Sunningdale, the Ulster Workers' Council strike and the struggle for democracy in Northern Ireland

David McCann (Editor), Cillian McGrattan (Editor)

Research output: Book/ReportAnthology


The 'Sunningdale experiment' of 1973-4 witnessed the first attempt to establish peace in Northern Ireland through power-sharing. However, its provisions, particularly the cross-border 'Council of Ireland', proved to be a step too far. The experiment floundered amid ongoing paramilitary-led violence, finally collapsing in May 1974 as a result of the Ulster Workers' Council strike.Drawing on new scholarship from some of the top political historians working on the period, this book presents a series of reflections on how key protagonists struggled with notions of power-sharing and the 'Irish dimension', and how those struggles inhibited a deepening of democracy and the ending of violence for so long.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages240
Publication statusPublished - 27 Feb 2017



  • Sunningdale
  • Northern Ireland
  • Power sharing
  • Ulster Workers' Council Strike

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