Peter Frost reveals where those ANC leaflets were printed

This article by journalist Peter Frost reveals where some, at least, of the leaflets that we London Recruits smuggled into apartheid South Africa were printed.

Send us printer’s ink.

Peter Frost takes a walk back into communist history and gets some ink on his fingers.

“Send us printer’s ink, we do not know how to get it” wrote Lenin in 1901.

Lenin always understood that however wise and politically important the message you needed printers to get it over to the people who mattered – the working class.

It’s not a very inspiring place, the scruffy trading estate behind Watford Junction Railway Station. When it was built, however, it must have had very high expectations. The developers picked some grand names to reflect Britain’s Royal heritage and their pride in Empire.

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Mary Chamberlain - update

Mary Chamberlain @ Carey HarrisonWhen the Editor first came into contact with Mary Chamberlain (via Ronnie Kasrils) in 2010, the book was regarded as finished and he was looking for a publisher. In haste, Mary wrote a short account of what she had done as a London Recruit and space was found for it in the book. However, since publication she has written this much fuller (and funnier) account that includes her more general comments as well. The article was first published in History Workshop Journal 74, Spring 2013 and we are grateful for their permission to re-publish it here.

The ANC’s London Recruits: a Personal Story

by Mary Chamberlain

Oxford Brookes This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Let me start with the context. By 1966, the apartheid regime in South Africa had all but annihilated the African National Congress (ANC). They had wrecked its presses and rendered its organization inoperable Its leaders had been executed or imprisoned, or were in exile. Some leaders, along with some supporters, had fled to Tanzania or Zambia. But a great many of them, including Joe Slovo, Yusuf Dadoo and Ronnie Kasrils, ended up in London, the metropolitan heart of the rapidly disintegrating Empire. They set up shop in Fitzrovia as the ANC in exile, in alliance with the South African Communist Party (SACP), not far from the offices of the Anti-Apartheid Movement in Charlotte Street.

Read more: Mary Chamberlain - update

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