Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/articles/17598

Posted on 22 October 2013 at 10:22 GMT

Campaign victory for rebel councillors as local pool to be re-opened

Coxteth councillors Keith and Don campaigning with others to save Oaklands pool, Southampton, photo Southampton SP

Coxteth councillors Keith and Don campaigning with others to save Oaklands pool, Southampton, photo Southampton SP   (Click to enlarge)

In May 2012 Southampton voted Labour overwhelmingly in the hope of ending the misery meted out by the Tory-led council. Southampton's council staff had fought hard to defend their pay and conditions and Labour had a mandate from the people of Southampton to protect local public services and jobs.

The new administration, however, showed it intended to carry on with the Con-Dems’ dirty work. Within months the then Coxford ward Labour councillors Keith Morrell and Don Thomas were suspended and then expelled from Southampton council Labour group for the ‘crime’ of opposing the closure of a swimming pool.

Their stand received enormous support from the local community and across the city. They also received the backing of local council trade unions.

Having set up a new group in 2012, Southampton Councillors Against Cuts, Don and Keith can now report on an important campaign victory:

Under intense pressure from the 'Save Oaklands Pool' campaign, Southampton Labour council has been forced to agree to refurbish and re-open the swimming pool.

A hold has been put on the planned demolition of the pool building and £1.25 million earmarked to do it up.

Everyone involved in the 'Save Oaklands Pool' campaign - users and staff, local residents, community groups, the trades unions representing council workers, and members of the Socialist Party - deserve recognition for what they have achieved.

That recognition is being shamefully denied to them by Labour councillors, who closed the pool in the first place, and who now want to take all the credit for "saving" it!

We should remind everyone that last year the council leader said, "Oaklands pool is closed and will stay closed.

"Get used to it!" But we refused to "get used to it" and the campaign to save the pool from demolition began.

Campaign pressure

If it wasn't for the Oaklands pool campaign the building would have been demolished long ago, it was only the hard work of all of the above that forced Labour to rethink, finally doing a U-Turn. Now we need to get Oaklands swimming pool open as soon as possible.

We demanded right at the beginning of the campaign that the Labour administration use some of the money it will get from selling the school site on re-opening the boarded-up swimming pool and giving it a major refurbishment. That demand has now, at long last, been adopted!

However the Labour council is still refusing to take responsibility for the day-to-day running of the pool and is instead trying to push that huge task onto a voluntary community group to do the job for them, leaving former council workers at the pool out of their jobs.

We have always had reservations about the viability of this arrangement and believe the council should run the pool.

Now the decision's been made, the council should go full steam ahead and not waste any more time. Campaigners will continue to put on pressure to get work started immediately.

*********************

Keith and Don have proved in action that councillors do have a choice - it is possible for them to refuse to implement the cuts, as the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition has always argued.
They now sit on the TUSC steering committee and participate in the campaign to build a political alternative to all the austerity parties.
See www.tusc.org.uk for more.

This version of this article was first posted on the Socialist Party website on 22 October 2013 and may vary slightly from the version subsequently printed in The Socialist.

Why not click here to join the Socialist Party, or click here to donate to the Socialist Party.






Related links:

Southampton:

triangleSchools "can't go any further" - stop the cuts: set deficit budgets now

triangleFawley refinery canteen strikers tell their employer: "pay up"

triangleFord workers vote for action

triangleSouthampton councillors faced with angry anti-cuts campaigners

triangleCorbyn visits Southampton on marginal seat tour

Pool:

triangleThem & Us

triangleSouthampton Labour council faces crisis as cuts hit city

triangleVictory against disabled transport cuts in Derby

triangleCampaigns news in brief

Councillors:

triangleUnite local government sector plans strike ballot

triangleSurveying Labour councillors - will they fight cuts?

Council:

triangleSheffield Labour council threatens peaceful protesters with prison

triangleSalford Unison condemns pay cuts

Labour:

triangleHundreds turn out for rally aimed at removing west Wales Tory MP

Swimming:

triangleInvest in grassroots sports needs

Council workers:

triangleBin workers vote to continue action following rally

Reports and campaigns

Reports and campaigns

19/10/17

North West

Arriva North West bus drivers strike over pay

18/10/17

Democratic rights

Conference on state spies: who's watching who?

18/10/17

Leeds

Striking back against sackers' charter at Leeds Uni

18/10/17

Royal Mail

Royal Mail bosses block strike - back postal workers

18/10/17

PCS

Balloting members on the pay cap

18/10/17

Art

'Dazzling' Bad Art show points to socialist future

18/10/17

Council

Sheffield Labour council threatens peaceful protesters with prison

18/10/17

South West Wales

Hundreds turn out for rally aimed at removing west Wales Tory MP

18/10/17

NHS

Uprising to save the NHS!

18/10/17

Socialism

Can you donate to the Socialism 2017 appeal?

18/10/17

East London

No cuts - hands off King George A&E!

18/10/17

North London

North London hospital workers fight cuts and job losses

18/10/17

BAE

Nationalise to save jobs at BAE Systems

18/10/17

Schools

Schools "can't go any further" - stop the cuts: set deficit budgets now

18/10/17

Swansea

Socialist Students 'welcome' Hillary Clinton to Swansea

triangleMore Reports and campaigns articles...


Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party

triangle19 Oct Arriva North West bus drivers strike over pay

triangle18 Oct Russia, October 1917: When workers took power

triangle18 Oct Tories torn - bin them now

triangle18 Oct Royal Mail bosses block strike - back postal workers

triangle18 Oct Balloting members on the pay cap

triangle13 Oct The end of the Tories?

triangle11 Oct Nasty party imploding...drive out the Tories

More ...

triangle21 Oct Birmingham: NSSN Solidarity Forum

triangle23 Oct Chesterfield Socialist Party: The continuing struggle for abortion rights

triangle24 Oct Liverpool Socialist Party: The October Russian Revolution 100 years ago to the day

triangle25 Oct Salford Socialist Party: The October 1917 Russian revolution

More ...

Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

Archive

Archives:

October 2017

September 2017

August 2017

July 2017

June 2017

May 2017

April 2017

March 2017

February 2017

January 2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999

Legal

SP RSS feed RSS

Platform setting: = No platform choice

V2