Born into a working-class family in Islington in 1922, Marie was brought up in Lewis buildings, in
During the second world war, she was heavily involved in trade union and Party work. She met and married John Betteridge, a fellow Communist, in 1946 and they went on to have two children.
In this period, she campaigned for better housing, healthcare, safer streets and more play space. Evicted from the town hall gallery on a number of occasions, together with members of the campaigning groups she worked alongside, such a tactic was often at hand to secure victory. She contested parliamentary elections as a Communist in
John died in 1967 and Marie later made her life with another comrade, Ted Archer, their partnership lasting until her death.
In 1975, Marie Betteridge was named Woman of the Year by the Islington Gazette, a recognition of what she had achieved locally for people. Her reaction to the award was characteristic. She pointed out to Gazette readers that these achievements were not hers – they belonged to those who had organised and fought for change.
In 1983, she decided not to stand against Labour’s Chris Smith being generally supportive of his political outlook, and especially his bravery at coming out as Britain’s first openly gay MP.
In the 1980s, she and Ted moved to Kings
Sources: Islington Tribune 12th March 2010; The Guardian 24th February 2010;