Orgreave Mass Picnic! & Festival – Free Transport from Barnsley

TheTUC agreed to support Orgreave Mass picnic! & Festival Saturday, 14 June 2014. If anybody to attend the event, Barnsley’s Trades Council is providing transport from Barnsley picking up in Barnsley at 10:30 AM returning to Barnsley at 7 PM. The coach will be picking up outside the White Bear, Church Street Barnsley. Therefore if anybody wants to book place on the bus please let Dave Gibson know ASAP. The bus is free to all

 

Dave contacts details are the following:- Email: gibson.dave1950@gmail.com Tele: 07594857960

Please make every effort to circulate to as many members as possible and non members so we can ensure that one of the greatest political struggle for jobs and communities can be remembered. Yours in solidarity Brian Steele Barnsley Trades Union Council Secretary

Orgreave Festival Update

It is with the deepest sadness that we acknowledge that one of our keynote speakers, Bob Crow RMT General Secretary, will not be joining us at the Orgreave Mass Picnic & Festival. We are pleased to announce that the President of the RMT, Peter Pinkney, will be speaking and together we look forward to paying our tribute to a great comrade.

Orgreave Campaign Picket the IPCC

Over one hundred Protesters from the Orgreave Truth and Justice Campaign gathered today out side the Wakefield IPCC officers to call for more urgent action on their “scoping exercise” Campaigners have grown frustrated by the slow progress from the IPCC we are now seventeen months into their investigation.

The Campaign has grown rapidly with wide support from the Trade Union Movement and plans to hold a huge music festival on June the 14th on the site of the “the battle for Orgreave”

 

 

 

PICKET OF IPCC TO DEMAND PUBLIC INQUIRY INTO ORGREAVE

 The Orgreave Truth and Justice Campaign (OTJC) is holding a second demonstration at the Wakefield office of the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC), Pioneer House, Woolpacks Yard, Wakefield WF1 2SG on Friday 28 March at 1pm. OTJC members are disappointed at the length of time it is taking for the IPCC to come to a conclusion as to whether they will launch a full investigation into the criminal activities of the South Yorkshire Police (SYP) at Orgreave coking works near Rotherham in 1984. On 18 June 1984, 95 miners were arrested at Orgreave after thousands of police officers – many in riot gear, with others on horseback – brutally assaulted miners participating in a strike aimed at defending jobs and mining communities. However when the subsequent court cases took place all of the charges – which included, in many cases, riot – were abandoned when it became clear that the police’s oral and written evidence was unreliable. Each prosecution had been supported by two police officers making near-identical statements. Later, SYP paid out £425,000 in compensation to 39 pickets in out of court settlements. Nevertheless, no police officers were disciplined for misconduct or charged for the injuries they caused to those they attacked. The same force that caused the tragedy at Hillsborough that killed 96 Liverpool fans in 1989 is determined to evade its responsibilities and recently prevented Barnsley football fans from displaying the OTJC banner at the home game against Nottingham Forest on the 30th anniversary of the start of the year long miners’ strike in 1984-85. It was in November 2012 that SYP referred itself to the IPCC to decide whether there should be a full investigation into what happened at Orgreave on 18 June and in the earlier picketing at the plant in May/June. The IPCC has thus had over a year to conduct an investigation exercise. Sadly, the organisation appears to have undertaken a very limited amount of work in collecting and collating information on events at Orgreave. Much of the information it now possesses has been supplied to it by the NUM and solicitor Gareth Pierce. The OTJC therefore remains concerned that no officers will face charges of assault, perjury, perverting the course of justice and misconduct in a public office. In recent years a number of prominent individuals and organisations have described the IPCC as ‘not fit for purpose.’ The OTJC has not – as yet – drawn the same conclusion but our demonstration is intended to remind the organisation that we will not back away from campaigning for our primary demand, which is a full public inquiry. If the IPCC can help in this then they need to get a move on or if not then move aside as quickly as possible. The OTJC meantime welcomes the decision by the Labour Party to launch its Justice for the Coalfields Campaign and calls on Ed Miliband to confirm that in the event of a Labour Government being elected in 2015 it will order a full public inquiry into events at Orgreave in 1984. The OTJC protest will start at 1pm on 28 March outside the IPCC offices IPCC, Pioneer House, Woolpack’s Yards, Wakefield WF1 2SG .
Details:- orgreavejustice@hotmail.com or ring 0114 2509510   Facebook Event here 

Martin Jenkinson, Mark Harvey and Mark Metcalf: Images of the Past – THE MINERS’ STRIKE

http://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk/Images-of-the-Past-The-Miners-Strike/p/6436/

This book is packed with photographs taken by the late Martin Jenkinson, who was responsible for some of the most striking images to have emerged from political and industrial struggle in Britain over the last 30 years. In addition to his work with the National Union of Mineworkers, Martin was also commissioned by many other unions, notably the National Union of Teachers and the TGWU/UNITE. Martin was a former steelworker who combined his politics and his belief in social justice, fairness and equality with his love of photography. Martin died of cancer aged 64 in June 2012.

