This is the story of the birth of Britain’s first on-line trade association, how it was formed from nothing and within a year had over 14,000 members and had turned from a pressure group into a fully functioning trade association that was able to lever the power and the pocket of their members to battle the Inland Revenue over IR35 and then the Home Office over the issue of Work Permits.
Initially formed as a single-issue campaign group, it would win over the House of Lords who controversially reject the proposals, it would organise the first ever 'flash mob' to lobby Parliament and then be the first to present an e-petition, the group would pressure the BBC’s flagship political programme Newsnight into transmitting an apology on air for getting its facts wrong and would take the Government all the way to the High Court and the Court of Appeal.
This was an on-line revolution that threw up some great figures who fought on behalf of contractors.
At the start the Professional Contractors Group was effectively a revolutionary organisation, no group had ever been founded on line like it had nor had any group used on-line forums quite so well. They say that revolutions like Saturn consume their own children, this proved true in both France and Russian. For the PCG it would prove true also as ultimately the revolutionaries would make way for more establishment figures. Bizarrely they would be accused of having fought too hard against the tax.
This is the story of the founding of the PCG and its early fight against IR35