History on our Side

29 Mar 2009

Historian Hywel Francis MP, assesses the legacy of the miners strike for Wales in his newly published book,  History on our Side  (Iconau).

A positive legacy is the unique solidarity during the 1984-85 miners’ strike within valley communities and across Wales

Tower striking miner in June 1984, Robert True of Treherbert, had said to Hywel, ‘Surely, we can’t lose, history is on our side!’

Hywel Francis had a unique insight into the way the way in which the struggles for jobs and communities broadened into a powerful national movement in Wales, involving trades unions, political parties, churches, the Welsh Language Society, community, peace, lesbian and gay groups.

In particular, he highlights the very special role played by women’s support groups. The strategy of a broad democratic alliance across Wales is analysed as is the experience of defeat and renewal after 1985.

History on our Side  is published 25 years to the day the strike started in Wales. A series of celebratory events will take place that week commencing with a launch at the Houses of Parliament and concluding with an event at Onllwyn Miners’ Welfare Hall where the striking miners’ choir will be reunited.

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