Political activist loses final battle
POLITICAL activist Dai Davies died on May 4, aged 74, after dedicating his life to politics and education, writes Vicky Beckett. Mr Davies, a father of three, was a strong member of the Brent Labour Party, teacher and union activist, contributing to soci
POLITICAL activist Dai Davies died on May 4, aged 74, after dedicating his life to politics and education, writes Vicky Beckett.
Mr Davies, a father of three, was a strong member of the Brent Labour Party, teacher and union activist, contributing to society, politics and education for decades.
He was born in 1934, the son of a Welsh miner but came to London in the 1950's where his political career kicked off as he joined the communist party.
He went on to be a key activist in the labour party in the 1960s and worked full-time for the North London Regional Office NUT from the 1970's.
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Brent councillor and close friend, Jim Moher, said: "He was an outstanding example of the best that the tempestuous Brent educational and political scene has produced over the last five decades."
He was a leading figure in the Brent Teachers' Association and negotiated terms and conditions for teachers and teacher pupil ratios.
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He taught in Wembley High School and other Brent schools before becoming head of Oakington Manor, Tokyngton, and then a school governor at Byron Court.
He was one of the activists who helped the party back in the 1980s, standing for the council in 'unwinnable' wards on retirement from the union, which he narrowly lost.
True to his Welsh background Mr Davis was a keen rugby player, he also loved cricket, and, of course, Wales.
Cllr Moher added: "He was a great guy, he was very straight forward, idealistic man. A very good comrade, good colleague, very intelligent, very wise and very shrewd."
Dai married Australian Monica in the 1950s but was refused entry to Australia due to his Communist party membership.
Together they lived in Brent fighting for socialism and teachers' rights.
In the Cold War Communist members were banned from being head teachers, which only enthused Dai to campaign further.
Dai and his wife retired to Wales in 1996 and enjoyed some happy years until Monica died in 2002.
A few years ago, he contracted Alzheimer's Disease and went into a home in Somerset, where he died.