chapter  3
15 Pages

The British Labour Party, social justice and the politics of leisure 1945–2015

ByPeter Bramham, Stephen Wagg

This chapter focuses historically at the leisure policies and practices of the British Labour Party. It explores what has been the party's uneasy and ambivalent relationship with the concept of social justice over the seventy-year period between 1945 and 2015. The biblical measure of a lifetime, three-score years and ten, is conveniently and entirely appropriate because to think about time and space from a generational perspective is one important building block or foundation stone for historical sociology. Leisure and leisure policies have long been recognised as sites for individuals, communities and institutions to exercise regulation and control as well as for the celebration of freedoms and resistance to oppression. The phrase 'the leisure project' can be usefully deployed to capture the politics of leisure, leisure policy and leisure research. In our political history, leisure policy sits comfortably within, and more importantly centres on, a social democratic tradition in politics.