London Socialist Historians Group
Contact Keith Flett 07803 167266
Corbyn set to rival Keir Hardie as hirsute Labour leader
The London Socialist Historians Group, which organises the socialist history seminar at the Institute of Historical Research in central London, has said that with Jeremy Corbyn’s re-election as Labour leader on 24th September he looks set to be overtake the record previously held by Keir Hardie as the longest tenure of a Labour leader with a beard.
Keir Hardie was Labour leader from 17th January 1906 to 22nd January 1908. He was the only Labour leader with a full beard until Corbyn was elected on 12th September 2015.
The historians say that while there are some links between Corbyn and Hardie in terms of political belief and style the key connection is that neither man is a career politician in a suit but an activist who has come from the labour movement grassroots.
London Socialist Historians convenor Keith Flett said, historically Jeremy Corbyn is an unusual Labour leader but then so was Keir Hardie. Hardie’s appearance and dress sense was often remarked on much as Corbyn’s is. History suggests that it often takes politicians outside of the accepted mainstream of the day to grapple with changing political times.