Wapping dispute boss retires

By PrintWeek team, Thursday 17 January 2002

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Bill O'Neill, the trade union buster who was responsible for the Sun's controversial move from Fleet Street to Wapping, has retired

Bill O'Neill, the trade union buster who was responsible for the Sun's controversial move from Fleet Street to Wapping, which led to the Wapping dispute of 1985-86, has retired from News Corporation.

O'Neill led the negotiations with trade unions when News International tried to introduce new technology and working practices at the new plant in Wapping. The dispute led to 6,000 trade union members going on strike.

The collapse of the strike in 1987 changed the face of UK trade unionism forever.

O'Neill's career with News Corporation lasted 50 years. He started out as a printing apprentice on the Sydney Daily Mirror in 1952 and finished as head of human resources at News Corporation in New York.

The GPMU declined to comment.

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