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Monday 11 December
My.Anglia > Faculties > Alss > Miners strike > The Chronology

The Chronology

April 1984
The Cambridge Miners’ Support Group was set up by Trades Council.
Public meeting in the Alex Wood Hall in Norfolk Street raised £509.

May
Miners from Maerdy in the Rhondda valley arrived at the Labour   Party Hall.
Lore Burgess replied to letter in The Guardian from Wynona Reeson, Phyllis Bradley, Betty Gascoyne and Zoe Cooper in Chesterfield  and starts organising support for women’s action groups in Derbyshire.

June
Two coachloads of striking miners and their families came from Blidworth to Cambridge and spent the day at Strawberry Fair, touring the colleges, swimming at Parkside pool or sight-seeing. Lunch with food provided by the Co-op was at the Alex Wood Hall and tea at the YMCA. Striking miners with their banners joined the procession and collected money for the strike fund at the fair. A ceilidh was held that evening at the Alex Wood Hall with £110 profit and a fund-raising social was also held that week-end in The Man in the Moon pub.

July
Families needing a holiday were invited to Cambridge with fares or petrol paid plus £10 per head spending money. Thirteen families (with two or more children) visited Cambridge plus 2 teenagers and 2 children. 6 places were provided for Blidworth and Rainworth children at the Woodcraft Folk holiday camp in Norfolk, 2 paid for by Queen Edith’s Ward Labour Party.
Peter Aldrich organised a fund-raising social at the Geldhart pub sponsored by the GMBATU.
Cambridge City Council provided free tickets so that the Unemployed Workers’ Union could run a stall for the miners at the Cambridge Folk Festival with the help of Richard Friedman who printed most of the group’s leaflets during the campaign.
A coach load from Blidworth arrived in Cambridge to join a march and rally in support of the strike. Tony Carter quoted in the local paper.

August
Eight women from Cambridge and their children joined the women from Blidworth and took part in their picket line. The Cambridge women cleaned, helped generally, cooked and served meals for the miners and their dependants in the communal kitchen.
Queen Edith’s ward of the Labour Party start supporting Selby.

September
Nicky Glegg returned to the Blidworth picket line and was arrested for ‘behaviour likely to cause a breach of the peace’. She was found guilty and made to pay a small fine.
Maerdy miners lobbied a NALGO meeting to renew their support for the strike. The Mayor of Cambridge invited the miners into his parlour for a drink.
A jumble sale was held at the Alex Wood Hall.
Merthyr miners replaced Maerdy miners and spoke at local trade union meetings. Miners from the Six Bells pit in Gwent started visiting Cambridge regularly.
Cambridge University set up its own miners’ support group.
A collection at a very large public meeting in the Guildhall raised £1,048 despite the fact that the key speaker, Peter Heathfield, NUM General Secretary, was unable to come.
Alison New was presented with a commemorative plate of appreciation by Pauline Radford of the Blidworth Action Group.
Celeidh held for miners.

November
A lunchtime meeting (women-only) was held in the Cambridge Women’s Resources Centre.
A benefit concert was held in the Alex Wood Hall.
A letter from Sue Maddock published in The Guardian.

December
Each child in Rainworth and Blidworth received a named, gift-wrapped toy or other Christmas present and a   stocking- filler. The value was £2,000. Lore Burgess organised the presents for Rainworth.
Two academics from Frankfurt University visited Cambridge bringing £1,000 for the miners.
£120 profit was made from sale of t-shirts specially made and printed by Rick Leggat.
Collecting boxes were set up in Arjuna and other sympathetic shops by Derek Purdue.
Friday night pub collections were organised by Morag Shiach.

January 1985
£537 was received from a school in West Berlin.
A meeting in support of sacked and imprisoned miners was held in the Carpenter Hall.
The raffle of a miners’ lamp organised by Mary Joannou raised £150.

February
Ian MacGregor called off plans to speak in Cambridge University.
A fund-raising poetry reading was held at Pembroke College with Mick Gowar, John James, Wendy Mulford and others.
A large contingent from Cambridge attended the big Hyde Park demonstration.
A sale of art, pottery and handicrafts in the Fisher Hall organised by Nicky Glegg raised £1,535.
A jazz night at the Alex Wood Hall with Kevin Flanagan and other   musicians raised £100.
A public meeting was organised at St Philips School in Vinery Road.

March
The strike ended. The Maerdy miners’ procession back to the pithead was viewed on cinema and television screens across the world.
A poetry reading by ‘Beat poet’, Allen Ginsberg in King’s College raised £267 for imprisoned miners.

November 2014
£100 raised for sacked and victimised miners at the ‘witness evening’ attended by 85 people held at Anglia Ruskin University in response to an appeal from the floor by Lucy Munby.