First name/s: James
Last name: Dickens
Known names / nicknames:
Date of birth: 04/04/1931
Year of birth: 1931
Life before Ruskin
Date and place of birth 1931 Glasgow
Family Working class parents lived in Glasgow tenements
Work Telegraph boy and Railway clerk.
Education Shawlands Academy left at 14; Newbattle Abbey College
Politics/Trade union activity Also worked for Glasgow Forward newspaper, a lively newspaper which represented working class interests
Trade Union membership (at time of entry to Ruskin)
Life at Ruskin
Dates at Ruskin 1950s?
Source of funding
Subjects studied at Ruskin
Life after Ruskin
Education Gained a BA (Hons) in modern history and politics at St. Catherine’s College, Oxford in 1956
Clerical job with NCB; industrial relations officer with NCB 1958-65 then management consultant from 1965
After losing parliamentary seat resumed career in industrial relations consultancy
Assistant director of manpower at National Freight Corporation;
Director of Manpower Services at National Water Corporation;
Chief Personnel Officer at Agricultural & Food Research Council;
Retired in 1991
Politics/trade union activity
Represented Millbank ward on Westminster Council 1962 – 65;
Labour MP for Lewisham West 1966-70 with a 2,034 vote majority
Member of the Tribune Group; helped formulate economic policy summarised in Beyond the Freeze;
Vocal critic of Harold Wilson’s government; especially opposed to stop go economic policies of James Callaghan and Roy Jenkins; prices and incomes policy which froze incomes but not prices; opposed in place of strife on grounds that its penal clauses would split Labour party. Opposed to Britain’s entry into European Economic Community.
Lost seat to John Selwyn Gummer in 1970 by 760 votes.
Selected as candidate for Newham North East in 1979 elction, following defection of Reg Prentice to conservatives. Resigned as candidate as he failed to secure unananimous backing of constituency executive committee.
Served on executive committee of Labour Action for Peace and served for many years as a school governor. Resigned from Labour Party in protest against invasion of Iraq in 2003
First marriage dissolved in 1965; married Carolyn Casey in 1969 – survived by her and four stepsons
Place & date of death 5 April 2013
Date of death: 05/04/2013
Year of death: 2013
Achievements / Publications
OBE in 1991
Material in archives or already published articles
Notes on Image/s
Comment of contributor/s and sources
See sources above.
“A persistent and articulate left-wing critic of Harold Wilson’s government during the parliament of 1966-70” Daily Telegraph, obituary, May 16th. 2013