#4 Political Archives at the University

The University of Stirling is home to the Scottish Political Archive.  This archive collects  political material and archives from Scottish politicians and political organisations to chronicle the political history of Scotland in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. In its collections the Archive holds a full run of Radical Scotland magazines.
Radical Scotland Poll Tax Issue
This 1989 cover issue of Radical Scotland refers to the poll tax.  The Community Charge or‘Poll Tax’ as it was known was introduced by Margaret Thatcher’s Conservative government tor eplace the rating system of taxes which based taxes on the rental value of a property. It was introduced first in Scotland in 1989 and later in England and Wales in 1990. The ‘Poll Tax’ had a flat rate charge which had to be paid by every adult of 18 years or older. The tax was hugely unpopular as it was seen as shifting expenses on to the poor and easing the burden on the rich. It proved so unpopular and had such a negative reaction from the public that Poll Tax was abolished by 1992 and was replaced by Council Tax in the tax year 1993/94.
Radical Scotland was a political magazine that emerged from the ’79 Group and had a short lived incarnation in the early 1980s.  It was formally relaunched in 1983 and then consistently ran bi-monthly issues. Over its life the magazine had two editors Kevin Dunion and then Alan Lawson.  It featured regular contributions from political parties, independent authors and commentators.  The magazine numbered 51 issues before it was wound up in 1991.  

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