The banner of the Grimethorpe Pit Camp
The banner was made by Hari Hyslop, who stayed in the pit camp caravan for periods of time whilst a graphic arts student in London. It is hand-stitched throughout and is 140cm wide and 122cm high.
In 1992 the National Coal Board identified Grimethorpe Colliery as one of ten to be closed. Women Against Pit Closures response was to create camps at six pits, including occupations such as at Parkside Colliery, Lancashire. Barnsley Miners Wives Action Group swiftly organised a camp at Grimethorpe, initially assisted by women from the peace camp at Greenham Common. Their action ended when the pit closed in month 1993 with the loss of hundreds of jobs.
The banner is now in the custody of the Barnsley Miners Wives Action Group.
(Hari has drawn our attention to an error which we are happy to correct. The banner was stitched. No paint was used for the detail. If you look closely at the faces of the children you can just see the stitches.)
Picture on the third side of the card
The Grimethorpe Pit Camp on 18th January 1993
Photography copyright Martin Jenkinson
In 1984 the NCB described Grimethorpe Colliery as follows “All faces are mechanised and 1,900 men produce 1,225,000 tonnes from Newhill, Fenton and Parkgate seams. Work has started on a project for the concentration of the output from Grimethorpe, Barrow, Darfield Main and Houghton deep seams, via underground connections and a 2,541m surface drift to a central coal preparation and disposal plant on Grimethorpe surface.”
We are trying to name the people in this photo. We have, from left to right:
- Gerry Machin
- Anne Scargill
- Rebecca Johnson
(We think Olga Robinson and Joan Machin are in the picture. Can you tell us who is who?)
Martin Jenkinson died in 2012 and leaves us a fantastic collection of images which can be seen at http://martinjenkinson.photoshelter.com/
A book of his photographs from the strike was published in March 2014 and details can be found here.
Barnsley Miners Wives Action Group
Barnsley Miners Wives Action Group formed in the Miners’ Strike of 1984/1985 and consisted of groups from South and West Yorkshire. We ran soup kitchens, supplied food parcels, attended rallies, spoke at support meetings both at home and abroad, picketed, were often arrested and supported other workers in struggle. We gained the attention of the media, giving interviews and participating in television documentaries.
In the second round of pit closures of 1992/93, as part of Women Against Pit Closures, we fought against the destruction of a viable coal industry, a way of life and our communities. We organised pit camps, including one outside the DTI in London where we were again arrested, and joined the occupation of Parkside Colliery.
We continue to support the NUM and provide medical aid to Cuba.
Barnsley Miners Wives Action Group,
2 Huddersfield Road,
Barnsley S70 2LS
A minimum of 10p of the purchase price of this card is donated to the BMWAG.
A report with excelllent pictures of the WAPC event on Saturday 8th March 2014 can be seen here.
Contact Past Pixels on 07743 325 401 or firstname.lastname@example.org with information about other banners.
Photography by Martin Shakeshaft.
Photography, design and print by unionised labour.
www.martinshakeshaft.com www.kavitagraphics.co.uk www.russellpress.com