Overalls to Ermine: Lord Garfield Davies CBE, the “People’s Peer” and former general secretary of Usdaw, publishes his long-awaited memoirs.
EVE Writing Services announces the publication of Overalls to Ermine: the life and times of Lord Garfield Davies of Coity CBE, and invites ladies and gentlemen of the press to join the author for an informal book launch on 19th November.
Lord Davies’ compelling memoirs follow the remarkable journey of a boy from Bridgend, South Wales, who failed his 11-plus and left school aged 15 with no qualifications, yet worked his way up the ranks of trade unionism and into the House of Lords. From humble beginnings in the close-knit community of Coity to the prestige of Parliament, his inspirational story is one of a deep-rooted passion for social change.
Starting his career as a Port Talbot Steelworks pre-apprentice in 1950, Lord Davies joined Usdaw in the 1960s, rising to the role of general secretary in 1986 – a position he filled for more than a decade, at a time of entrenched anti-union hostility from Thatcher’s government. During his career the “People’s Peer” travelled the world, meeting prime ministers, presidents and royalty while campaigning tirelessly for workers’ rights and against social injustice.
Lord Davies, who now lives in Bramhall, Stockport, commented:
“These memoirs, co-written with the editors at EVE Writing Services, follow my journey from Port Talbot to Parliament, demonstrating that no matter where you start from, you can finish anywhere you wish.”
Francesca Newton, director of EVE Writing Services, said:
“Lord Davies is truly a man of the people, defying all preconceptions of grandeur associated with the peerage. It’s been an honour to bring his remarkable story to life in these memoirs.”
Current Usdaw general secretary John Hannett, who has written the foreword to the book, said:
“Garfield Davies was Usdaw’s general secretary during one of the most tumultuous and difficult times experienced by the trade union movement; a time when the Conservatives were ruthlessly attacking trade unions and employment rights. Despite that, he led the union to win notable victories against the Government whilst spearheading the campaign for a National Minimum Wage and the dismantling of apartheid in South Africa. Usdaw continues to go from strength to strength, building on innovations and successes from Garfield’s 12 years as Usdaw general secretary.”