On this day, 21 March 1991, the abolition of the poll tax in the UK was announced, following a mass non-payment campaign and widespread rioting. The hated tax, introduced by Margaret Thatcher’s Conservative government, charged the working class the same as the rich as there was a charge for every individual in a household.
Despite the defeat of the working class movement in Britain in the 1980s, people up and down the country self-organised an unprecedented campaign which resulted in over 17 million people refusing to pay, with thousands of people clogging the country’s court system. It was later replaced by the council tax, which charged rates based on house value.
This is a short history of the movement which defeated it:
Pictured: poll tax riot in Trafalgar Square


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