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The Early Years


In 1983, the TUC staged a National TUC Peoples March for Jobs. One leg of the march started from Great Yarmouth with marchers from the East Anglain Centres present. After the march, it was suggested that a centre in Great Yarmouth be established. When Labour took over running of the Borough, Ivor Jordan, East Anglia TUC Secretary, and Mike Ward, Regional Organiser for TUC Centres were invited to address the Council. Approval was then granted to provide premises and annual funding.


A Management Committee was formed, comprising of delegates from both the Borough Council and the Trade Union. Part of the Nelson Drill Hall was selected as the place to set up a drop in facility for the unemployed. While renovation work was undertaken, a temporary office was established and Brian Newman was appointed as co-ordinator.


The Centre was officially opened by Mr. Bill Morris of the TGWU on 21st January 1991. Shortly after that, Brian retired due to health problems. Mike Ward was appointed Co-ordinator. Due to the high unemployment rate in the region and in Great Yarmouth itself, the centre was actively campaigning on this issue. It was involved in running courses to empower individuals through Benefit Rights and participation by unemployed individuals in seminars, rallies and marches. In 1993, East Anglia TUC hosted the national march to protest against the Workfare programme of the Tory government.


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