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05 May 2015 44 views
 
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photoblog image The Chartists

The Chartists

The Chartist movement really came about following the reform act of 1832. Working class people felt let down as the extension of the vote only reached the more affluent middle classes. One of the movement's more charismatic leaders Fergus O'Connor came up with the idea of the land plan. Basically this offered the chance of independence and also, as a landowner, the right to vote. O'Connor wrote a book on the management of small farm (typically these were of 2 or 4 acres) and designed the cottages which were well built using local materials in the main.

 

People bought shares in the society and a draw was made and the winners would receive a lease on a property in perpetuity at a nominal rent. Parliament declared this process illegal as it deemed it to be a ballot so O'Connor's efforts to register what he called the National Land Company as a friendly society foundered.

 

Dodford was the last of 5 villages to be built and Rosedene Cottage (now owned by the National trust) is a virtually unchanged example of the original cottages. Of the 37 cottages built in Dodford some still clearly shown their origins; some have been changed beyond recognition and some have gone altogether.

 

Much of what the Chartists campaigned for has come to pass. A vote for every man, voting by secret ballot , payment of MPs and parliamentary constituencies of equal size.

 

When you think that prior to the reform act of 1832 there were many so called rotten boroughs like Old Sarum in Wiltshire which returned two members of parliament but consisted of only 3 houses and 11 voters: there was a lot of scope for change!  

 

 

The Chartists

The Chartist movement really came about following the reform act of 1832. Working class people felt let down as the extension of the vote only reached the more affluent middle classes. One of the movement's more charismatic leaders Fergus O'Connor came up with the idea of the land plan. Basically this offered the chance of independence and also, as a landowner, the right to vote. O'Connor wrote a book on the management of small farm (typically these were of 2 or 4 acres) and designed the cottages which were well built using local materials in the main.

 

People bought shares in the society and a draw was made and the winners would receive a lease on a property in perpetuity at a nominal rent. Parliament declared this process illegal as it deemed it to be a ballot so O'Connor's efforts to register what he called the National Land Company as a friendly society foundered.

 

Dodford was the last of 5 villages to be built and Rosedene Cottage (now owned by the National trust) is a virtually unchanged example of the original cottages. Of the 37 cottages built in Dodford some still clearly shown their origins; some have been changed beyond recognition and some have gone altogether.

 

Much of what the Chartists campaigned for has come to pass. A vote for every man, voting by secret ballot , payment of MPs and parliamentary constituencies of equal size.

 

When you think that prior to the reform act of 1832 there were many so called rotten boroughs like Old Sarum in Wiltshire which returned two members of parliament but consisted of only 3 houses and 11 voters: there was a lot of scope for change!  

 

 

comments (12)

  • Beth
  • United States
  • 5 May 2015, 01:42
Wonderful collage to complete the story!
Bill Phillips: Thank you Beth. I confess to not having known much about the Chartists before going here
  • Ray
  • Thailand
  • 5 May 2015, 03:42
I enjoyed the Illustrated History very much, Bill.
Bill Phillips: Then my work is done Ray
Quite an interesting bit of History very nicely illustrated Bill!
Bill Phillips: On our doorstep and we had never been here before Richard. The guided tour was very interesting
  • Chris
  • England
  • 5 May 2015, 06:55
Fascinating & important stuff
Bill Phillips: It is interesting how much of what they called for has happened. apart from annual parliaments! Can you imagine an election every year?
  • Philine
  • Germany
  • 5 May 2015, 07:13
I never heard about the Chartists before - a very interesting of social history - I have to read your information once more.
Bill Phillips: I had heard of them but knew very little. It is a fascinating part of our history Philine
Little did they know at the time, Bill, that the charts would go on to become a famous item in every teenagers life. I bet they get no credit for it. Still, people like you and I can go and vote. I wonder who worked out the parliamentary boundaries at the time.
Bill Phillips: People seldom get the credit they deserve Chad. Perhaps the boundaries were worked out by the ECB
  • Richard T
  • Suffolk: where the sun rises first in England
  • 5 May 2015, 07:38
I like to see that the workers were allowed into the frame ... I think the chartist might be a tad disappointed about how things have panned out though in the 2ist century
Bill Phillips: no doubt when the results are declared whoever is in government will govern for the benefit of the many, protect the vulnerable and ensure that the greedy pay their fair share so that people like the owner of the daily mail cannot avoid tax by pretending he is French.

No of course they won't
  • Alan
  • United Kingdom
  • 5 May 2015, 08:17
Stick in some decent heating and wifi and I'd be happy to stay there for a while. Sounds like the Chartists had high hopes; I wonder what they would think of those in the gravy train now?
Bill Phillips: You can stay here Look up Rosedene on the NT site. No wifi though.

When they wanted paid MPS it was to allow anyone to be able to stand not to have greedy sods line their pockets. Tony Blair comes to mind immediately
  • blackdog
  • United Kingdom
  • 5 May 2015, 09:00
A very appropriate reminder in election week and fine photos too. Especially like the little B&W one in the corner.
Bill Phillips: Thanks Mike. I did post the B&W on facebook, it is my favourite of these too
Very interesting, Bill, where did it all go wrong...:-(
Bill Phillips: Possibly when we got politicians for whom politics was the only "job" they did apart from line up non exec directorships
There is still a lot to change from our first past the post system. I love the shape of this little house. It has a well tended garden too.
Bill Phillips: We still have first past the post and now that we look like heading for a second hung Parliament perhaps politicians will see that Proportional representation has to come about
  • Pauline
  • United Kingdom
  • 5 May 2015, 12:00
A timely piece of history, Bill.
Bill Phillips: We all toddle off to vote the day after tomorrow.

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