October 29th, 2008


Posted in The Job - Experience by 200

So there we were standing around in the sunshine, bored & pissed off. We were a long way from home earning lots of dosh but missing our families & girlfriends.

It was the eighties up on the miners’ strike. We were at some pit on the picket line stopping any trouble. There wasn’t any trouble. Not there.

We did a couple of hours about. There were several transit loads of us. We did a couple of hours on the picket line & a couple of hours R & R. At this particular place the R & R was either sitting in the mine canteen listening to all the walkman’s we’d bought or wandering round the local estate.

Being pretty resourceful we soon found the miners’ club. We were made welcome & went in for a pint. Word soon got round & we about doubled the clientelle. We’d have a pint or two on the club & then go on the picket line withy the same guys we were drinking with half hour earlier, only we’d be on different sides of the line.

I went in the club once to find one of our lads, jumper & tie off, sleeves rolled up, behind the bar serving police & miners alike.

So back on the picket line two girls approach us on horses, which we thought was pretty unusual. The only horses I’d seen on the whole strike were Met or GMP & usually not in quite such peaceful surroundings.

I can’t remember how the conversation started but it involved asking the girls for a ride (of the horses) and before I knew it I was on the back of a horse disappearing up the road away from the pit. Strangely, after a short ride the girls actually let me & a mate ride their horses on our own. God know what they were thinking as none of us had ridden before, and I’m sure Brian, who was our shift’s area car driver at the time, was half pissed. I managed to take mine about 400 yards up the road without changing gear or falling off. Turning the bloody thing round, mind, that took a little persuasion, but I eventually made it back to the pit without damaging the poor thing.

One of my prized photographs is sitting outside a coal pit somewhere in the Midlands in full uniform astride a horse. I thought it looked so good I put in a suggestion when I got back that we should restart a mounted section. It never got very far.

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  1. bill says:

    That’s not the way the Daily Mail reported on it!

    October 30th, 2008 at 00:24

  2. Area Trace No Search says:

    So I take it we have to wait until the 200 weeks are up until we see the photo?

    October 30th, 2008 at 17:32

  3. Tony F says:

    Sounds like fun!?

    I wonder if that would meet any diversity targets nowadays?

    October 30th, 2008 at 17:39

  4. Blueknight says:

    I remember this very thing happening. It could have been Linby Colliery. There was a Miners welfare at Hucknall Colliery,which was quite near.
    I doubt if we were there at the same time, but the girls that used to ‘make friends’ with the Police around the pit, were creatures of habit and may have done the same thing twice.
    By the way, not sure which Force you were/are, but our Force was confined to soft drinks at the welfare, although we made up for it in the bar at Proteus Camp afterwards.
    Incidentally the was a little old man who was not allowed into the Miners Welfare club, because he was a ‘blackleg’ 60 years previously during the 1926 strike.

    October 31st, 2008 at 00:11

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