About this Archive
Raymond "Ray" Challinor was a distinguished Marxist historian of the British labour movement, particularly in the North East of England. Initially a member of the Independent Labour Party, he was an early member of the Revolutionary Communist Party and then the Socialist Review group and was also a member of the group which succeeded it, the International Socialists. For a period in the 1960s he was a councillor in Newcastle-under-Lyme on the Labour Party ticket in which party IS was then resident, later writing an article in International Socialism on how the experience was politically dispiriting.
Born in Stoke-on-Trent, and a conscientious objector, working on the land, after the Second World War, Challinor was educated at Keele and Lancaster Universities and became principal lecturer in history at Newcastle Polytechnic. While a member of the Socialist Workers Party, he wrote his best known work, a classic history of the Socialist Labour Party, The Origins of British Bolshevism (1977). He served as chairman of the Society for the Study of Labour History and president of the North East Labour History Society.
Scope and Content
Papers of historian Raymond Challinor (1929-2011), including:
- Correspondence, internal memoranda, minutes and papers regarding International Socialists, 1960s - 1970s.
- Press cuttings of reviews, articles and letters to the press by Challinor, 1960-1981.
- Research materials, pamphlets and papers on Tom Mann, early trade unionism, Chartism, labour history in the North East of England, socialism and the Neptune Yard Strike (shipyard lying-on time dispute) on the Tyne, 1806-2000.