This Saturday, 06 July 2019, residents of Cradley Heath in the West Midlands will take part in the Women Chaimakers’ Festival in honour of the women who fought to secure better rights for female workers.

The annual event, which takes place on Cradley Heath High Street, recognises the efforts of trade unionist and women’s rights campaigner, Mary Macarthur, and women across the county, who successfully campaigned to abolish exploitative wages within their industry by staging a ten-week strike in 1910.

The family street festival will involve market stalls, debates, street theatre, music and speeches from influential figures such as Stephanie Peacock, MP for Barnsley East, and Cathy Hunt, the historian and author of The National Federation of Women Workers and A History of Women’s Lives in Coventry who is currently writing a biography on Mary Macarthur.

Kate Lea, employment rights manager for Thompsons’ West Midlands-based offices, said: “The Women Chainmakers’ Festival is an important event in the trade union calendar, celebrating the relentless efforts of 800 female chainmakers over 100 years ago, while highlighting employment issues that remain widespread in modern society. 

“At Thompsons, we stand united with our trade union partners, their members and all working people, in continuing the fight for improved workers’ rights.”

For more information about the work we do with trade unions and the support we provide to their members, visit our Standing with Unions campaign page.