We’ve an important weekend of events coming up in Leeds NW soon.
Owen Jones will be with us on 15 November.
But the weekend starts on Friday, 14 November – in Otley – when we’re commemorating the Thirtieth Anniversary of the Miner’s Strike.
Our Guest speakers will be Ian Lavery MP, and Mark Metcalf.
There’ll be music by Redgrass.
The Venue: Otley Labour Rooms, Walkergate, Otley, LS21 1HB
Date: Friday 14th November
Tickets: £10 and £5 for concessions. Pay on the door
Reserve your place here.
2014 marks thirty years since the 1984/5 miners’ strike. It was perhaps the most important event that took place in Britain in the second half of the twentieth century.
In Leeds trade unionists, local Labour Party members, Constituency Labour Parties and the Labour Council provided valuable practical and political assistance to striking miners and their communities facing an unprecedented attack by the government, the entire apparatus of the state and the media.
During the course of the strike, Leeds District Labour Party raised £250,000 to donate to the strike fund (nearly £700,000 in today’s money) and ran a stall in the market every week, which was well-supported by the public in Leeds.
Coalfield communities still live with the consequences of Thatcher’s ideologically-driven attack and, in fact, so do working people in all communities in Britain.
Labour at Westminster has called for a public apology for the injustices done to the mining communities.
Michael Dugher led a historic debate in Parliament this week as part of the “Justice for the Coalfields” campaign.
The motion called on Members of Parliament to:
• acknowledge that the recent release of the 1984 Cabinet papers showed that the government at the time misled the public about the extent of its pit closure plans and sought to influence police tactics;
• recognise the economic legacy of the pit closure programme in coalfield communities across the UK;
• and back continued regeneration and much needed support for coalfield communities as part of a wider programme to boost growth in Britain’s regions.
In his speech, Michael also called for an apology from Conservative ministers for the lies by the Thatcher government at the time about the secret pit closure plan. And called on Ministers to: set out all the details of the interactions between the Government and the police at the time of the strike; to release all information about government-police communications around Orgreave; and to consider initiating a swift, independent review into what happened at Orgreave if the Independent Police Complaints Commission can’t or won’t undertake a proper investigation.
North West Leeds Labour Party is hosting an event to mark the 30th Anniversary of these historic and tragic events.
The guest speaker will be Ian Lavery MP. Ian represents the constituency of Wansbeck (in the North East) where he’s lived all his life and he was the President of the National Union of Mineworkers. As a young miner, Ian was on strike throughout the 1984/5 strike. Ian is now Chair of the Trade Union Group of Labour MPs.
Ian will be reflecting upon the miners’ strike 30 years on and will also be speaking about the challenges the Labour and Trade Union movement now faces.
We will also be joined by Mark Metcalf from the Orgreave Truth and Justice Campaign
Ian will be preceded by a set from Redgrass performing songs about being working class and the struggle, including a song inspired by the band attending the Orgreave Miner’s Picnic about the strike itself.
To kick off the night well known Leeds Singer Songwriter Gary Kaye will perform a set.
Gary Kaye – the ‘Woody Guthrie of the West Riding – has been writing and performing music for the past 20 years. During that time he has played in bands such as Chaos, The Big Bang and Hollow Horse. Boppin With Kropotkin is Gary’s debut solo CD.
Gary Kaye has built a strong reputation of the folk circuit, particularly within the political protest movement. Gary has played gigs alongside the likes of Leon Rossellson, Roy Bailey, Atilla the Stockbroker, Tom Hingley (Inspiral Carpets), David Rovics and Swill Odgers (The Men They Couldn’t Hang), as well as performing on stage with such folk luminaries as Billy Bragg, The Levellers and The Men They Couldn’t Hang
That same weekend – on Saturday 15 November – we are hosting two
Audiences with Owen Jones.
One in Otley https://www.facebook.com/events/1564070950479913/
One at the Rosebowl
More detail on that to follow.
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