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Reddest of the Reds

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SO Davies, MP and miners' leader by Robert Griffiths

STEPHEN OWEN DAVIES was one of the 20th century's great rebels.

From working underground at the age of 12, he rose through the ranks of the South Wales Miners Federation and the Miners Federation of Great Britain. The police and intelligence services tried to disrupt his work with the Red International of Labour Unions and the League Against Imperialism.

As the Labour MP for Merthyr Tydfil and a comrade of Aneurin Bevan, he campaigned inside and outside parliament against the Poor Law and the Means Test, and for the rights of workers, women and the unemployed. During the Great Depression, his efforts helped prevent the abandonment of Merthyr Tydfil as a living, working community.

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