1997

Labour had just won the General Election, Tony Blair was Prime Minister.

Speakers: Tony Dubbins, GPMU and TUC President with John Monks and Val Davey MP.

1998

South West TUC teamed up with Workers Beer Company to develop the festival. Eliza Cathy sang, Fiona McTaggart MP, John Edmonds, TUC President, Tess Kingham MP and John Monks spoke.

1999

Ian McCartney MP, Hector McKenzie UNISON and TUC President spoke. Cara Dillon played.

2000

Tony Benn was invited for the first time and was joined on stage by a successor as Bristol South MP, Dawn Primarolo. Jack Jones, Rodney Bickerstaffe, Rita Donahugh and John Monks spoke. The museum was revamped.

2001

Dennis Skinner MP, John Monks, Larry Whitty MP, Agriculture Minister, Linda Gilroy MP spoke. Cara Dillon played again. New sculpture was unveiled. Billy Bragg made his first Tolpuddle appearance.

2002

Estelle Morris MP and Education Minister was heckled by teachers and public service workers.

Students from Theatretrain performed as did Banner Theatre with Migrant Voices. Tony Young, CWU and TUC President, Parmjit Dhanda MP, Margaret Prosser, Gilberto Torres and John Monks spoke.

2003

Roy Bailey and Tony Benn performed their double act. Speakers included: Tony Benn, Brendan Barber as new TUC General Secretary, Nigel DeGruchy, NASUWT and TUC president, Anna Lopez GMB Sex Workers, Andy Gilchrist FBU and Gertrude Hambira. Susan Hedges, Eric Bogle and Billy Bragg played. Reggae band had Tolpuddle audience up and dancing.

2004

A Youth Camp was held with German DGB. Graham Moore and Endangered Species performed Tolpuddle Man.

Tony and Hilary Benn MP joined forces on stage. Hazel Blears MP, Brendan Barber, Roger Lyons, Amicus and TUC President, Mayra, child labourer from Guatemala and Jim Knight MP spoke. The Oyster Band and Billy Bragg played.

2005

A cabaret of comedy and music entertained on Saturday night including the Marxist Magician, Ian Saville. Aidee Moreno, John Monks, ETUC General Secretary, Jim Knight MP, Maung Maung, Abdullah Muhsin, Jeannie Drake, CWU and TUC President, Brendan Barber and Tony Benn spoke. Hang Wangford played and Billy Bragg led local school kids on stage.

2006

Demon Barbers performed as did Get Cape. Wear Cape. Fly! Brendan Barber, Gloria Mills, UNISON and TUC President, Gemma Tumelty NUS President, Jim Knight MP, Shami Chakrabarti of Liberty and Peter Hain MP, Minister for Northern Ireland, spoke. Bleeding Hearts, Netsayi, Freshlyground and Billy Bragg played.

2007

First Green Camp was held. Rain didn’t dampen spirits with comedy from Mark Thomas. The Men They Couldn’t Hang, Chumbawumba and Billy Bragg played. Migrant worker Paulina moved the crowd with her story of abuse, Brendan Barber and Alison Shepherd, UNISON and TUC president, spoke.

Barry Camfield T&G made 80th birthday presentation to Oliver Trevett. Tony Benn spoke too of course.

2008

The Levellers and the Alabama Three proved big crowd pullers.

2009

John Denham MP Secretary of State for Department for Communities and Local Government was well received.

2010 see next page