Martin Jenkinson       Martin Jenkinson, working at Yorkshire Miner’s Gala, Rotherham. June 1985

The coalminers’ strike of 1984/5 was the longest national strike in British history. For a year over 100,000 members of the National Union of Mineworkers, their families and supporters, in hundreds of communities, battled to prevent the decimation of the coal industry on which their livelihoods and communities depended.

Picket wearing a joke police helmet talking to Police at Orgreave on 6 June 1984Picket wearing a joke police helmet talking to Police at Orgreave on 6 June 1984

Margaret Thatcher’s government aimed to smash the most militant section of the British working class. She wanted to usher in a new era of greater management control at work and pave the way for a radical refashioning of society in favour of neo-liberal objectives that three decades later have crippled the world economy.

Miners’ pickets being chased by mounted police at Orgreave on 18 June 1984Miners’ pickets being chased by mounted police at Orgreave on 18 June 1984

Victory required draconian restrictions on picketing and the development of a militarised national police force that made widespread arrests as part of its criminalisation policy. The attacks on the miners also involved the use of the courts and anti-trade union laws, restrictions on welfare benefits, the secret financing by industrialists of working miners and the involvement of the security services.  All of which was supported by a compliant mass media but resisted by the collective courage of miners and mining communities in which the role of Women against Pit Closures in combating poverty and starvation was heroic. Thus inspired by the struggle for jobs and communities an unparalleled movement of support groups right across Britain and in other parts of the world was born and helped bring about a situation where the miners long struggle came close on occasions to winning.

Superintendent John Nesbitt arrests Arthur Scargill, NUM President at Superintendent John Nesbitt arrests Arthur Scargill, NUM President at Orgreave.Orgreave. This was the only arrest made by Nesbitt during his time as Superintendent.

At the heart of the conflict was the Yorkshire region, where even at the end in March 1985, 83 per cent of 56,000 miners were still out on strike. The official Yorkshire National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) area photographer in 1984-85 was Martin Jenkinson and this book of his photographs, supported by a written detailed account from Mark Metcalf, serves as a unique social document on the dispute that changed the face of Britain.

25% of the author’s fees from the sales of this book are to be divided between the Orgreave Truth and Justice Campaign and Justice for Mineworkers. Unite branches interested in getting copies should contact Mark Metcalf on 07952 801783.

Police alleged to have colluded to frame miners

SUNDAY DAILY STAR By Jonathan Corke/Published 9th February 2014

 

Police alleged to have colluded to frame miners had identical wording in their statements THREE police chiefs on duty at a picket where officers are alleged to have ­colluded to frame miners had more than 70 similar or identical lines in their statements.

For 15 months the police watchdog has been studying claims that officers “fitted up” 95 ­miners ­arrested at ­Orgreave, South Yorks, in 1984. Many of the men faced serious charges such as riot but all were cleared amid allegations police fabricated evidence after the incident during the miners’ strike. No officer was ever ­disciplined or charged even though some miners were awarded compensation. The Independent Police Complaints ­Commission (IPCC) began a “scoping ­­exercise” in 2012 after claims that statements from ­arresting officers and others contained identical passages. Now the Daily Star Sunday has been leaked the accounts of three senior officers on duty when 8,000 miners ­assembled to picket the ­coking plant on June 18. They reveal line after line of matching phrases. The first, by Anthony ­Clement, then South Yorkshire Police’s assistant chief ­constable in charge of the operation, is dated June 18. “Police were subjected to a hail of missiles including bricks, stones, lengths of wooden fencing, glass bottles and metal objects” Defence barrister Michael Mansfield QC The other two, by then superintendent Keith Povey and chief inspector Peter Hale, are both dated July 14.Apart from one phrase the statements of Mr Povey, who was knighted in 2001, and Mr Hale are identical. Similarities between all three start on page four of Mr Clement’s account. After page five there are large ­sections of identical ­phrases. Mark George, a criminal barrister who has studied the accounts, said: “The ­evidence of collusion is, I suggest, overwhelming.” Among the similarities is a claim that at 8am Arthur Scargill – then leader of the National Union of Mineworkers – walked along the police line “shaking his head as though he might have been an inspecting officer”. Defence barrister Michael Mansfield QC wrote in his memoirs that videos showed Mr Scargill was “nowhere to be seen” at that time. The trio later claimed ­miners “violently charged police lines”, adding: “Police were subjected to a hail of missiles including bricks, stones, lengths of wooden fencing, glass bottles and metal objects.” Line after line of the ­statements used identical wording and phrases. All three concluded: “There is no doubt in my mind what happened at Orgreave today was a riot.” Mr George said it was “not unacceptable at the time for officers to pool their recollections” to ensure accuracy. But he added: “When the copying is as blatant as it was in this case it smacks of manufacturing an account that suited the narrative the police wished to present. “If that was the case and it was an untrue account, it amounts to perverting the course of justice.” The IPCC will announce later this year whether it will launch a full investigation into claims of perverting the course of justice, perjury and assault.