At the Ministry of Labour to-day (Thursday, 4th December), Mr. P. H. St. John Wilson,?
At the Ministry of Labour to-day (Thursday, 4th December), Mr. P. H. St. John Wilson, Chief Industrial Commissioner, on behalf of the Minister, Mr. Iain Macleod handed over to Mr. A. Barker, Director of the Incorporated Federated Associations of Boot and Shoe Manufacturers and Mr. L. Poole, J.P., General Secretary of the National Union of Boot and Shoe Operatives, being respectively the employers' and workpeoples' secretaries of the Boot and Shoe Manufacturing Trade National Joint Standing Committee, the original copy of the Terms of Settlement of the Boot and Shoe Trade Dispute, dated 19th April, 1895.
This settlement formed the foundation for the working conditions and provides procedure for the settlement of disputes within the industry. It provides that "no strike or lock-out shall be entered into on the part of any body of workmen, member of the National Union, or any manufacturer represented on any Local Board of Arbitration", and this undertaking has been faithfully maintained ever since.
In handing over the original copy of this Agreement which has been preserved in the Ministry's archives and will now be placed in the Northampton Museum, Mr. St. John Wilson congratulated the industry on its fine record over so many years in the settlement of industrial disputes by peaceful methods. He said that while it was in fact quite wrong to think that this country is more afflicted by strikes than other leading industrial nations - the facts were quite otherwise - the record of the boot and shoe industry was, so far as he knew, unique, and certainly one that other great industries must envy.