At the building firm Rushton & Co. the bosses and shareholders get richer and richer, while the workmen and their families struggle against poverty, hunger and debt - yet think they can do little to change their lives.
Political firebrand Frank Owen, however, is different. He refuses to believe that his masters are his betters and encourages his fellow workers to fight for a new, just society - although convincing them is harden than he thinks . . .
The first authentic portrayal of working-class lives at the start of the twentieth century, 'The Ragged Trousered Philanthropists' has inspired generations of political activists and remains a moving paean to human dignity.