Doncaster building memorial honour for rail union boss Bob Crow

Rail union chief Bob Crow.
Rail union chief Bob Crow.

A trade union education centre in Doncaster is to be renamed in memory of former rail union leader Bob Crow.

The general secretary of the Rail, Maritime and Transport union died suddenly in March at the age of 52, sparking tributes from across industry and politics.

Now the union has decided to name its education college on Thorne Road in Doncaster after Mr Crow, who was fiercely proud of the work carried out at the centre which he helped open in 2006.

He led the RMT from 2002, during which time membership increased by 20,000 to 80,000.

He was one of Britain’s most high-profile union leaders, fighting for the pay and conditions of workers ranging from London Underground drivers to rail station cleaners.

Mr Crow was known for his firebrand and hardline approach.

London Mayor Boris Johnson was one of the leading political figures who paid tribute to Mr Crow, saying he had ‘fought tirelessly’ for members.

Mick Cash, who has succeeded Mr Crow as RMT general secretary, said: “Bob was wholly committed to the core trade union principles of educate, agitate and organise and under his leadership the RMT was the fastest growing union in the country because he was prepared to walk the talk.

“With Bob Crow as general secretary our education centre in Doncaster grew into a full residential college educating and training up hundreds of our activists and building a strong, member-led union that has proved its resilience despite the shock of Bob’s tragic death earlier this year.

“The union believes it will be a fitting and lasting tribute to rename the Doncaster National Education Centre after Bob Crow and that plan will come to fruition in 2015 with the support of Bob’s family.”

Since Mr Crow’s death, the building has displayed a banner paying tribute to him but renaming the centre is a more last tribute.

The £1.5 million centre is used to train RMT workplace and health and safety representatives as well as branch officials, regional and national officers and staff.

It boasts a classroom suite with full IT facilities, 20 bedrooms, living and dining rooms, a kitchen, garages and a licensed bar.