Edinburgh Report to RIC National Forum in Glasgow, August 19th

1. General
We have 115 card carrying members. We have monthly Assemblies and Organising Committee meetings.
2. Since the last National Forum in Dundee on 21.6.17
a) RIC- Edinburgh Assemblies
i. Tuesday, 20th June, 19.00 The General Election, Corbyn and Independence
Speakers – Pete Cannell (RISE), George Kerevan (former SNP MP), Hillary Horrocks (ETUC), Lynn McCabe (Community Education Worker and Women from the North Edinburgh Stop Evictions campaign), Peter McColl (Scottish Greens) Holly Rigby (London Momentum), Rory Scothorne (Roch Winds Collective, Scottish Labour Young Socialists), Jonathon Shafi (RIC)
Facilitator– Eileen Cook (RIC-Edinburgh and Scottish CND)
90 people attended this meeting, For report see:-
ii) Wednesday, 26th July, 19.00 RIC-Edinburgh Assembly, Let’s Talk About Hate,
This was jointly organised with the Muslim Women’s Association of Edinburgh (MWAE).
SpeakerSmina Akhtar researcher at the University of Bath spoke about the government’s Prevent strategy.
FacilitatorZareen Taj (MWAE)
25 people attended. For report see:-
b) RIC-Edinburgh Organising Meetings
i) Monday, 26th June
3 people attended
ii) Tuesday, 31st July
4 people attended
iii) Next OM is on Monday, 4th September
c) Future RIC-E Assemblies
i) Wednesday, 13th September – The Catalan Independence Referendum
Speaker – Luke Stobart
ii) Wednesday, 27th September – co-hosted with Haymarket Books
This event will be on the general theme of the constitutional and political instability of the UK and the future of progressive politics across the various nations in the context of Brexit and social-democratic resurgence of Corbynism.
Belfast author, Sean Mitchell, who has recently published Struggle or Starve: Class Unity in Belfast’s 1932 Outdoor Relief Riot
Sean will speak about contemporary politics in Northern Ireland in a way which touches on the events and themes he explores in his book: cross-sectarian working class unity vs state strategies of divide and rule.
Joining Sean will be author and activist, Neil Davidson whose publications include the Deutscher Prize winning, Discovering the Scottish Revolution, The Origins of Scottish Nationhood and HowRevolutionary Were the Bourgeois Revolutions?
d) Activities RIC-Edinburgh has been involved in since last National Forum
i) Saturday, 17th June, 16.00, Edinburgh Rally in support of Women’s March and Rally to Ban the Bomb, (being held in New York), The Mound.
RIC banner was there. A good turn-out.
ii) Sunday, 25th June, 13.00 – Anti-SDL protest in Market Street, 13.00
Individuals from RIC-E were there. Although SDL outnumbered, the turnout was smaller than earlier demos. Large police presence.
iii) Thursday, 29th June, 9.30, Demonstration at City Chambers in support of 11 evicted families.
See full report at:-
iv) Wednesday, August 16th Contesting the Spirit of Unity Whose culture? Whose Festival?
Edinburgh trade union council and local unions created and sponsored this event at this year’s EIF. Glasgow Unity Theatre, a working-class based group, were told they weren’t good enough to take part in the first Edinburgh Festival in 1947. They came anyway – raising their own funds through some unlikely sources – and, together with other theatre groups, performed on what later became known as ‘The Fringe’. Their story, with readings, is followed by a panel discussion with Larry Flanagan (EIS) and Joyce Macmillan (NUJ), chaired by Festival director Fergus Linehan, on the ‘culture wars’ aspect of Edinburgh’s Festival – still a source of passionate debate.
e) Other Future activities for RIC Edinburgh
i) August 24- On the Trail of Thomas Muir (3rd annual Thomas Muir lecture)
The Thomas Muir Memorial Lecture will take place on Thursday 24 August 2017 (7pm for 7.30pm) at St Mary’s Cathedral, Palmerston Place.
The lecture is given by Tommy Sheppard MP. Murray Armstrong , author of The Liberty Tree will also be present.
Allan Armstrong, 18.8.17