RTÉ Radio 1 Remembers the 1913 Lockout

    On 26 August 1913, the trams stopped running in Dublin. The workers who abandoned their vehicles were members of Jim Larkin’s Irish Transport and General Workers Union. They were protesting against a demand from their employer, William Martin Murphy to sign a pledge to leave the union. They faced the choice of giving up union membership or being sacked.

    This marked the beginning of the 1913 Dublin Lockout which would ultimately involve 20,000 workers and 300 employers. One hundred years later, it remains the most famous labour dispute in Irish history.  During the six months of the Lockout, families endured severe poverty, hardship and starvation.

    Throughout 2013, items, interviews and series about the Lockout are being broadcast on RTÉ Radio One’s various programmes.These include The History Show, Liveline, Today with Pat Kenny and Arena as well as The Michael Littleton Memorial Lecture and the documentary series Citizens Lockout. Links to our Lockout coverage are listed below.

    Women and Children of the 1913 Lockout

    Jim Larkin and the 1913 Lock Out

    Soup Kitchens

    Music of The Lock Out

    Lockout Theatre Show

    February Book Club: Strumpet City

    The Michael Littleton Memorial Lecture

    Citizens Lockout 1913 to 2013

    Citizens Lockout 1913 to 2013 discussion

    Throughout the week of 26 August
    RTÉ Radio 1 Remembers the Lockout during the week of 26 August with a selection of short recorded pieces giving a flavour of the time, the tenements, the characters involved in the dispute and how it affected the workers and their families.

    These will be broadcast during ad breaks at 7am, 9am, 11am, 1pm, 3pm, 5pm and 7pm.

    Additional podcasts: we have produced over 100 podcasts to mark the centenary of the Lockout with a mix of family history, verse, song and historical analysis.

    Lockout Podcasts


    Lockout 26 August 7am

    Historian, Donal Fallon on the events that led to the start of the Lockout.


    Lockout 26 August 9am

    Des Geraghty, former President of SIPTU describes his family's experience during the Lockout.


    Lockout 26 August 11am

    Who was William Martin Murphy? by author, Padraig Yeates.


    Lockout 26 August 1pm

    Jim Larkin's philosophy by historian, Niamh Puirseil.


    Lockout 26 August 3pm

    Historian, Ann Matthews on her mother's memories of the Lockout.


    Lockout 26 August 5pm

    Why the Lockout was regarded by nationalist Ireland as a huge inconvenience by historian, Conor Mulvagh.


    Lockout 26 August 7pm

    Why it's called a Lockout by historian, Niamh Puirseil.


    Census Bulletin - No. 3 Handkerchief Alley

    Catriona Crowe from the National Archives illustrates the circumstances enduring by Dublin's poor by reading an entry from the 1911 Census


    Killer Tenements

    Housing conditions in Dublin in were very bad with the slums considered some of the worst in the UK. The 1911 census shows that 26,000 families in Dublin city lived in tenements, 20,000 of them in single rooms.


    Darkest Dublin

    Christiaan Corlette, author of Darkest Dublin takes Colette Kinsella on a virtual tour of Dublin tenement life in 1913.


    The Plight of Workers

    In this extract, Jim Larkin talks about the plight of workers.


    Background to the Lockout

    Historian, Niamh Puirseil describes the circumstances that led to the Lockout


    Why the Lockout Happened in 1913

    Historian, Niamh Puirseil.


    Start of the Lockout

    Author, Padraig Yeates describes the start of the Lockout.


    The Lockout begins

    Oral historian, Mary Muldowney adds her perspective to the start of the Lockout.


    20,000 on Strike

    Historian, Niamh Puirseil on the thousands who would be involved in the Lockout.


    Jim Larkin

    Author, Padraig Yeates gives his view on Jim Larkin.


    Jim Larkin's Background

    Historian, Donal Fallon on the rise of Jim Larkin.


    James Connolly

    Historian, Donal Fallon paints a picture of James Connolly.


    William Martin Murphy

    Historian, Niamh Puirseil on the leader of the employers, William Martin Murphy.


    William Martin Murphy

    Historian, Donal Fallon on this complex man.


    One Big Union

    Larkin's commitment to One Big Union by Des Geraghty.


    Bohemians/Shelbourne Football Match

    The match that sparked trouble on the eve of Bloody Sunday by Donal Fallon.


    It's Murphy's

    1913 poem recited by labour historian, Francy Devine.


    Why It's Called a Lockout

    Historian, Padraig Yeates explains why it's called a Lockout and not a strike.


    Oh Lily Bright

    Song written and performed by Des Geraghty.

    Podcast contributors:
    Padraig Yeates, author of Lockout Dublin 1913 (Gill & McMillan)
    Niamh Puirseil, historian
    Donal Fallon, historian and lecturer
    Catriona Crowe, National Archives of Ireland
    Des Geraghty, former president of SIPTU Conor Mulvagh, historian
    Ann Matthews, historian
    Shane MacThomais, Glasnevin Museum
    Dr. Paul Rouse, lecturer, School of History and Archives, UCD
    Francis Devine, labour historian
    Sam Nolan, corresponding secretary, Dublin Council of Trade Unions
    Mary Muldowney, oral historian

    David Herlihy, actor.
    Aonghus McAnally, RTÉ Radio.
    Gerry McArdle, RTÉ Radio


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