News International Strike 1985-6
25 images Created 25 Jan 2014
The Wapping dispute was, along with the miners' strike of 1984-5, a significant turning point in the history of the trade union movement and of UK industrial relations. It started on 24 January 1986 when some 6,000 newspaper workers went on strike after protracted negotiation with their employers, News International (parent of Times Newspapers and News Group Newspapers, and chaired by Rupert Murdoch). News International had built and clandestinely equipped a new printing plant for all its titles in the London district of Wapping, and when the print unions announced a strike it activated this new plant with the assistance of the Electrical, Electronic, Telecommunications and Plumbing Union (EETPU). Although individual members of the National Union of Journalists went to work in Wapping and NUJ Chapels continued to operate, the National Union continued to urge their members not to work inside the wire unless there was an agreement covering the transfer to Wapping and the responsibilities taken on by journalists. Many NUJ members accepted this advice and refused to go to Wapping. During the dispute they became known as "refuseniks".