Socialist Worker

Defending the strike against scabs

Issue No. 1

The banners of Newstead, Ollerton, Gedling and Thoresby collieries, backed by 3,000 striking Notts miners, defended their area NUM office against a scabs' rally early on Tuesday morning.

There had been little time to organise. The strikebreakers, organised by Notts area treasurer Roy Link, and Colin Bottomore, the Bentick branch secretary, had laid their plans carefully.

Coaches of scabs, who were paid for the day by the National Coal Board, were allowed to pass freely through the police roadblocks, but thousands of striking miners never made it.

At Pleasley, a small village near Mansfield, hundreds of police blocked the main road while a police helicopter hovered overhead. The handful of miners who got through these blocks spoke of police harassment.

 

Build these levies

At last the Labour Party has come off the fence.

Last week's decision by the national executive committee to levy all party members 50p a week for the miners was a welcome, if belated, step, coming as it did in the seventh week of the strike.

The move, however, is a half-hearted one. Interviewed on Weekend World, Labour deputy leader Roy Hattersley reiterated Neil Kinnock's call for a national strike ballot.

We cannot rely on Neil Kinnock to campaign for all Nottinghamshire miners to join the strike, or to call for mass pickets to close down British industry.

5 May, 1984


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