UT Union - You may be strong but we are stronger.
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National Executive Council

In the year previous to Unity’s Biennial Congress nomination papers will be sent to out lodges and area groups at the October and January meetings. Nominees must be a Works Representative.

Lodge Delegates

Each lodge in the rural area shall be entitled to send 1 delegate. Should the membership of that lodge exceed 250 and be less than 1001 a second delegate. Thereafter for each additional 750 members or part thereof, one additional delegate.

General President

In the year previous to Unity’s Biennial Congress nomination papers to be placed in lodges (not area groups) in October and January. This position is open to members of at least 4 years standing.


There will be maximum of ten Lodge delegates elected at the January Lodge meeting prior to the Biennial Congress. No Works Representative will be allowed to stand in the election. If however the lodge is unable to elect ten delegates then Works Representatives will be entitled to stand.

Election of Trustees

This position lasts for 6 years. The next election will be prior to the 2010 Conference. Nomination papers will be placed before the October and January lodge meetings.

Area Group Delegates

Each area group will be allowed a maximum of ten delegates elected at the January area group meeting. If more than ten delegates are nominated then there will be ballot of all the Works Representatives present at the meeting.

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Meet the Officers

Profiles of all our Officers are found below


Geoff Bagnall – General Secretary

I remained an active member of the Union.After a relatively short period of time, I once again became the Union Representative.I was elected to a full-time officer in 1981 and elected to the position of General Secretary in 1996. 


Garry Oakes – Assistant General Secretary

Part of my current duties are the links between the Union & the Labour Party both locally and nationally, overseeing the operation of the Ceramic Resource Centre & the North Staffs Workforce Development Fund.


Harry Hockaday – Benefits Officer

As well as the day to day employment issues, I have responsibility as the Benefits Officer, offering help and assistance to members concerning a range of various benefits. e.g. Statutory Sick & Incapacity.


John Huson – Pensions Officer

I have special responsibility for Pensions and use my knowledge to assist members in understanding the information they receive from their Pension Provider. I am also treasurer of the Unions Welfare Society.

Latest News & Events

Employment Law


Few people will go through their working life without needing to know something
about employment law or hiring an accountant in Philadelphia.  The Trade Union movements desire for a better working environment has seen us campaigning for new rights and highlighting things that
are wrong with old ones. To ensure a healthy campaign we need to hire an

Thanks to coordinated campaigning across Europe we now have:

  • Improved Maternity Rights
  • Paternity Rights
  • Parental and Dependency Leave
  • Rights for Part Timers and Agency Workers
  • Flexible Working
  • It has become illegal to discriminate on age, sex or religion.

These are just an example.  Employment Law is a vast subject that covers all aspects of employment.

The fact that Employment Law exists does not mean that all workplaces are full of
exploitation and abuse, they are not – but even in the best run organizations things
can go wrong.  Naturally, we believe working people are better off if they can call on Unity when things do go wrong.

Taking legal action is very difficult without expert advice of the kind that unions can
provide.  Call Unity for expert advice.

You may find the following links useful:



5 Advantages of Teamwork


There are many advantages of working as a team at a workspace. When you work as a team, you will be able to achieve more and come up with a practical solution.  Teamwork is a brilliant way to generate better ideas. The following are some of the advantages of teamwork:

The outcome is better:

When you have more resources working as a team, you will have more challenges and problems solved in an efficient and timely manner. When you work as a team many people will come up with various solutions and the best solution can be picked or two or more ideas can be combined to come up with the solution. The outcomes are often better when you work in a team.

The workload is divided when it came to teamwork and based on the individual’s skills and strengths the tasks can be allocated to each member. When there are more members, more tasks can be distributed and completed.


In business, you might have to face many challenges and tough times, but when you have a team, every person in that team will be there to support and guide each other through difficult times. When there is guidance and support the team members will remain focused and goal oriented. During difficult and stressful situations an individual can get loaded with many things, and he is at a higher risk of making bad decisions. Thus it is always good to have a team to handle tough and challenging situations.


Two is always better than one when it comes to brainstorming. More solutions and creative ideas are produced when people work in a team. Many members of the team come up with different things, and the best among that can be discussed and processed. During the brainstorming sessions, the workers will be more confident to come up with different ideas.



When a tough or challenging situation is overcome, the team members will be motivated to handle more of such situations, and they will encourage each other. A sense of appreciation and recognition will improve, and the employee’s self-esteem and morale are also improved. There will be job satisfaction, and you will be able to lower the company’s

Successful claims for Protective Awards

Unity is delighted to report that our solicitors have been successful in claiming protective awards for our members who were made redundant from Jesse Shirley, Hudson & Middleton, Denby Pottery and Wedgwoods.

A claim for a protective award is pursued when an employer acts in breach of their duty to consult with employer representatives in good time prior to commencing a collective redundancy exercise.

If a company is in administration the payment has to be made by the Secretary of State’s Insolvency Fund.  Payments from this fund towards protective awards are capped at a maximum of 8 weeks pay, paid at average earnings up to a maximum of £350 gross pay per week.  Benefits received from the state such as Job Seekers Allowance may also have to be deducted.

Fighting for your entitlements is just one of the many reasons why you should be a member of Unity.  Make sure you are a member.

Celebration of Lifelong Learning


On 27 October 2010, Brendan Barber (TUC General Secretary) attended Unity’s Celebration of Lifelong Learning event held at Unity Head Office in Hanley, Stoke on Trent. Employers, Training Providers, Union Learning Representatives, union learn and local politicians were present to hear first hand accounts of the benefits of education.  Learners expressed how education had improved their self-confidence, well-being and security whilst the employers emphasized the value of education to improve the profitability and sustainability. Certificates recognizing their contribution to Lifelong learning were presented to Employers, Training Providers, and Learners.Brendan praised the work of Unity the Union trailblazing ‘Lifelong Learning in the Workplace’, and Geoff Bagnall (Unity General  Secretary) stressed the importance of workplace learning and thanked employers for their ongoing support.

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