Terry Liddle

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syndicalist
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Dec 15 2012 14:45
Terry Liddle

I just read that Terry Liddle has passed away. I recall Terry from his days in the Anarchist Workers Association (ex-ORA). He was our contact with the British platformist group.

Over the years, when looking at ORA/AWA stuff, I often times wondered what happened to Terry. Little did I know he went on to become active in socialist groups. Though, this does not surprise me, given the trajectory of some in some of those historical circles.

I'd be interested in learning more about Terry during his anarchist years. And why he went over to trostskyism.

Well, sorry to hear of his death, regardless of where he wound up politically.

Spikymike
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Dec 15 2012 15:54

I lost touch with Terry apart from the odd meetings at London Anarchist bookfairs a while back now.

We worked closely together with Terry and his close comrade Joe Thomas during the formation of the old Social Revolution Group which Terry subsequently joined and continued working together when that group fused with the UK Solidarity Group but parted again over his suprise continued membership of his local Labour party, one of a number of internal disagreements around that time that resulted in a split from Solidarity and our forming the early UK Wildcat group.

Terry suffered a lot of health problems over the years but was certainly still contributing articles to various radical publication till quite recently. He remained a commited working class militant all his life and will be missed by many. I'm sure others can add a lot more to this thread.

freemind
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Dec 16 2012 11:15

A great comrade and I remember visiting his house in Eltham 20 years ago and I often thought about it over the years not just for the warmth and generosity of the man but also his knowledge on so many issues.Sad loss in many ways.

Spikymike
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Dec 16 2012 14:19

By the way syndicalist I don't think Terry could be described as a 'trotskyist' at all but it seems he did lately join 'the commune' a sort of mixed bag of libertarian socialist and some trotskyist influenced people.

See: http://thecommune.co.uk/

Battlescarred
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Dec 17 2012 09:12

You are mistaken, Syndicalist. Terry was never a member of the AWA or the ORA ( although he joined practically every other group there was) and I doubt very much if he was the AWA contact for you.

He was briefly a Trotskyist when he joined Healy's Socialist Labour League (which became the Workers Revolutionary Party) in the 1960s but was quickly disillusioned when SLL thugs threw him down some stairs!!

When I first knew him in the late 1960s he was a member of the local anarchist group Eltham Sons of Durruti.
I attended his funeral last Monday , for which there was a big turnout. Second funeral/memorial event in two months ( the other was Alan Woodward) which is quite sobering.

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Entdinglichung
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Dec 17 2012 09:19

an obituary by a friend of him: http://tendancecoatesy.wordpress.com/2012/11/22/terry-liddle-1948-2012-c...

Battlescarred
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Dec 17 2012 10:41

At the risk of derailing this thread libcommers might be interested in this announcement about the death of James May who once upon a time posted here as james walsh

http://www.cpgb.org.uk/home/weekly-worker/942/james-may-rebel-with-the-m...

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ocelot
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Dec 17 2012 11:50

Wow. Bummer re James. He always used to make me laugh at CWF conferences, back in the day (even if I mostly didn't agree with his anarcho-tankie politics). Sorry to hear that, but thanks for passing on the news.

syndicalist
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Dec 17 2012 13:00
Quote:
You are mistaken, Syndicalist. Terry was never a member of the AWA or the ORA ( although he joined practically every other group there was) and I doubt very much if he was the AWA contact for you.

OK, I will have to go back to the records. No doubt I can be confused then. And I am then unsure why I would have any recollections of him at all. I hope this is not senility creeping in.

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Auld-bod
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Dec 17 2012 13:21

Battlescarred #5

Just wished to echo what Battlescarred wrote regarding Terry’s non-membership of the ORA and AWA. In the mid 1970s we met with him several times and he was always friendly though never a member.

He was a warm comradely fellow with a down to earth attitude and a wide grasp of political theory. One would have had to be a sectarian bigot to dislike the man.

Battlescarred
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Dec 17 2012 15:08

Yes, as auld-bod says, very warm and comradely with a wide knowledge of a whole range of subjects.

Spikymike
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Dec 17 2012 16:12

syndicalist,

Don't be too hard on yourself. As I said Terry was an active member of the old Social Revolution group which had good relations with both the AWA and Solidarity and a period of co-operation with both. Copies of the Social Revolution journals often recomended the publications of those two groups and shared a friendly typesetter for a while - so you might have got contacts with all three groups mixed up a bit.

Battlescarred
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Dec 17 2012 16:29

The typesetter emigrated to New Zealand where he still lives.

vanilla.ice.baby
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Dec 20 2012 00:29

I met Terry when I first became active politically and joined the Socialist Alliance, he was a member of the Republican Communist Network at the time an ultra-Stalinist grouping and he claimed to have links with the IRSP as well, he was also a member of South Place Ethical Society I believe, and (and I maybe misremembering here) but he was also friendly with some of the ex-Green Anarchist types.

Spikymike
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Mar 16 2013 11:54

I saw posted elswhere reference to a memorial event for Terry on Saturday the 20th April next 2-5pm at Conway Hall , Holborn, Central London - perhaps others might have more details.

martinh
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Mar 16 2013 16:13

I knew Terry for nearly 25 years. I think the contact you may have had with him Syndicalist was probably around Volya or some sort of support for workers in the Eastern Bloc, which I know WSA NY folks were heavily involved with. He was involved in Kulak Press which published material on revolutionary movements in Eastern Europe. The other things he was known for are secularism and republicanism.
Despite the views of some, I don't think you can in anyway characterise Terry's politics as Stalinist or even Leninist. He was an unorthodox libertarian socialist, who was a bit of a joiner but rarely a stayer. He would talk to almost anyone, and share his extensive knowledge.

HarryGolden
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Apr 14 2013 15:13

Just to confirm Spikymike's comment above - there is indeed a memorial meeting for Terry next Saturday, 20th April, 2-5pm, at Conway Hall. There'll be a couple of speeches, contributions from the floor, plus singing by the choir of the Workers Music Association, and a book stall. All are welcome.

vanilla.ice.baby
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Apr 14 2013 21:13
martinh wrote:
Despite the views of some, I don't think you can in anyway characterise Terry's politics as Stalinist or even Leninist. He was an unorthodox libertarian socialist, who was a bit of a joiner but rarely a stayer. He would talk to almost anyone, and share his extensive knowledge.

I don't know or care what his politics where tbh, all I said was he was a member of the Stalinist Republican Communist Network, which he was.

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Kate Sharpley
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Aug 18 2013 16:02

There's an obituary of Terry Liddle in our August 2013 bulletin: http://www.katesharpleylibrary.net/gb5nr3

syndicalist
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Oct 6 2013 04:22

I came across our AWA file... Apparently it was Rob Howell who corresponded with. Terry, it must've been on East Europeasn stuff.