Before 1919 Labour had but a toe-hold in local government around the country. The breakthrough in local elections that year was a key step towards gaining power at national level for the first time five years later. As part of the series of activities commemorating the centenary of the 1921 Poplar Rates Rebellion, this event will reflect on how and why Labour were able to win in 1919 and the challenges they then faced. In Poplar Labour won a landslide and future party leader, George Lansbury, became the first Labour mayor. Appropriately the keynote at this event will be given by his great-granddaughter, Clr Sally Lansbury, reflecting not only why Labour won but how the party’s achievements in local government then helped them to advance nationally, with commentaries on the challenges facing local government then from Janine Booth and Dr Cathy Hunt.