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Famous rally cancelled for first time in 36-year history

PUBLISHED: 14:34 10 June 2020

The 2020 Burston Strike School Rally has been cancelled amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Picture: Chris Bishop

The 2020 Burston Strike School Rally has been cancelled amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Picture: Chris Bishop

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A rally celebrating the longest strike in British history has been cancelled for the first time since its inception.

Former Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn speaking at Burston Strike School Rally in 2015. Picture: Sonya DuncanFormer Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn speaking at Burston Strike School Rally in 2015. Picture: Sonya Duncan

The Burston Strike School Rally, held in the village near Diss, will not take place on September 6 amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

It is the first time the rally, started in 1984 and held every year since, has been called off.

The 2020 Burston Strike School Rally has been cancelled amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Picture: Chris BishopThe 2020 Burston Strike School Rally has been cancelled amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Picture: Chris Bishop

The Burston Strike School was founded after the sacking of socialist teachers, Tom and Kitty Higdon, in 1914.

Parents and children subsequently refused to attend the local Church of England school, and a new school was instead set up on the village green, remaining open until 1939.

The 2020 Burston Strike School Rally has been cancelled amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Picture: Chris BishopThe 2020 Burston Strike School Rally has been cancelled amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Picture: Chris Bishop

Organiser Miles Hubbard, from the union, Unite, said: “It is with a heavy heart that we have cancelled this year’s rally. Under the circumstances, it would be unwise to go ahead.

“We are confident the rally will return, just as vibrant and its messages of solidarity just as strong, in 2021.”

Former Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn speaking at Burston Strike School Rally in 2016. Picture: Denise BradleyFormer Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn speaking at Burston Strike School Rally in 2016. Picture: Denise Bradley

Past speakers at the rally have included Jeremy Corbyn, Tony Benn and Diane Abbott.

The 2020 Burston Strike School Rally has been cancelled amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Picture: Chris BishopThe 2020 Burston Strike School Rally has been cancelled amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Picture: Chris Bishop

The 2020 Burston Strike School Rally has been cancelled amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Picture: Chris BishopThe 2020 Burston Strike School Rally has been cancelled amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Picture: Chris Bishop


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