The Bracegirdle Incident is the true story of how an Australian communist labour agitator almost brought down the British colonial government in Ceylon in 1936. Unknown in Australia, the case of Mark Anthony Lyster Bracegirdle became a cause celebre in Ceylon’s independence struggle, and his name remains revered among the Left in Sri Lanka today. The son of an artistic English blue stocking, Bracegirdle arrived in Australia in 1927. Read More
As the working people of Sri Lanka prepare to celebrate another May Day to defend our hard-won freedom, it behoves us to go back 74 years, to May Day 1937 which was a crucial one in the struggle of Sri Lanka for independence from the British Empire. Read More
In 1936, Mark Bracegirdle, who has died of a stroke aged 86, arrived in Ceylon from Australia, and for seven months worked on the Relugas estate, Madulkelle, as an apprentice tea planter. The workforce was Indian Tamil; their hours were long, their wages low, their living conditions shocking - and they were illiterate. Read More
The sylvan surroundings, bracing climate and majestic mesmerizing landscapes of the tea estates in the plantation districts of Sri Lanka are an inspiration to the poet, artist, and philosopher. But beneath this facade of nature at her very best, lie tales of dark secrets and murder most foul, four of which I shall set down in this article. The first, and perhaps best known was “The Whitehouse Murder” which took place in 1949. Read More
For decades, in pre and post-Independence Sri Lanka, tea and rubber have been the country’s main foreign exchange earners. Unlike other industries, more than 85 percent of the raw materials for tea and rubber production are made locally, which means comparatively low costs to the State. Read More
Nuwara Eliya has lost one of its famous sons; the Golf Club is devastated and grieving; I have lost a dear friend, and we are all the losers due to the death of Clive Tissera. Yes, Clive was an institution in himself, a pillar of rectitude, an unrelenting and ever watchful custodian of the Nuwara Eliya Golf Club, that last oasis of pristine beauty amidst the growing squalor Read More
Well, having got your attention let me at the outset declare that the claim in the title of this missive is indeed quite true! But no, it is not in relation to the ‘Ceylon’ that we all know and love and around which this website revolves! But let me assure you that there is indeed a connection.The Ceylon I refer to is actually in Minnesota in the USA. Read More
The documentary on the late Vivian Louis Blazé which was sent in to the History of Ceylon Tea website has inspired me to write about my father, Ralph de Run, who was a contemporary of Vivian Blazé and planted in the Uva District on Cobo Estate, Badulla and Dammeria Group, Passara when Vivian Blazé was on Sarnia Estate in Badulla.