How to use the site

Who is the site meant for

- Anyone interested in British history, including:

- Historians: historians of social, economic and political history.
- Researchers: academics, journalists and people studying family history.
- Students: secondary, further, higher and adult education.
- Trade unionists

What is available

- Video clips: 44 clips of interviews with various key figures in recent union history, filmed as part of the TUC Millennium Film Project, talking about their experiences of events in the past 50 years of political, economic and union history including the Social Contract, In Place of Strife, the Heath Government, the Labour Governments under Wilson and Callaghan, the Thatcher and Major Governments.

- Audio clips: interviewees share their experiences of various occupations, including engineering, public transport, health care, entertainment, journalism, factory and office work.

- Full transcripts: people describe their working lives and experiences.

- Online archive of over 400 images: including photographs, posters, artefacts and documents illustrating key people and events; images of working lives in various trades and occupations. Depictions of important union actions, including meetings, strikes, pickets, work-ins, and demonstrations, such as Wapping, Upper Clyde Shipbuilders, the Pentonville 5 and the Shrewsbury 2.

- Narratives: seven experts have contributed background essays that provide context for the online resources.

- Timeline: search the resources by period and read background pages written by academics and experts.


We have categorised all the resources under seven themes:

- Health and safety
- Workers' education
- Women at work
- Employment law
- Trade union organisation
- Race and trade unions
- White collar unionism

How can the site be used

The resources available though this site are free to use for personal and educational use, but there are clear copyright restrictions concerning their publication, see permissions for clarification.

- To produce educational resources including classroom activities, based around the interviews and images. - To create presentations, with information from narratives, illustrations from audio and video clips, and
images and documents. - To help write essays and papers
- To carry out research

The TUC Library Collections

These digitised resources are a small representation of the much larger collections available at the TUC Library Collections at London Metropolitan University. These are available for reference by appointment, please contact us at