unions of the late 19th century
Key Info
  • Trade unions of the late 19th century
  • Duration: 03:12
  • By 1888 and 1889 new trade unions had used a series of strikes to gain better employment conditions for their members. This clip is introduced by Ben Tillet, who discusses the key problems for labourers in the 1880s and his work to promote greater equality. Many of the unions managed to increase wages and guarentee four hours of work per day. By 1891, one in four workers were members of new unions, but the influences did not last long as by 1896 only one in ten remained in the new unions.
  • Credits: British Pathe, Huntley Film Archives
  • Subject:



    Industrial Relations from 1800s

  • Keywords: trade unions, Ben Tillet, labour. labourer, wages, matchmakers, gas
Ideas for use in class
  • Ask students to make a list of the complaints made by Ben Tillet in this clip, then estimate how successful the unions were and consider their impact.
Background details
  • Clip language : English
  • Aspect ratio : 4x3

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