Unite becomes lead sponsor of Merthyr Rising

Unite is the lead sponsor of the 2019 Merthyr Rising Festival – the annual music and political event taking place in Penderyn Square, Merthyr Tydfil on May 24-26.

The festival commemorates the uprising of 1831 where cruelly exploited workers stood up against the exploitation of the local iron masters. The Merthyr Uprising is a key event in the history of the trade union and labour movement which gave birth to the red flag, later adopted as the international symbol of socialism.

Merthyr Rising is a music, arts and ideas festival that celebrates working class culture and attracts audiences nationally with speakers and performers coming from around the world. This year’s headline acts include Black Grape, Cast and The Sugar Hill Gang And The Furious Five.

Unite Wales regional secretary Peter Hughes said: “Unite is very proud to be supporting the Merthyr Rising Festival. Merthyr has a very important place in the history of socialism in Wales and across the world. The festival is an opportunity for us to remember that the seeds of socialism were sown right on our doorstep, in the great radical town of Merthyr.

“The people of Merthyr deserve this fantastic festival. It is an opportunity to promote the town to a wider audience and to bring in significant income to the local economy. Unite is happy to support the festival to ensure that it continues to be the growing and successful annual festival that it has become.”

Stephen Williams, from the Merthyr Rising organising team, said: “The festival is proud to have Unite the union as its lead sponsor this year. Our continuing relationship is in the spirit of 1831: continuing the struggle for workers’ rights, and increasing public awareness of the vital work of leading unions like Unite, who fight for the interests and rights of workers.”

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