Socialist Worker

Martin Rhodes 1959-2016

by Barnsley SWP
Issue No. 2494

Martin Rhodes, one of Barnsley SWP's newest and most respected members, has died suddenly.

Two weeks ago he chaired our branch meeting with characteristic warmth and good humour. 

Martin Rhodes

Martin Rhodes

Martin was a key activist in the Freedom Ride protests from their beginning in April 2014, protesting against the loss of free train travel for disabled and older people in South Yorkshire. He joined the SWP a few weeks into the campaign.

From the beginning he threw himself into activity, particularly with Palestinian solidarity work and defending the NHS. He rarely missed a meeting and was always one of the first to volunteer for any activity.

Only poor health held him back. Yet despite that poor health, the DWP persistently hounded him to find work. Before Martin got the chronic heart disease which stopped him working, he had a varied employment history, from being an USDAW member working in the nearby motorway services to a pub landlord.

As a proud, gay man Martin was keen to push socialist ideas on how to fight for LGBT liberation. Our first branch meeting since his death pledged to carry on that fight by organising a special screening of his favourite film, "Pride".

Article information

Tue 8 Mar 2016, 17:38 GMT
Issue No. 2494
Share this article

Mobile users! Don't forget to add Socialist Worker to your home screen.