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06 April 2024Mick Bowman talk

Excellent talk with Mick Bowman today in Berwick discussing his trip to Palestine. We also spoke with Joan on Zoom outlining how they formed a Palestine action group in Peebles and how we can combine activities with this side of the Border.

09 March 2024Ceasefire Now!


Members of Film Makers for Palestine, an International group of film makers and cinema workers who stand for an end to genocide and for a Free Palestine, supported by Berwick Trades Union Council and other local Peace activists from both sides of the Border, staged a Demonstration on the steps of Berwick Town Hall on Saturday. They called for an immediate cease fire in Gaza and the West Bank.

Kathryn Elkin.

Berwick upon Tweed.

In Solidarity with Filmakers for Palestine.

08 March 2024Teachers' - Strike Ballot

Hello All -

Please see [below] press release from the Chairs of Governors at Berwick and Tweedmouth Middle Schools. They state that they are "in full support of the union [NASUWT] balloting its members for strike action and its members decision." The NEU are also supporting them. The issue is the failure of Northumberland County Council to properly consult over plans to close middle schools in the Berwick area leading to a large number of job losses.

We are offering our support as well and have asked how best we can assist them. We may have solidarity pickets once more!

Sarah Roelofs

Secretary Berwick Trades Council

From Facebook:

Press release that the Chairs of Governors at Tweedmouth and Berwick Middle Schools have sent out:

We can confirm that the Chairs of Governors at Berwick and Tweedmouth Middle Schools have received a formal notification of the NASUWT's (National Association of Schoolmasters Union of Women Teachers) intention to ballot members for strike action over the failure of Northumberland County Council to properly consult over plans to close middle schools in the Berwick area leading to a large number of job losses.

As school governors, we have major concerns that the consultation process has taken up an inordinate amount of time and energy of both Heads' that would otherwise be spent ensuring their schools continue to thrive. There has also been a complete lack of adequate answers to multiple direct questions Heads have made to Council staff leading the process, resulting in undue pressures on the well-being and mental health of all staff by their employer.

All staff are being encouraged to consider and seek employment now, with added pressure of extremely limited positions. Aside from staff well-being concerns, this will absolutely mean a loss of experienced staff. With little to attract new staff to a closing school, there is the inevitable risk that pupils will be unfairly affected, while existing staff are put through a tortuously long job loss process.

Just as middle schools have not been adequately supported in negotiating this consultation process, we also have to ask ourselves if Berwick Academy and newly created Primary schools have been given anywhere near the appropriate level of backup to allow them to alter their provision for 2 extra year groups.

Funding was initially announced for replacement of the Berwick Academy building over 5 years ago. Despite additional funding being promised, the whole pot was then offered only on condition of a consultation of the education system in Berwick Partnership being entered.

As there have been broken promises over jobs, and a woeful lack of support and concise, consistent information, we cannot be confident this funding will be used for its intended purpose.

We are therefore in full support of the Union in balloting its members, and its members’ decision.


Chairs of Governors"

Under Northumberland County Council plans to reorganise to a 2 tier system, Tweedmouth, Berwick and Glendale Middle Schools will be closed in August 2026.

We will be posting facts about the process on our Facebook page to inform parents of the impact this will have on them and their children.

Your support is vital to us during this very difficult time.

23 February 2024Palestine Meeting

Mick Bowman  - lifelong trade unionist, recently returned from the West Bank, after walking from Calais to Palestine as an act of solidarity and to raise awareness of human rights abuses, injustice and genocide.  

Gave a talk with a question and answer session.

More meetings and activities are planned.

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