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Glasgow to mark centenary of the battle of George Square

Around 60,000 people took part in a demonstration in 1919 to demand a 40-hour working week.

By STV News

Published 31 Jan 2019.

Glasgow will mark the 100th anniversary of the Battle of George Square on Thursday.

Police and striking workers clashed on January 31, 1919 in a violent confrontation also known as "Black Friday" or "Bloody Friday".

Around 60,000 demonstrators took to the square months after the end of the First World War as the city's industrial community demanded a 40-hour week compared to their 57-hour contracts.

Officials even resorted to reading the Riot Act during the clashes, while the military was also deployed.

After the unsuccessful strike ended in February its leaders were arrested.

The period of political radicalism, known now as Red Clydeside, will be reflected upon at various events on Thursday.

The Open University is hosting a learning session from noon, with speakers on hand to inform students and the public about what happened before, during and after that day.

Speakers include lecturers from the university, Glasgow City Council and union representatives and political activists.

Former Scottish justice secretary Kenny MacAskill will host a book signing after writing about the battle.

The ticketed launch of Glasgow 1919: The Rise of Red Clydeside will be held at Waterstones in Sauchiehall Street at 7pm.