Thursday, March 05, 2009

Rememberrring the Miners Strike and why I became involved in Trades Unions and Politics!!

It is an important Anniversary today for British society as well as me personally. The Miners Strike began on this day in 1984, orchestrated by a vicious Thatcher Government to crush the Miners Union once and for all. The consequences were profound for British society and it made my blood boil to hear that stupid old dinosaur and buffon, Peter Walker, thje then Secretary of State for Energy, on TV this morning still trying to justify it, although her did a deservedly very hard time form the BBC Journalist!!
I saw the stage show of Billy Elliot a few weeks ago with stark imagery of the strike including Met Police on duty at the Durham Picket Lines waving tenners in the faces of the Miners!!
My first ever direct political action was to take part in the Miners March in Birmingham when I was a Post Grad Student at Aston University and when I came to work for Southwark Council in December 1984 I joined NALGO and collected money for Kent Miners every Friday afternoon on the steps of Spa Road Town Hall.
I recall collecting money from cars stuck t the traffic lights at Southwark Town Hall and getting over £200 an hour in our buckets!!!
I was clear then why I wanted to be involved with politics and be in the only party seriously intent on making society fairer, the Labour Party!! A decision I have never regretted or doubted since and I have now been in the Party for 23 years and an Elected Councillor for 15 years!!


John Wentworth said...

John. I am pleased to have come across your Blog.
I well remember the miners' strike and the great support given by local people in Camberwell. My late parents (George & Ellen Wentworth) were very active in the Peckham party in the 80's and 90's.
I remember my dad organising food parcels for distribution to miners families.
Keep up the good work. And good luck in getting rid of the incompetent and uncaring Tory/Lib Dem council in May 2010.

Cllr. John J. Friary Blog said...


Thanks for commenting.

Of course I knew your mum and dad well and know how dedicated your mum was to the Labour Party and her beloved Dinner Ladies!! A really lovely lady!!

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