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Tom Jones (1908-90) was born in Lancashire but was raised in the coal-mining village of Rhosllannerchrugog, Denbighshire. In 1937 he went to Spain and joined the International Brigades to fight for the Spanish Republican Government during the Spanish Civil War (1936-9). The British Battalion of the International Brigades consisted of over 2350 volunteers who became involved in many of the major battles in the conflict. At the final battle on the river Ebro in July 1938, Jones was wounded and captured by the Facists. His family believed him dead, but his death sentence was later commuted to 30 years imprisonment. He was eventually released from prison in 1940 after a deal was struck between the British and Spanish governments. From then on he was known as 'Twm Sbaen' (Twm from Spain).

Following his return to Wales, Jones become actively involved in the trade union movement. He became a full-time officer with the Transport and General Workers' Union (TGWU) in north Wales and in 1953, he succeeded Huw T. Edwards as secretary of the north Wales region. Following the amalgamation of the north and south Wales regions, he became secretary for the whole of Wales until his retirement in 1973.

Source: Gwyn Jenkins, 'Obituary: Tom Jones (1908-90)', 'Llafur', vol. 5, no. 4 (1991), 109.

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