Tony Southall  (1943 – 2002)

Trotskyist and CND activist

Tony Southall was born in 1943 and from the age of 16 he played a key role in the early days of the campaign against nuclear weapons in Britain. He joined the Young Socialists, and co-founded Croydon Youth Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND) after the Aldermaston marches. He then became Chairman of Cambridge University CND, and was Acting Secretary of Bertrand Russell's highly active Committee of 100 in 1961 and 1962; he was involved in events that led to a huge mushrooming of the anti-nuclear movement in Britain.

As a Cambridge student in 1962, Tony got involved with a fledgling Trotskyist group which would emerge as the International Marxist Group, British section of the Fourth International.

In 1963 Tony became a lecturer at Glasgow University. While there, he was closely involved in the Vietnam solidarity and anti-war campaign. He was also a core figure in the Glasgow labour movement throughout that decade.

In the early 1970s Tony went to teach in Africa, continuing to work on the Africa Commission of the Fourth International, contributing to the struggle against colonialism and apartheid.

On his return to Glasgow in 1983 Tony founded Scottish Labour CND. Over two decades he organised lobbying on nuclear disarmament within the labour movement, retaining an anti-nuclear stance at successive Scottish Labour Party Conferences, at odds with the Party in England.

Despite a diagnosis of multiple sclerosis Tony continued to campaign, as well as lecturing at Glasgow College of Building and Printing until 1993.

In 1993 he became Joint Secretary of Scottish CND and, in a wheelchair, one-handed but mentally undiminished, Tony successfully guided the organisation's campaigning during his final decade, reviving the group's support in Scotland.

In his final few years Tony left the Labour Party for the Scottish Socialist Party, and despite his health's deterioration at the end of 2001 he attended a December protest against US action in Afghanistan and a Glasgow peace conference a month later. He passed away in Glasgow, aged 59, in May 2002.