20 DECEMBER 1946, Page 15


Sta,—In your note on the Socialists' abuse of power with the closed shop where they have a majority on local councils you say, " The first and best battle-ground is the polling-booth at the municipal elections." May I give particulars of what was done in industrial Oxford at the last November elections? The contests in the three wards comprising industrial Oxford resolved themselves into a fight between Socialists and non-Socialists. Liberals abandoned their intention to contest, and no Independent candidates appeared. Previously the three wards were held by Conservatives, and three by Socialists. The Socialists confidently hoped for six representatives, and a majority on Oxford City Council. The Conservatives won two seats from the Socialists in this industrial area, and the total non-Socialist vote exceeded the Socialist vote by t,00t.

Now is the time to plan for next November elections, and now is the time to be busy mobilising the non-Socialist forces. The political label must not unduly weigh. Conservatives, Liberals, Independents, &c., must not fight one another. The issue is too clamant. The claims of each non-Socialist Parry can be arranged if the main issue is kept in view, and good will enters into the conferring. What was done in industrial Oxford can be done in other industrial areas—be done any- where. If we are to save this country from being a Socialist slave state, there must be a closing of the ranks of non-Socialists. If this thing is done in the less partisan sphere of local government,. it may lead to something similar at a general election.—Yours, &c.,

64 Annesley Road, Rose Hill, Oxford.