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Conspiracy, and Protection of Property Act 1875

The Conspiracy and Protection of Property Act 1875 (38 & 39 Vict. c.86) is an Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom relating to labour relations, which together with the Employers and Workmen Act 1875, fully decriminalised the work of trade unions. Based on an extension of the conclusions of the Cockburn Commission, it was introduced by a Conservative government under Benjamin Disraeli.[1]

The Act held that a trade union could not be prosecuted for act which would be legal if conducted by an individual.[2] This meant that labour disputes were civil matters, not for consideration by criminal courts.[1] One result of this was that picketing was decriminalised.[3] The law also made certain forms of stalking illegal.[4]

Sections 6 and 7 of this Act were repealed for the Republic of Ireland by the Non-Fatal Offences Against the Person Act, section 31 and Schedule.

The Act has been repealed by the Statute Law (Repeals) Act 2008 (c.12), Schedule 1, Part 3.

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b Review of Governments, Labour, and the law in mid-Victorian Britain: the trade union legislation of the 1870s Archived 2006-05-16 at the Wayback Machine, Mark Curthoys
  2. ^ Conspiracy & Protection of Property Act Archived 14 June 2006 at the Wayback Machine, Spartacus Education
  3. ^ Timeline:1850-1880, TUC history online, Professor Mary Davis, Centre for Trade Union Studies, London Metropolitan University
  4. ^ Excerpt from the Conspiracy, and Protection of Property Act, 1875 Archived 2006-04-01 at the Wayback Machine, Unfair Discrimination in the Scottish State Education System