General Federation of Trade Unions (GFTU) launches new Education Programme at the Durham Miner’s Gala

People marching down the street and carrying the Durham Miners' Association banner at the 2023 Durham Miners' Gala parade.
A photo of the GFTU Executive lined up on a staircase in Durham on the weekend of the 2023 Durham Miners' Gala

It was an honour once more to represent the Social Workers Union at the Durham Miners’ Gala weekend together with union and GFTU Executive colleagues.

Watching the massive scale of the event and listening to speeches, and that sense of joy in the community that comes from the Durham Miners’ Gala is a spectacular occurrence. Indeed, such an event renews your faith in unionism, socialism and solidarity.

The highlight of the weekend was the launch of the GFTU Educational Trust’s new training programme containing a huge amount of new training courses that SWU members can access free of charge. Many of the new courses are online. Some are also residential and held at GFTU owned hotel and training centre, the Quorn Grange Hotel, which is near Loughborough in Leicestershire. Courses run in a variety of formats throughout the year.

About GFTU Educational Trust Courses

We all learn differently and at the GFTU we pride ourselves on providing topical and thought-provoking learning opportunities, which are sometimes beyond the classroom, such as a conference or live performance. Knowledge is powerful and through learning, we develop understanding that stays with us, enabling us to be empowered to make a difference, to make more informed choices and support others to make a difference for themselves, their union, family and communities.

There is something for everyone who is already active or wants to become active in their trade union. Our aim is to inspire, educate and support trade union activists across the UK and beyond. You may be a new union member just finding out about how to get more involved in your union or a seasoned activist, a full-time union officer, or possibly something in between.

When the GFTU was first founded in 1899, the founding mission was built around three pillars — education, solidarity and unity in action. It is these values that inspire the new education programme and in the words of GFTU General Secretary Gawain Little:

 “We hope the courses will make a significant contribution to forging the unity and strength we need to force a change of direction for Britain.”

To access the new courses please see link below:

John McGowan

SWU General Secretary

SWU General Secretary John McGowan holds a copy of the GFTU Educational Trust's new brochure "Education Programme 2023-2024"