Durham Miners Gala


Levellers Day Festival

Tolpuddle Martyers Museum and Festival

Wigan Diggers’ Festival


Womens Chainmakers Festival




The history of the Burston and Shimpling parish courteously of parish council:

Burston Chapel

The earliest record of the existence of the Burston Chapel is 1825.  It was originally part of the Primitive Methodist denomination and both lay peacher Tom, and after finding disagreement with Rev. Eland’s sermons, Annie worshipped there.

Burston Community Primarily School

Apart from a small porch on the left side of the building, little of the original council school remains from the time of the Higdons. But Burston still maintains a vibrant primarily school.

Burston Crown

The Crown Inn pub has been at the heart of the village for generations. For 16 years it was managed by Violet Potter, who as a children was the leader of the striking children. Later her brother Tom, baptised on the Green and named after Tom Higdon was also the Inn’s landlord.


History – Rural Trade Unionism

Tolpuddle Martyers

For the story of the six agricultural labourers and trade union pioneers that has inspired generations of people, including Joseph Arch and Tom Higdon:

Joseph Arch

Joseph Arch (10 November 1826 – 12 February 1919) played a key role in what Karl Marx called the “Great awakening” of the agricultural workers in 1872. Tom Higdon interviewed 83 year old Joseph Arch in 1909 for a National Labour Press pamphlet.

George Edwards

Sir George Edwards OBE (5 October 1850 – 6 December 1933) founded the ‘Second National union of agricultural workers. George Edwards recruited Tom Higdon as a union organiser in 1907 after meeting at The Plough pub, Wood Dalling in 1907

Unite the Union

Unite’s rural and agricultural sector, which in its current and predecessor forms has represented the interests of agricultural workers since 1906. Tom Higdon was first elected to the then agricultural labourers union executive in 1911.

Unite – Landworker

Unite’s Landworker is a dedicated newspaper for rural, agricultural and food workers. For 100 years The Landworker has dealt with agricultural issues and all aspects of food production. Tom Higdon was a regular contributor. Download the most recent issues below.



Southern and Eastern Region (SERTUC)

SERTUC is the largest of the TUC’s six English regions and covers three of the former government regions: London, the South East, and East of England. SERTUC tirelessly supports the Burston Strike School Museum and Rally

TUC Union Finder

If you’re not sure which union is the right one for you to join, the TUC union finder can help. Use this tool to find either unions that represent staff in your industrial sector, or those that represent others doing the same job as you.


Union History

The Union Makes Us Strong: TUC History Online is a partnership initiative between London Metropolitan University and the Trades Union Congress with digitised photo and document resources from Trade Union history. It holds material related to the Burston Strike.

Burston Rally Photographer

Since the first of the modern Burston Strike School rallies, Norfolk born and educated Peter Everard-Smith, Strike School trustee and professional photographer has been recording the event as can be seen in our website gallery.