TitleRecords of the Poplar Borough Municipal Alliance
DescriptionRecords of the Poplar Borough Municipal Alliance, 1905-1962

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Extent5 files, 5 volumes abd 1 item
AdminHistoryThe Poplar Borough Municipal Alliance was formed in 1905 following the ratepayers revolt of that year. Claiming to be a non-political and non-sectarian organisation. its object was "to keep before the Burgesses and Electors of the Borough the necessity for, and duty of, each and everyone taking a personal interest in all local matters, particularly those relating to Municipal Control." The formation of the Alliance was a sharp reaction to the phenomenal rise in local taxation. Poplar was a very poor borough and had become a stronghold of the Labour Movement. The Alliance was ambitious and remarkably well-organised with committees in all fourteen wards in the borough. Within a year of its foundation it claimed to represent nearly 40% of the total rateable value of the Borough of Poplar. By 1909 it claimed to have over 2,750 members of which no less than 2,000 were said to be working men. Although claiming to represent the community rather than class or party, the Alliance appealed especially to shopkeepers, market traders and the more substantial commercial interest. Its officials were connected to the borough's principal employers in some shape or form.

Until 1919, the Poplar Borough Municipal Alliance held a majority on the Poplar Borough Council and was a vociferous opponent of the actions of the Poplar Board of Guardians during the development of "Poplarism". In the 1919 borough elections the Alliance lost control to George Lansbury's Labour Party and in spite of amalgamation with the Poplar Ratepayers' Association in 1922 and collaboration with the Conservative and Liberal parties, it was again defeated in the elections of 1922. In the elections of 1925 it decided against fielding candidates and the Alliance went into political decline though it continued to campaign against socialism in Poplar.

After the Second World War the Poplar Borough Municipal Alliance sometimes joined forces with the Stepney Municipal Alliance on matters of joint interest, such as salvage and the Stepney-Poplar Reconstruction Scheme. In 1962 the Alliance merged with the Stepney Chamber of Commerce to form the East London Federation of Industry and Commerce.
CustodHistThe papers were deposited by the East London Federation of Industry and Commerce in 1975
Related MaterialTower Hamlets Local History Library holds a number of the Poplar Borough Municipal Alliance's publications together with a file of cuttings relating to its activities.
Subject(s)Ratepayers' Associations
Poplar (borough)
Access StatusOpen
RequestNO - This does not represent a physical document. Please click on the reference number and view list of records to find material available to order at file or item level.


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