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Thomas Burt - Temperance Campaigner & 1st Working Class M.P.

On this day in 1837 - Thomas Burt, acknowledged to be the first working class MP in Britain, was born in the North East of England.

He began his working life as a boy of ten years old – at a colliery - his working day involved a four hour walk to and from work each day and a twelve hour shift underground.

Thomas Burt was a lifelong abstainer coming from a Rechabite home and Temperance was central to his beliefs and life.

In 1865 he was appointed the Secretary of the Northumberland & Durham Miners’ Permanent Relief Fund and in 1874 he was elected to Parliament as MP for Morpeth and devoted himself to the task for the next 40 years.

He was a close associate of Wilfred Lawson and firm believer and campaigner for Local Option. He remained and lifelong champion of the working class and doughty Temperance Campaigner

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