Thursday, October 15, 2020

Socialist & Labour West Ham Cllr George Coe "He tried to leave the world a little better than he found it"


During the summer I had a wonderful email from Plaistow resident and local historian, Alan Regin, connected to a post I wrote on this blog following the general election in 2015

On election day 2015 an UNISON colleague of mine was acting as a Labour polling agent outside an Ilford polling station and had been given a copy of an early West Ham "Labour" election pamphlet from 1897, which they sent to me knowing I was a local Councillor. 

This leaflet mentioned the "Social Democratic and Trade Unionist" candidate "G.Coe" who I googled and checked what records I had to hand but was unable to find any further information about. 

Alan had seen this post and he sent me a photograph of  a "George Coe" headstone in the West Ham Cemetery. It seems that George had indeed been elected in 1897 and remained a Councillor until 1900. 

He died at the young age of 40 in 1910. 

What is particularly noticeable about his gravestone is the wonderful epitaph "this testimonial was erected by a few friends as a token of their respect for his devotion both to his public & private duties". He tried to leave the world a little better than he found it".

I hope to go and pay my respects to George with Alan and modern day Councillor colleagues in the near future. 


Zodiacstar said...

GEORGE COE, Hi I was talking about George to a friend, telling her that he died in 1910, he was my husband's great grandfather and my sons great great grandfather, I know they had newspaper clippings or the elections where George was mentioned, also a award was given to my husband's grandfather also called George by I think Barbara Castle at a labour party conference as being the longest serving member of the labour party joining before the name changed to the labour party.

Zodiacstar said...

George Coe labour councillor.
Hi I was just talking to a friend about my husband's great grandfather being a labour councillor prior to 1910, and know that my ex husband or my sons have newspaper clippings of George's election win, and other clippings. Also my ex husband's grandfather also called George got awarded a trophy by I think Barbara Castle for being the longest serving member of the labour joining before it was renamed to the labour party. He died in 1985 at the age of 96 years.

Zodiacstar said...

Please email me I have more information

Zodiacstar said...

My name is Georgina Coe I have information about George that you may be interested in.

John Gray said...

Hi Georgina. I have responded to your email from my Newham Councillor account. It would be great to get further information on the life of George.