Working Class Movement Library

A blog from the Working Class Movement Library in Salford

Lucy Miller – a woman of many talents

Posted by wcmlibrary on September 4, 2012

We’ve just added to our stock of working class autobiographies a 60-page typescript by a woman called Lucy Miller, a Communist Party and later Labour Party member who was born in Battersea in 1903.  It covers her domestic and working life, which included a spell as a civil servant just after the second world war.  ‘Whilst working in Downing Street the Government decided that no Communist Party member should be employed in the Civil Service.  I was still an active Party member, so decided that instead of waiting to be sacked I would discharge myself.  I therefore told the supervisor that I was a Party member (much to her amazement) and that I would prefer to find other work’.

Lucy was highly musical, playing the piano and writing pieces for piano and orchestra, and taking an interest in the Workers’ Music Association.  Very sadly Lucy chose to entitle her autobiography ‘A wasted talent’, one reason being her ‘feeling that I should never achieve the music I so much wanted to create’.

Her life ended unhappily, but we are honoured that her friend Jean Garriock has given this account of her life to the Library – a place where ‘invisible histories’ of working women and men can be preserved and celebrated.

Lynette Cawthra, Library Manager


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