Ben Tillet Close, E16

Place Name

Named in honour of Benjamin Tillett (September 11, 1860 – January 27, 1943), a socialist, trade union leader and politician. He was a leader of the “new unionism” of 1889 that focused on organising unskilled workers and in particular on the dockers. He played a major role in founding the Dockers Union, and had a prominent role as a strike leader in dock strikes in 1911 and 1912 taking 20,000 out. He was instrumental in forming the National Transport Workers’ Federation in 1910 which went on to be part of the Transport and General Workers’ Union in 1922. However Tillett lost out to his deputy Ernest Bevin to lead the new union. He was also a member of the general council of the Trades Union Congress (TUC) throughout the 1920s, and its Chairman in 1928-9. The name of the road is spelled incorrectly.

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