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The Miners' Strike Day by Day (Paperback)

Local History Mining & Miners

By Brian Elliott
Imprint: Wharncliffe Books
Series: Mining Heritage
Pages: 173
ISBN: 9781903425169
Published: 5th July 2010

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Facing probable redundancy in his mid-fifties, South Elmsall miner Arthur Wakefield, fought for jobs and communities throughout the great strike of 1984/85. He also kept a marvellous diary, recording his experiences, impressions and events in considerable detail. The diary is a unique personal day by day account of the most bitter industrial dispute of the 20th century. Armed with nothing more than determination and a camera, he by-passed countless blockades and in the early hours of the morning he would join his colleagues at picket lines at pits, ports, power stations and works in many parts of Yorkshire, Nottinghamshire, Lancashire and the Midlands. He also attended many rallies and marches, and was a regular 'support the miners' collector in London. Arthur Wakefield was a key witness at the 'Battle of Orgreave', on 18 June 1984, which he describes as 'Monday, Bloody Monday', the 100th day of the strike. His descriptions of the 'Battle' contained here in this book have also helped produce an historical live re-enactment to be shown on Channel 4 in April.

As seen the The Star (Sheffield).

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 Brian Elliott

About Brian Elliott

Brian Elliott was born in the village of Royston near Barnsley and spent his childhood in neighbouring pit village Carlton where his father worked as a miner. Leaving school early, Brian's first job was in professional football, then in local government before starting a career in teaching and Further Education. It was whilst at teacher-training college that he developed a passionate interest on local history, inspired by one of his tutors, who subsequently became a great friend, David Hey. Brian's B.Ed dissertation was on the Oaks Colliery, particularly the great disaster of 1866.

A freelance writer and editor for many years, Brian has published many books and articles on local and regional history, as well as initiating and developing series such as Aspects of Local History and Mining Heritage for the well-known Barnsley-based publisher Pen and Sword Books. He has also appeared on BBC Radio Sheffield on many occasions and has made contributions to BBC Radio 4, BBC and ITV local news programmes. He is a founder volunteer member and trustee of the recently opened Experience Barnsley people's museum and Discovery Centre.

Though now retired, Brian continues to research and write articles and books, for Pen and Sword and Script Media especially relating to coalmining history and has recently developed an interest in the remarkable contribution of miners during the Great War.

Before Brian's father died he recorded an interview with him as part of the research for the book Yorkshire Mining Veterans. This and many other interviews with former miners are deposited in the National Mining Museum for England's oral history archive.

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