back to article New 'Tolpuddle Martyrs' demand £50 a day

The immediate future of 11 striking Dorchester tour guides seems to hold just two possibilities: either West Dorset District Council ups their pay to £50 a day, or they'll be on the next prison ship to Oz. The professional "Blue Badge" guides are currently paid a starvation £26.65* a day to show tourists around the Old Crown …


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  1. Mike Cardwell
    Thumb Down

    "Unite's press release doesn't note how many hours the guides put in"

    A pretty vital piece of missing information. You're journalists aren't you? Do some journalism and find out...

  2. Richard IV

    Looks like it's 4 hours/day

    At least that's when said building is open according to

  3. sandman


    Nothing much has changed in West Dorset - period.

  4. Anonymous Coward

    Plus ça change,

    Plus c'est la fucking même chose.

    I sometimes wonder if the Large Hadron Collider is actually sending us back in time.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Now you mention it

    How can I get transported to Oz? They'll be waiting a long time for a prison ship to take them

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Ah yes, the same lot who wrote off the UK economy in the 20th century and now about to try their best to finish the job in the 21st.

    If they dont like their salary they can go and get another job. Simples.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      simples you say ...

      is "simples" the new shorthand for "please disregard everything appearing above this word as utter drivel".

      Not picking on the author of this particular comment. Though he does demonstrate this rule pretty effectively.

  7. Neil Milner-Harris

    a quick google reveals

    Apparently they do three tours which is a half day, so presumably 3.5 or 4 hours.

  8. James 139


    according to this article

    "The Blue Badge guides are meant to lead two 45-minute tours of the Old Crown Court a day."

    So, 1hour 30mins of work a day, and only offered between mid-July and mid-September.

    Also "Last year the guides were paid £26.65 plus travelling expenses.", given that theyre probably all retired people doing it because they enjoy it, I dont see what theyre complaining about.

    1. Anonymous Coward

      according to the article you're quoting from

      "the industry recommended rate is £75 [per day]"

      so I expect £50 per day is cheap

      1. James 139


        it doesnt say what this £75 is supposed to cover.

        If its for a tour guide operating over a large or complicated site, then its understandable.

        If its just some old duffers wandering round an old court, trying not to die or steal too much oxygen, £75 sounds rather a lot.

      2. Anonymous Coward

        Yes, but...

        ...they're not working for a day, just a part of it.

        Compared to normal office hours (about 7.5 is usual) 26 quid sounds about right as a proportion of 50.

        1. Gene Poole


          Bloody hell, what office do you work at? Any vacancies?

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    not all it seems...........

    The Blue Badge guides are meant to lead two 45-minute tours of the Old Crown Court a day.

    Understandably, the locals aren't overly impressed with their claims.

  10. Miek


    Is that before or after tax ?

  11. CT

    Might only be 2 hours a day, as...

    ... "The court and cells are open from 2 August – 31 August with tours at 2pm and 3pm, Monday to Friday (excluding bank holidays)." (

    There, I'll do some "research" for you. Took all of 2 minutes. Can I have a pay rise?

    1. mamsey


      It's a well known fact that tourists take weekends and bank holidyas off!

  12. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge

    Problem, officer?

  13. Marcus Aurelius

    2 hours a day?

    Sounds like you could still claim benefits and do this job.

  14. Anonymous Coward


    Don't these people realise that they're living in Britain?

    Standing up for yourself is restricted to the rich, who threaten to bugger off to sunnier climes at the first hint of being asked to pay their way.

    For the rest of you wage slaves, roll over and take it , unless you want to end up like those tube drivers who are forced to associate with the likes of Bob Crow in order to earn the best part of £40K a year and 44 days paid leave.

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    1.5 Hours a day?

    If I was retired and lived in Dorset I'd do that for the £17.67 / hour this works out at.

    Assuming they hang about for a full 2 hours it's still £13 an hour which is far from the true "starvation wage" that is the minimum wage. They also get travelling expenses which I can only dream of.

    The issue here seems not their pay rate, but the amount of actual work available.

  16. SMFSubtlety
    Gates Horns

    devilish pay

    £26.65 per day

    4 hrs (as some have mentioned this is how long the place is open for per day)

    26.65 / 4 = £6.66 ph

    I think we have stumbled onto something here!!!

    1. Trevor 3

      what title? I'm replying to a thread!

      The devil is in the detail it seems...

      (although some Italian blokes have recalculated and it's now 616)

      1. LuMan


        How do you calculate the Number Of The Beast? I thought it was originally a typo. Still, if there's a formula for it I think it should be posted somewhere. Failing that, Apple have probably got an app for it....

  17. Anonymous Coward

    Sure, come on down!

    I think you'll find that nothing has changed down here in the past 176 years...

    ...the government still has Victorian attitudes

    ...the country is still run by criminals or ex-criminals

    ...our biggest industry is still 'digging stuff up'

    ...we're a bass ackward country rapidly going nowhere

    ...we're still a horrible place to live, with an evil climate

    ...we still have the same rail network, both tracks and extent

    ...the roads have actually got a bit worse as we've got semis on them as well now

    ...our best export beer is still only slightly better than horse piss

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    The UK minimum hourly wage of 5:80 translates to AUD $10.14 as i write this. The Australian minimum hourly wage is AUD $15 - - so they could be better off, if they can find a job.

  19. owenb


    We have enough convicts from Great Britan. If they want to join us in paradise let them pay their own way.

    1. Anonymous Coward

      I thought...

      the actual 'crime' of the Tolpuddle Martyrs was to require an oath of allegiance to the Union, which was illegal, but it was too good an opportunity for the powers that were to pass up, and the nascent Labour movement to let us forget.

  20. Graham Bartlett

    Wrong Oz

    Send them off somewhere to be ruled by witches, dwarfs, flying assmonkeys and an annoying dog that would be better stuffed and turned into a bogbrush.

    Hmm, actually I think I used to work somewhere like that...

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