AROUND 60 workers staged a protest at Ellington Colliery in Northumberland on Monday demanding the right to work.
Coal UK announced the closure of its pit with the loss of 340 jobs last week. About 210 miners are still being employed to pump water from the mine, but Coal UK insists that water has penetrated the coalface making the mine unsafe. The protesters said they would continue to demand employment at the site.
Hugh Gallagher, one of the miners who staged the protest, said, “We’ve turned up this morning and offered our services to Coal UK. It’s madness that we’re being asked to stay at home when we can pump this water out in less than a week.”
Coal UK was given £100m of public money to maintain jobs in the mining industry. Miners want to know how that money has been used.