Socialist Labour Party (UK)

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Not to be confused with Socialist Labour Party (UK, 1903).
Socialist Labour Party
Leader Arthur Scargill
President Andrew Jordan
Vice-President James McDaid
General Secretary Kim Singleton
Treasurer Ken Capstick
Founded 1996 (1996)
Split from Labour Party
Headquarters PO Box 193, Liverpool. L38 0WX.
Ideology Socialist democracy
Political position Left-wing
Colours Red
Politics of the United Kingdom
Political parties

The Socialist Labour Party (SLP) is a socialist political party in the United Kingdom. The party was established in 1996 and is led by former trade union leader Arthur Scargill. The party's name highlights its commitment to socialism and acknowledges Clause IV of the Labour Party's former constitution, as fundamental to the party's identity.

The SLP advocates economic localism and is in favour of reopening the mines.[1]

According to accounts filed for the year of 2010 with the Electoral Commission, the Socialist Labour Party had 3,260 members excluding affiliates. It had an income of around £14,200 and an expenditure of about £10,000.[2] In February 2014, The Guardian newspaper reported that the SLP had only 300 members, which it attributed to Scargill's withdrawal from public life.[3]



Arthur Scargill formed the Socialist Labour Party in 1996 as a reaction to Tony Blair's rewrite of Clause IV in the Labour Party's constitution a year earlier, seen as a final rejection of a commitment to socialism. The SLP advocates the public ownership of leading industries - which had been privatised under Conservative Party prime minister Margaret Thatcher during the 1980s, with the policy being maintained by her successor John Major and then advocated by Labour Party leader Tony Blair in his re-write of Clause IV.

The party attracted trade union figures such as Mick Rix and Bob Crow.[citation needed]

In early 2014, the SLP gained three Labour councillors in Barking and Dagenham through defection.[4] However, these members lost their seats in the 2014 UK local elections to the Labour Party. [5]

CPGB-ML split[edit]

The Communist Party of Great Britain (Marxist-Leninist) emerged in July 2004 as an effective split from the Socialist Labour Party, allegedly caused by Scargill's discomfort with orthodox Marxist-Leninist lines, including support of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea to defend itself against US aggression by any means necessary. Scargill chose to expel the majority of the party's central committee and its entire Yorkshire region,[6][7] which then went on to form the basis of the CPGB-ML.[8]

Electoral performance[edit]

At the 2001 general election, the party took about 3% of the vote in seats where it stood candidates.

The party received its highest share of the vote in an individual constituency at the 2005 general election, when it gained 14.2% of the votes cast in Glasgow North East.

The Socialist Labour Party did not contest the 2004 European Parliament election, but fielded a full list of candidates for England, Scotland and Wales in the 2009 European Parliament election, where it took 173,115 votes, or 1.1% of the national vote.[9]

United Kingdom general election, 2010[edit]

The Socialist Labour Party ran 23 candidates in the 2010 general election, who received a total of 7,196 votes, fewer than 0.1% of the UK national vote. All lost their deposits. The best results were those of Kai Andersen in Liverpool West Derby (614 votes - 1.7%) and Ken Capstick in Barnsley East (601 votes - 1.6%). In the local elections held on the same day, Andersen also received 244 votes (4.2%) in the Croxteth ward of Liverpool and in 2012 received 410 votes (14.76%) coming second in the same ward. [10]

Scottish Parliament general election, 2011[edit]

The Socialist Labour Party contested all electoral regions of the Scottish Parliament in 2011, increasing its share of the vote from 0.7% in 2007 to 0.9%. Most other political parties saw a decrease in their vote share due to the landslide victory by the Scottish National Party (SNP). The SLP beat all other left-wing opposition for the first time, as well as parties like the British National Party (BNP).

National Assembly for Wales election, 2011[edit]

The Socialist Labour Party increased its share of the vote from 1.2% in 2007 to 2.4%, giving the SLP the second biggest percentage gain of the total votes cast in the election. It outperformed all other left-wing opposition as well as the BNP. The SLP also received more votes than the Green Party in two of the five regions of Wales.[11]


  1. ^ Martin Shipton (2010-03-25). "Reopen Welsh mines, says Scargill". Wales Online. Retrieved 2013-05-13. 
  2. ^ [1][dead link]
  3. ^ Harris, John (28 February 2014). "In search of Arthur Scargill: 30 years after the miners' strike". The Guardian (London). Retrieved 27 December 2014. 
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^ "Formation of the CPGB-ML" Proletarian Issue 1 (August 2004)
  7. ^ "An exposure of the shameful, unconstitutional and anti-communist behaviour of Arthur Scargill and his flunkeys" Article 16 Proletarian issue 1 (August 2004)
  8. ^ "CPGB-ML founding conference" Article 18 Proletarian issue 1 (August 2004)
  9. ^ "European Election 2009: UK Results". BBC News. 2009-04-19. Retrieved 2010-01-04. 
  10. ^ "General Election and Local Elect". 2010-08-17. Retrieved 2013-05-13. 
  11. ^ "Elections". Socialist Labour Party. 2011-05-05. Retrieved 2013-05-13. 

External links[edit]