Radical Lambeth 1978-1992

A Humanities, Social Science & Health project

The research examines the role played by the Labour left in Lambeth during the period 1978-1992 when they controlled the council. Lambeth was a very poor borough, with a chronic housing problem, institutional racism, two riots against police violence (1981 and 1985), the campaign against rate-capping and a large anti-poll tax campaign. Lambeth was also a council associated with the ‘loony left’ policies – many of which today are mainstream thinking on race and gender equality. 

The research – mostly interviews with participants from the time – will investigate what the goals were of the participants involved in the struggles of the 1980s, as well as how they responded to both Margaret Thatcher and Neil Kinnock who sought to undermine and remove the left from power in the borough. 

With the current leadership of the Labour Party by Jeremy Corbyn, the research asks – what is the legacy of the Labour left and what does it mean for the current struggle between left and right in the Labour Party?

If you are interested in British labour movement history, trade unions, the Labour party, the 1980s, Thatcherism or local government studies then this is a real opportunity to bring to life a period that has yet to receive a full historical account.

The PhD research at King’s College London will result in a book for publication as well as an ongoing website which will feature photos and historical material, from leaflets to press cuttings along with videos.

Simon Hannah

Academic Institution: King's College University
Course: PhD research degree in contemporary British History, 2016-2018
User Profile:Simon Hannah

What is your motivation for doing a PhD?

To add to our historical understanding of crucial moments in Labour movement and left wing history

Why did you choose your research topic/title

Lambeth is a borough with a history of resistance, its unique contribution to 1980s politics deserves to be told.

Your achievments

First class degree in International Relations and Politics from Westminster University Helped organise student protests against the trippling of tuition fees in 2010 A qualified secondary school teacher in Citizenship Co-authored a book in 2012 titled Beyond Capitalism? The future of radical politics

What difference will this research make in your life and the lives of others?

The research examines the role played by the Labour left in Lambeth during the period 1978-1992 when they controlled the council. Lambeth was a very poor borough, with a chronic housing problem, institutional racism, two riots against police violence (1981 and 1985), the campaign against rate-capping and a large anti-poll tax campaign. Lambeth was also a council associated with the ‘loony left’ policies – many of which today are mainstream thinking on race and gender equality. The research - mostly interviews with participants from the time - will investigate what the goals were of the participants involved in the struggles of the 1980s, as well as how they responded to both Margaret Thatcher and Neil Kinnock who sought to undermine and remove the left from power in the borough. With the current leadership of the Labour Party by Jeremy Corbyn, the research asks - what is the legacy of the Labour left and what does it mean for the current struggle between left and right in the Labour Party? If you are interested in British labour movement history, trade unions, the Labour party, the 1980s, Thatcherism or local government studies then this is a real opportunity to bring to life a period that has yet to receive a full historical account. The PhD research at King's College London will result in a book for publication as well as an ongoing website which will feature photos and historical material, from leaflets to press cuttings along with videos.

PhD research proposal

research proposal Lambeth Labour.doc

Radical Lambeth 1978-1992

A Humanities, Social Science & Health project

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Radical Lambeth 1978-1992

A Humanities, Social Science & Health project

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