Dublin Council of Trade Unions

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The Dublin Council of Trade Unions is the trades council for County Dublin in Ireland.

In 1884, 34 craft unions were involved in organising an exhibition of artisan work in Dublin. This necessitated regular meetings, and encouraged the unions to continue working together. As a result, in 1886, 27 of the unions founded the Dublin Council of Trade Unions, with a meeting at the Odd Fellow's Hall.[1] The organisation was successful, and by 1894 it was able to convene a meeting of trade unions from across Ireland, which formed the Irish Trade Union Congress (ITUC).[2]

In the 1920s, supporters of the Irish Transport and General Workers' Union left the council to form the Dublin Workers' Council, while supporters of the Workers' Union of Ireland, led by P. T. Daly, dominated the council. They joined the Profintern and disaffiliated from the Labour Party.[3] At the 1923 general election, the council put up four candidates in Dublin seats. None were elected, although Daly beat the official Labour Party candidate.[4][5]

Following the 1945 split in the Irish Trade Union Congress, the Dublin Council split into the Dublin Council of Trade Unions and the Dublin Trades' Union Council. The two reunited in 1960, and the reunited organisation played a leading role in the Dublin Housing Action Committee.[1]


1886: John Simmons
1915: William X. O'Brien
1919: Thomas Farren
1919: P. T. Daly
1944: Mark Daly
1947: Terry Waldron
1954: Jim Collins
1960: Sean Dunne
1968: Tom Brady
1971: Tommy Watt
1978: Paddy Carmody
1979: Sam Nolan


  1. ^ a b "The Dublin Council of Trade Unions", AP/RN, 27 February 1986
  2. ^ Alan Clinton, The Trade Union Rank and File: Trades Councils in Britain, 1900-40, p.101
  3. ^ Emmett O'Connor, "Syndicalism, Industrial Unionism and Nationalism in Ireland", in ed. Steven Hirsch and Lucien van der Walt, Anarchism and Syndicalism in the Colonial and Postcolonial World, pp.219-220
  4. ^ Peter Barberis et al, Encyclopedia of British and Irish Political Organizations, p.734
  5. ^ Arthur Mitchell, Labour in Irish politics, 1890-1930, p.189

Further reading

Séamus Cody, John O'Dowd and Peter Rigney, The Parliament of labour: 100 years of the Dublin Council of Trade Unions

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