We were delighted to kick off our 120th birthday year with a memorable evening of talks, culminating in a stirring keynote speech from the General Secretary of the Trades Union Congress, Frances O’Grady.
On the same day that witnessed the college’s historic inaugural meeting in the town hall 120 years ago, we were delighted to welcome friends and colleagues from today’s Trade Union and Labour movements, both in the audience and on the stage, and enjoyed an evening of shared memories and stimulating debate.
Ahead of Frances O’Grady’s keynote, we heard moving testimonies from former Ruskin students Tim Wakeman, now a Social Housing activist, Debbie Hollingsworth, Chair of The Ruskin Fellowship, and Jim Kennedy, National Officer for Unite the Union. Paul Di Felice, the college Principal, and Jim Mowatt, Director of Education at Unite the Union, also spoke, with Chair of Governors Doug Nicholls chairing the successful evening.
Frances summed up the common theme of the evening, when she said: “When you speak to former Ruskin students about their time here, that same phrase keeps cropping up: ‘It changed my life’. But of course the point is that they changed other people’s lives too.”
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