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Evening Chronicle COMMENT: Victims of dispute.

TWENTY five years on and the words are still as bitter as the dispute itself which saw the demise of the mining industry and ripped apart communities in the North East.

Norman Tebbitt today acknowledges the Miners strike caused great damage but he is being disingenuous by laying the blame firmly at the door of the National Union of Mineworkers.

His Government led by Margaret Thatcher set up the conflict by stockpiling coal and preparing a detailed strategy to take on ordinary working people stoked up by Arthur Scargill.

Love him or loathe him - Scargill called it right when it came to a pit closure programme - the North East does not having a single working mine.

All that is left is the odd colliery band, celebratory picnic and communities still scarred from the battles of 1984.

It was the miners and their families who were the victims of the political heavyweight contest - pitched against each other and the police, forced to rely on help from families and friends to survive.

It is doubtful either Lord Tebbitt or Mr Scargill would be welcomed into former pit communities by ex-miners today.

But as the debate continues on dwindling energy resources how costly might the demise of the UK coal industry yet prove to be?
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Title Annotation:Leaders
Publication:Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)
Date:Mar 5, 2009
Words:212
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