Tale of miners’ strike Battle for Orgreave to be screened in Broadstairs

The Battle for Orgreave

A film about events during the 1984/85 miners’ strike is to be screened in Broadstairs on Sunday 12 November.

Called “The Battle for Orgreave” the film explores what happened when striking miners and police clashed at the Orgreave coking plant in one of the most violent encounters in British industrial history.

Organised by the North East Kent Trades Union Council (NEKTUC), the screening is part of a campaign for a full and independent inquiry into the events at Orgreave, despite refusals by the government.

Pauline Farrance of NEKTUK said: “What happened during the Miners’ Strike may seem a long time ago now but how the police handled the strikers at Orgreave. and the lack of justice in the prosecution proceedings which followed, remain issues of huge importance to every one of us.

“We have only to look at the Hillsborough Disaster of 1989, where the families of the dead and injured were tenacious in their fight for truth and justice.  It was only in 2012 that the Independent Police Complaints Commission finally held an investigation, when one of the findings was that over 200 police statements had been altered.”

Pauline, a former Thanet councillor, added: “Our democracy depends on the right of people to speak out and protest in defence of their rights.  If we lose that right we’re finished.”

The screening will be followed by a discussion with Orgreave campaigner, Chris Peace and high-profile lawyer, Matt Foot.  Brought up in a rural mining community, Chris Peace currently works as a criminal defence solicitor. Matt Foot, a criminal defence lawyer for 25 years, has specialised in appeals, protest and terrorism cases. He is the co-author of “Charged – How The Police Try To Suppress Protest” and will be doing a book signing at the event.

NEKTUC is funding the event — all proceeds will go to the Orgreave Truth and Justice Campaign, which is working towards a major demonstration in Sheffield on June 18 -the 40th anniversary of the Battle of Orgreave,

The screening is on Sunday 12 November at the Palace Cinema, Harbour Street, Broadstairs CT10 1ET. Doors open at 12noon. Tickets are £5 in advance, £10 cash on the door. To book a place email [email protected]

9 Comments

  1. The police in my experience are totally without public accountability, they are only accountable to themselves! Its time they were made to be publicly accountable, with regular public meetings, even the so called Independent Office for Police Conduct is corrupt! I made a complaint against a senior police officer for failing to enforce the law, and it went through local police, the Kent Police Standards Team, and the Independent Office for Police Conduct, and not one of them applied their own Complaints Procedure so my complaint failed, in order to protect the career of the police officer concerned, Duurh!

  2. The mining industry in the mid 1980s was losing money hand over fist and was frankly, clapped out. The redundancy schemes were the best in any British industry but the miners were led by an idiot called Arthur Scargill who, like most socialists today, was intent on bringing down the government. The miners were myopic enough to follow his every word. Scargill and the miners eventually lost after causing huge inconvenience to the rest of the country, The police proved an effective tool at breaking up demonstrations and by the time Orgreave came around both sides were daggers drawn. In these environmentally conscious times, imagine the outcry if people wanted to go down mines today to bring out coal? What a frightful thing to do.

    • “like most socialists today, was intent on bringing down the government. ”
      It won’t need the socialists to bring down this government.
      They’re doing a fine job themselves.

  3. It wasn’t because she was environmentally -aware that Thatcher wanted to close the pits. And no industries were set up in advance for the ex-miners.

  4. At the time I was married to a German woman, and like many other EU countries Germany had a surplus of coal. The German answer as I remember, was to pay their minors for 3 days a week, and unemployment benefit for the other 2. During this time they organised job clubs, re-training, and further education qualification courses. What did Thatcher do, she destroyed whole mining communities after sacking the miners, leaving thousands on the scrap heap for the rest of their lives. This was her revenge for the miners strike during 1973/74, and the 3 day week that lost Ted Heath the election in 1974, after he said who runs the country, well it turned not to be him!

  5. Looking forward to this screening.

    Delighted to see Paul Foot’s son, Matt Foot helping turnover ongoing injustices too.

    Anyone who cares about the rights of people to object and protest against the insidious actions of capitalists, dictatorships, rogue and elite supporting governments should attend.

  6. Charged
    How the Police Try to Suppress Protest
    by
    Matt Foot, Morag Livingstone

    Charged is an essential investigation into the role of policing protest in Britain today. As the UK government tries to suppress all forms of dissent, in their pursuit of more control, how do the police manage crowds, provoke violence and even break the law?Since the 1980s under successive governments the police have been allowed to suppress protests, using aggressive tactics – from batons to horse charges to kettling. The landscape of how police deal with protest changed following criticism of the police during the 1981 Brixton riots. New military-style tactics were sanctioned by the Thatcher government, in secret. Over the next forty years those protesting against racism, unfair job losses, draconian laws, or for environmental protection were subject to brutal tactics. In the aftermath, media attention denigrates protesters while the police are praised and continue to act with impunity.Looking through these moments of conflict widens our understanding of policing public order to reveal the true character of the state. Since the 1980s successive governments, from Thatcher to Johnson, covertly plot to suppress protests, using standardised aggressive tactics – from batons to horse charges to kettling. Through undisclosed documents and eyewitness accounts the authors reveal organised police violence against miners at Orgreave, print workers at Warrington, anti poll tax campaigners, student protestors and Black Lives Matter. The voices of protesters however have been undeterred.

    Do come to the screening, discussion and the opportunity to buy the book from one of the authors.

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