Dispute over flags at Carrick factory

A dispute took place at Imperial Chemical Industries (ICI) factory in Kilroot over the flying of Union Jack flags and bunting in the fitters’ workshop in July 1964.

Eighty fitters walked out in protest when management told them it was against company practice.

After a lengthy discussion, management agreed to the flying of two additional Union Jack flags at the entrance to the factory.

A statement issued by management indicated that no other decorations were allowed in the workshop due to safety regulations. The company opened in Carrick in 1963.

However, an assurance was given by the works manager that the matter would be raised with the fibres division before a future policy was devised.

The 50 fitters and apprentices had a lunch hour meeting when it was decided to go on strike, following the controversial decision by management, in the run-up to the Twelfth. The men turned up for work as usual but no tools were used.

A spokesman for the fitters said that they were “satisfied” with the management’s agreement to allow additional flags to be flown at the entrance.