5 MAR 1937
Princes Risborough 151
37 Belsize Park Gardens
4th March 1937.
Dear Sir Walter,
I am much obliged to you for your letter of March 1st, your reference WMC/KMS/333. It is good to know that we may count on your sympathy for the International Brigade. I can well believe that there are formidable difficulties in the way of any regular contribution, either from the T.U.C., or from individual Unions, to maintain the dependants of the Brigade. I am glad to know that you are looking for ways to get round these obstacles.
I am much distressed that an unintentional slip of mine may have aggravated these difficulties. Certainly it is the case that an appeal has gone out to all sorts of Labour Organisations, including Trade Unions. Indeed, it began to go out immediately after my talk with you.
These are the facts as I recollect them. I foresaw that you might very well object to a dual appeal. I, therefore, agreed with the Communist Party that no appeals should be sent out by our Committee to Trade Unions if you felt that this would be objectionable. Accordingly, at our talk I told you that our appeal was about to be circulated, and asked if you had any objection to its going to Trade Unions. Rather to my surprise, you said no, or so I understood you. I therefore told our Committee to go ahead with the appeal.
I realise, from your letter, that I must have failed in my talk with you to make this matter clear. Certainly I did not stress it or dwell upon it, but merely mentioned it casually between other more important subjects. I wish I had underlined it a bit more heavily. I trust, however, that this detail will not prove a serious obstacle. It is, of course the prestige of the T.U.C. that we want behind any appeal, no less than the actual money.