Reunion to be held for miners' strike supporters

BITTER DISPUTE: Arthur Scargill at the head of a march and rally in May, 1984

BITTER DISPUTE: Arthur Scargill at the head of a march and rally in May, 1984

First published in News

A SUPPORT group which provided meals to striking miners is to reunite to mark the 30th anniversary of the industrial action.

Atherton and Tyldesley Miners’ Support Group and miners from local collieries will mark the anniversary at The Atherton Arms on March 14.

The former Labour Club was the headquarters for the group during the 12-month dispute, which started at Corton Wood pit in Yorkshire on March 5, 1984.

Former Bickershaw miner Mick Shaw, who now lives in Tyldesley, said: “We are inviting everyone who was involved in the strike in the Lancashire area to come and join us.

“Thirty years may well have passed, but to some of us it feels like only last month.

“We want to look back and commemorate the stand we made, to thank all those who supported us and to reminisce and enjoy each other’s company once again. If people bring memorabilia from the strike then even better.”

The group provided daily meals to miners and their families in addition to collecting and distributing food parcels in support of National Union of Miners’ members involved in the union’s fight with the National Coal Board (NCB).

The NCB was strongly backed by Margaret Thatcher’s Tory Government and, despite the efforts of the strikers and their supporters, it ended in a defeat for the union, leading to closure of pits and the demise of the coal mining industry.

There will be a free buffet courtesy of Leigh branch of the Unite union. Call 07807 521337 if you want to come along.

Comments (5)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

9:16am Mon 10 Mar 14

Samotnaf says...

There seem to be very few texts on this strike that look at it from the perspective of learning lessons that could be useful for any future eruption of class struggle, so I've decided to use this comment thread to "advertise" this hardly known text of mine, available free online: it's called "So near - so far" - http://dialectical-d
elinquents.com/?page
_id=30

It was written at the end of the 20th anniversary, in 2005, and begins like this:

"The present evaporation of community and intensified isolation and reification would have been very unlikely if the miners had won. You only have to look at the brutality of everyday life in the former mining communities themselves to see that. Nowadays these areas suffer from a big increase in:

– burglary and muggings by the young of the old in areas which, up till 1985, had no experience of mugging, areas where people regularly left their front doors unlocked even as late as the 80s,

- alcoholism and drug addiction rife

- general suicidal tendencies and nervous breakdowns amongst the old and young

- intensified domestication – everyone indoors.

- intensified madness of all varieties.

And all this taking place in a booming economy:

- property prices soaring

- a building boom for middle income housing

- gentrification

- the transformation of pit villages into functional dormitory towns for the larger close-by cities

- pretty good wages amongst the skilled working class compared with the past

- scary poverty for the rest, though with relatively low unemployment levels, compared with the 80s.

As virtually everybody reading this will know, these tendencies are by no means confined to the former mining areas, though they seem to be more intensified there. Whilst the defeat of 1926 was brutal, the difference between now and then is that in the aftermath of 1926, an aftermath which lasted generations, there was at least a community of class hatred towards the ruling class and its middle class minions. Nowadays, particularly amongst most of the young, there’s just an individual consciousness perplexed by the meaninglessness of life and at a loss to comprehend the reason and history of this meaninglessness."
There seem to be very few texts on this strike that look at it from the perspective of learning lessons that could be useful for any future eruption of class struggle, so I've decided to use this comment thread to "advertise" this hardly known text of mine, available free online: it's called "So near - so far" - http://dialectical-d elinquents.com/?page _id=30 It was written at the end of the 20th anniversary, in 2005, and begins like this: "The present evaporation of community and intensified isolation and reification would have been very unlikely if the miners had won. You only have to look at the brutality of everyday life in the former mining communities themselves to see that. Nowadays these areas suffer from a big increase in: – burglary and muggings by the young of the old in areas which, up till 1985, had no experience of mugging, areas where people regularly left their front doors unlocked even as late as the 80s, - alcoholism and drug addiction rife - general suicidal tendencies and nervous breakdowns amongst the old and young - intensified domestication – everyone indoors. - intensified madness of all varieties. And all this taking place in a booming economy: - property prices soaring - a building boom for middle income housing - gentrification - the transformation of pit villages into functional dormitory towns for the larger close-by cities - pretty good wages amongst the skilled working class compared with the past - scary poverty for the rest, though with relatively low unemployment levels, compared with the 80s. As virtually everybody reading this will know, these tendencies are by no means confined to the former mining areas, though they seem to be more intensified there. Whilst the defeat of 1926 was brutal, the difference between now and then is that in the aftermath of 1926, an aftermath which lasted generations, there was at least a community of class hatred towards the ruling class and its middle class minions. Nowadays, particularly amongst most of the young, there’s just an individual consciousness perplexed by the meaninglessness of life and at a loss to comprehend the reason and history of this meaninglessness." Samotnaf
  • Score: -2

1:11pm Mon 10 Mar 14

cliff4treasurer says...

