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Slater becomes Sclater, and what's the Link between the Matchgirls Strike and Ornithology?

Updated: Nov 7, 2020

Early in the Matchgirls Strike, at the suggestion of Harry Hobart, a Social Democrat Federation activist, a Strike Register was created to record details of the Matchgirls and the payments made. It shows a K Slater, single and living with parents at 266 St Leonards Road, Bromley St Leonards.

Strike Fund Register (Centre and Top Centre of the Factory) - Courtesy of TUC Library Collections
Strike Fund Register (Centre and Top Centre of the Factory) - Courtesy of TUC Library Collections

Both the Strike, and Union Committees have Kate Slater recorded as a member.

Extract from 'The Link' 21st July 1888 © British Library
Extract from 'The Link' 4th August 1888 © British Library

Before the Strike, Kate is recorded in the 1881 Census as living with her parents William and Ellen, plus five siblings, at 24 Hawthorne Buildings, Bromley St Leonards. This time the surname is Sclater with a ‘c’.


Kate Sclater married George Godby Furnell in 1889 at St Michaels and