Last pit in Wales closes

Discussion in 'General Chat' started by WelshBluebird, Jan 25, 2008.

  1. WelshBluebird

    WelshBluebird
    Well-known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2005
    Messages:
    2,511
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    86
    Location:
    Rhondda
    Ratings:
    +135
    While a lot of you probably haven't even heard of it, its something that is pretty close to my heart.

    Tower colliery, the last deep mine in wales, has closed today. While again, most of you may not know the story of the mine, it is something that makes me proud to come from the valley's.

    Basically, the mine was closed by Thatcher (the government claimed there was no coal left). But the miners bought the pit with their redundancy pay, and have been working at the site since. Despite what Thatcher said, there was plenty of coal there, and the mine made money right away.

    The BBC have a story about the closure:
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/wales/7200432.stm

    So to the miners: well done, you've made us proud.
     
  2. gulliver dark

    gulliver dark
    Banned

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2008
    Messages:
    146
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Location:
    Eastbourne
    Ratings:
    +10
    I have just seen this on the news. It's an interesting story and a very proud achievement for the people.

    I confess, though, I did have to smile; there was a fellow who'd been working in the mine, covered in coal-dust, talking about how he'd been down there every day of his working life, I would imagine in quite grim conditions, shedding a tear that he wouldn't be going down there any more. I think I would be thanking my lucky stars, but what do I know, how can I possibly understand how much it means to be a part of that community, with its history.

    I hope life after the pit for that fellow will be long and happy.
     
  3. Sandy13

    Sandy13
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2006
    Messages:
    2,172
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    51
    Location:
    S. W. Wales
    Ratings:
    +88
    I used to live in Penderyn, which is a couple of miles from Tower Colliery, and my son worked there until Maggie closed it, but he didn't buy back in, which was a relief to his mother and I, his redundancy money went a long way to buying his house.

    My son's best pal is one of the guys who finished today, and he's going to work further down the valley, in an open drift mine, it's the only job he has had since leaving school, so after 30 years of working underground, he will still be working coal, but in a far safer environment.
     
  4. gulliver dark

    gulliver dark
    Banned

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2008
    Messages:
    146
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Location:
    Eastbourne
    Ratings:
    +10
    Totally irrelevant but I do have a soft spot for Wales, never been there but my great-great grandmother was Welsh, she lived in Sussex but according to my late Grandad she used to wear the Welsh national costume! Apparently she was quite a character, quite fiery. There is something about Wales; I feel something about it that I don't feel about, say, Scotland or Ireland and I think Great Gran is up there somewhere saying, "Don't you ever forget Wales is in your blood".
     
  5. Singh400

    Singh400
    Distinguished Member

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2006
    Messages:
    17,850
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    166
    Location:
    Earth
    Ratings:
    +3,370
    Was watching this news story on Sky News. Seems like quite a sad day for all those involved.
     
  6. johntheexpat

    johntheexpat
    Distinguished Member

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2006
    Messages:
    9,367
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    166
    Location:
    France
    Ratings:
    +2,811
    I know there's a lot to be said for the point of view that miners in deep coal mines are better of without the grime, the danger, the health risks, the unimaginable working conditions etc etc, but when the mine closes what do they have? Not a lot.
    Mining, for all its downside, was/is a proud and dignified job. For centuries it provided the backbone of economic growth, through abundant energy supplies. Anyone who was a part of this, no matter how small a cog, has every right to take pride in the fact that they did their bit to put the Great in Britain.
    As for those who say they the miners are better off without the jobs, I say get real. Go to ex mining areas and see what the reality is. From having hard but essential jobs and a proud community spirit, you have broken communities with no real sense of purpose, those who have jobs are either low paid jobs that a monkey could do or 'fake' jobs created by huge subsidy and everyone knows they will disappear once the support runs out. And how can any community ever recover from the slap in the face when the mines that made the UK an economic powerhouse are closed so that the power stations can burn coal that was mined by slave labour children in Columbia?

    Just a few thoughts, but its definitely the end of an era, so for that we should acknowledge the passing of Tower Colliery.
     
  7. WelshBluebird

    WelshBluebird
    Well-known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2005
    Messages:
    2,511
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    86
    Location:
    Rhondda
    Ratings:
    +135
    Don't want to derail the thead, but I totally agree with you johntheexpat.
    Living where I do, the impact of the mine closure's is very real to me. I live with it everyday. The Rhondda is still suffering. Most people in my year in school (last year of sixth form) are moving away to go to uni, and don't plan on coming back. It's sad - but there are very few options for someone my age.
     
  8. HMHB

    HMHB
    Distinguished Member

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2001
    Messages:
    27,350
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    166
    Location:
    Nottinghamshire
    Ratings:
    +6,204
    You've just described Mansfield there mate so I know what you mean. This place is full of sad, aimless people now.
     
  9. jondy1

    jondy1
    Standard Member

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2005
    Messages:
    94
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Ratings:
    +1
    well said:thumbsup:
     
  10. lostinspace

    lostinspace
    Well-known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2004
    Messages:
    1,966
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    116
    Ratings:
    +747
    Agree with what's been said before. Sad day not just for the miners, but for their community as a whole.
    I've lived in the mining ares of South Yorkshire all my life, and saw villages die after the pit closed.
    Maybe if the Tories had factored in the cost of sustaining destroyed communities after shutting the pits, they'd have realised it was cheaper, and much better, to keep them open.
    They didn't close pits, they closed down people's lives.
    I hope this community fares better.
     
  11. gibbsy

    gibbsy
    Moderator

    Joined:
    May 17, 2007
    Messages:
    13,117
    Products Owned:
    3
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    166
    Location:
    Cwm Cynon, De Cymru
    Ratings:
    +7,241
    Mad Maggie Thatcher destroyed the livelihood of many men of the Cynon Valley, in which Tower is situated. Deep Duffryn, Kyber and Abercynon were put under the axe by this vindictive woman. All credit to Tyrone and the men of Tower who proved her to totally wrong. The sense of community has now left the valley forever and it was a sad day indeed when Tower finally closed.

    My grandfather and father were miners, to me they are the salt of the earth. My father, 89, is still alive but full of dust and can hardly walk a step, but he always remembers the closeness of the men working underground and those that died in accidents, of which there were plenty.

    I went underground on visits and I would never have wanted to work in such dangerous conditions, especially for the money on offer. I was a firefighter and will always remember the kindness of Tyrone O'Sullivan and the members of the NUM at Tower in the firefighers bitter strike of 1977-1978.
     

Share This Page

Loading...