An estimated 35,000 workers today (Wednesday, 18 August) brought industrial production to a standstill as they staged what was believed to be the biggest demonstration ever seen in Scotland.
SV Vic Father puts on safety helmet at shipyard
LV Starn of ship under construction PAN TO Vic Feather walking through yard
GV PAN Workers assembling & MV Demonstrators gathered for march (2 shots)
SV ZOOM OUT Trade Union officials leading march through streets
SV Demonstrators march carrying banners and placards (5 shots)
SV & SV PAN Marchers assembled to hear speeches
MV Vic Feather speaking
TRANSCRIPT: COMMENTATOR: "Mr. Feather began the day by visiting Upper Clyde shipbuilders at Clyde Bank yard which was once John Brown's. He told the workers he would plead with the Government tomorrow to withhold or suspend their redundancy notices. It would be a bloody shame he said if a place like this were reduced to scrap. In mid-afternoon, the friends of thousands of workers from all over Britain began to assemble in Glasgow's George Square for the demonstration. Many of the demonstrators had come to Glasgow on five special trains and many thousands more had come by specially hired coaches. Mr. Feather and other Trade Union leaders including Mr. Hugh Scanlon of the Union workers led the procession, in which there were big contingents from the Midlands. Official police estimate that the number of marchers was 35 to 40 thousand, unofficial counts put the turnout at between 70 and 80 thousand, and at places along the route to Glasgow Green, there were thousands more people who, had come to watch, At the Green itself, this marchers heard from the Trade Union leaders. First Mr. Feather
(SEQ. 7): MR. FEATHER: "... of the Unions, the S.T.U.C., the co-ordinating committee of the shop stewards, then I plead we go forward to the Government with a co-ordinated demand for not a shell of a shipyard, not an economic graveyard, but a throbbing, surging, Upper Clyde shipbuilders with a developing Clydeside and with guaranteed employment for every man in the yard, and every man who is wanting work, willing to work and able to work."
Initials TA/PN/BB/0145 BB/0135
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Background: An estimated 35,000 workers today (Wednesday, 18 August) brought industrial production to a standstill as they staged what was believed to be the biggest demonstration ever seen in Scotland.
The men, many accompanied by their wives and children, were protesting against the Government's plans to prune the Upper clyde shipbuilders, cutting the work force there from 8,290 men to 2,500.
Thousands of workers from English industrial areas joined the march and one of the demonstration's organisers called it the biggest protest ever held in Scotland. Heading the procession was the General Secretary of the Trades Union Congress, Mr. Vic Feather, and former Minister of Technology in the Labour Government, Mr. Anthony Wedgwood Benn.
Mr. Feather addressed the assembled workers at Glasgow Green and made his intentions clear, saying that he intended to plead with Government leaders for the salvation of the yard's full working force.
The shipyards threatened with closure include John Brown's, which built the famous Queen liners.
This film is supplied with an English commentary which may be used if desired, a transcript of which appears on this page.