There is a thousand years worth of coal under our feet and Maggie destroyed the industry for personal gain.
Scargill didn't help with his tactics but I suppose his heart was in the right place, although he ended up with a few quid himself;
For the leader of this country to use this dispute for her own personal financial gain was a disgrace and something she will always be remembered for.
The way the miners families where treated ,utter contemt,the community destruction and the use of the police ,some of whom happily smashed the heads of the miners with batons on the picket lines was also something to behold in this free democratic country of ours.
Maggie Thatcher, fighter for democracy all over the world? don't make me laugh.
There is a thousand years worth of coal under our feet and Maggie destroyed the industry for personal gain. Scargill didn't help with his tactics but I suppose his heart was in the right place, although he ended up with a few quid himself; For the leader of this country to use this dispute for her own personal financial gain was a disgrace and something she will always be remembered for. The way the miners families where treated ,utter contemt,the community destruction and the use of the police ,some of whom happily smashed the heads of the miners with batons on the picket lines was also something to behold in this free democratic country of ours. Maggie Thatcher, fighter for democracy all over the world? don't make me laugh. cliff4treasurer
  • Score: 0

3:05pm Mon 10 Mar 14

Jim271 says...

The Strike was itself, illegal, all strike action has to be voted on by its members however Scargill decided to call the strike without a vote like some kind of dictator.

Many persons continued to work because they not agree to strike on the grounds that a ballot had not been carried out and were persecuted at home because of it, a taxi driver was killed taking a miner to work.

The miners had held the country to ransom in the 1970s and were attempting to do it again, don't get me wrong I was the first the celebrate the end of Thatcher but there are dictators wearing different colour ribbons.

Everyone is in for what they can personally get out of it these days!
The Strike was itself, illegal, all strike action has to be voted on by its members however Scargill decided to call the strike without a vote like some kind of dictator. Many persons continued to work because they not agree to strike on the grounds that a ballot had not been carried out and were persecuted at home because of it, a taxi driver was killed taking a miner to work. The miners had held the country to ransom in the 1970s and were attempting to do it again, don't get me wrong I was the first the celebrate the end of Thatcher but there are dictators wearing different colour ribbons. Everyone is in for what they can personally get out of it these days! Jim271
  • Score: 1

4:08pm Mon 10 Mar 14

Samotnaf says...

2 strikers were killed by scabs (David Jones and Joe Green), plus 2 miners were killed when a cop car drove towards them at top speed and they swerved away and crashed. No-one was even arrested for these murders. Others were killed when they were scrabbling for coal and the slag heap fell on them. But those who opposed the strike only remember the scab mini-cab driver.
As for the idea that the strike was illegal - firstly it was not Scargill who called the strike - it was a wildcat called by Cortonwood pit. But the point about ballots and the law is that laws are made by the rulers to keep them up and to keep the working class down . Ballots isolate people from each other - which is why the rulers with their individualist ideology almost always favour ballots .And besides, why did miners who weren't immediately under threat have the right to vote others out of a job?
2 strikers were killed by scabs (David Jones and Joe Green), plus 2 miners were killed when a cop car drove towards them at top speed and they swerved away and crashed. No-one was even arrested for these murders. Others were killed when they were scrabbling for coal and the slag heap fell on them. But those who opposed the strike only remember the scab mini-cab driver. As for the idea that the strike was illegal - firstly it was not Scargill who called the strike - it was a wildcat called by Cortonwood pit. But the point about ballots and the law is that laws are made by the rulers to keep them up and to keep the working class down . Ballots isolate people from each other - which is why the rulers with their individualist ideology almost always favour ballots .And besides, why did miners who weren't immediately under threat have the right to vote others out of a job? Samotnaf
  • Score: 3

7:33pm Mon 10 Mar 14

mr.mark.c says...

cliff4treasurer wrote:
There is a thousand years worth of coal under our feet and Maggie destroyed the industry for personal gain.
Scargill didn't help with his tactics but I suppose his heart was in the right place, although he ended up with a few quid himself;
For the leader of this country to use this dispute for her own personal financial gain was a disgrace and something she will always be remembered for.
The way the miners families where treated ,utter contemt,the community destruction and the use of the police ,some of whom happily smashed the heads of the miners with batons on the picket lines was also something to behold in this free democratic country of ours.
Maggie Thatcher, fighter for democracy all over the world? don't make me laugh.
More like 10,000 years as we dont use it, so why mine something that isn't used ?
[quote][p][bold]cliff4treasurer[/bold] wrote: There is a thousand years worth of coal under our feet and Maggie destroyed the industry for personal gain. Scargill didn't help with his tactics but I suppose his heart was in the right place, although he ended up with a few quid himself; For the leader of this country to use this dispute for her own personal financial gain was a disgrace and something she will always be remembered for. The way the miners families where treated ,utter contemt,the community destruction and the use of the police ,some of whom happily smashed the heads of the miners with batons on the picket lines was also something to behold in this free democratic country of ours. Maggie Thatcher, fighter for democracy all over the world? don't make me laugh.[/p][/quote]More like 10,000 years as we dont use it, so why mine something that isn't used ? mr.mark.c
  • Score: -2

Comments are closed on this article.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree