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Lancaster LNU District: Carnforth Branch

Promoting the League of Nations in Carnforth and the surrounding villages
War Memorial, Market Street, Carnforth © Janet Nelson

War Memorial, Market Street, Carnforth
© Janet Nelson

The Carnforth Branch of the League of Nations Union (LNU), in the Lancaster LNU District Council , was formed sometime before November 1924, although a meeting to promote the League of Nations ] had been held in April 1921, when all the nonconformist churches met together. In January 1924 the Highmaster of Manchester Grammar School talked about the League to a meeting organised by the Co-operative Education Committee. The Carnforth branch was organised on the usual LNU lines, with an Executive Committee who elected a Chairman, one Vice-Chairman, a Secretary and a Treasurer. Members came from the town itself, a small industrial centre, and the surrounding villages. By 1926, membership had reached 230, although it was down to 190 in 1935. Active members included local councillors and clergy, including nonconformists, Anglicans and Catholics. At the beginning, three trade unions were represented: the Locomotive Engineers’ Society, the National Union of Railwaymen and the Postal Workers’ Union, as well as two women’s organisations. Meetings were held in the Council Offices and other places in Carnforth, as well as in the local villages such as the Memorial Hall, Borwick.

Activities included lectures and discussions. In 1926 a public meeting attracted 500 people and the Secretary considered that ‘they had made good progress in… educating public opinion.’ At the 1926 AGM a discussion on the League’s Geneva Conference took place without an outside speaker. The branch was involved in the Peace Ballot  in 1934/5, and it was reported that 1,100 papers had been returned in Carnforth alone.

References/Further Reading:

Lancaster Guardian, 22 Nov24, 2 Apr 21, 26 Jan 1924, 20 Mar 1924, 29 Mar 1935 & 2 Nov 1934.

H. McCarthy, 2011. The British People and the League of Nations. Manchester: Manchester University Press.