ON THE SHOULDERS OF GIANTS; MOVIE SPECIAL FAMILIES' TRIBUTE Relatives of brave miners star in film charting 1926 stand against the bosses.
Scotland's most unlikely film star does not have acting in her veins - she has coal dust.
Margaret Feeley, 77, is one of the amateurs cast in an acclaimed big-screen account of the general strike of 1926 and how the mining villages of Fife and the working-class heroes who fought for better conditions were made to suffer.
Margaret, who plays Granny Guthrie in The Happy Lands, reveals how her dad Jim Keicher was one of the jailed miners and, at the end of his sentence, he was given an International Class War Medal to commemorate workers' solidarity.
Margaret still has that medal today and cherishes it.
She said: "I got involved in the film after I saw an ad asking for people who would like to be in a movie and had mining stories to tell.
"I was always proud of my dad and told his story - that he had been in prison at Saughton because of the general strike."
Almost two million workers joined the nine-day general strike in 1926 in support of miners locked out of their pits until they accepted lower wages.
When she was growing up, Margaret would hear stories about those terrible days of 1926.
She said: "My mum used to talk about being at the top of the street with a crowd of women and a young man was standing with them. LANDING TOP ROLES Stars of The Happy Lands in Lochgelly, Fife, where the film is set "Then the Black And Tans came on horseback and took him - he wasn't doing anything. They just whisked him away.
"I knew about soup kitchens because a local man called Mr Connolly started them in our area."
After the strike, there was more suffering for Margaret's family. She said: "I was nine when my dad got his back broken when he was down the pit in Glencraig.
"He had an operation on his spine in the Royal Infirmary in Edinburgh and for four years, he was not able to work. He was sent home in plaster that covered his torso.
"We lived in a miners' row and he was in the room lying on boards on a bed. He lay there for longer than I remember."
Margaret is one of the Fifers recruited by Theatre Workshop Scotland to tell about the region's mining history.
Director Robert Rae and his team spent four years assembling and training the volunteers and bringing the drama to the big screen.
The true-life tales featured in The Happy Lands look like having a global impact. It received a standing ovation at a special screening in Beijing.
Now the film, which has been acclaimed by former Prime Minister Gordon Brown, is to receive its UK premiere at the Glasgow Film Festival.
The movie follows the lives of three families during those harrowing days of a strike that saw miners - who were fighting against reduced pay and longer hours - jailed and families facing starvation and being ejected from the miners' rows.
Betty Hunter was a schoolgirl when she sat with her grandparents listening to stories of how miners struggled to survive during the 1926 general strike.
Now, a lifetime on, 60-year-old Betty's memories have helped in the making of The Happy Lands, in which almost all the cast had no acting experience.
For Betty, who plays one of the resolute miners' women, Maggie McGregor, it's like a slice of her family history coming to the big screen. During the strike, Betty's grandad Thomas Moffat and his four brothers - Abe, Alec, Davy and Jim - were arrested.
Betty said: "They had been in the pits since they were 13 or 14 and during the strike, four of the brothers were charged with sedition.
"Because my grandad was only 16, the magistrate described him as a troublemaker. He got two months in jail and the others were sentenced to six.
"They were told by the Fife Coal Company that they would never work for them again. Their sister Agnes, who was 17, was also sent to jail for subversive activities."
Her great uncle Abe Moffat was the Scottish Miners' president from 1942 to 1961, the first Fifer to hold that title. Betty is proud of her heritage. She said: "As a wee girl, I wasn't interested in playing with dolls. My favourite entertainment was to sit with my gran and grandad and listen to all their stories."
She is well aware of the deprivation and suffering that went on.
She added: "In 1897, my mother's family moved to Fife from Harthill and my grandad told me that, at nine years old, he walked alongside the horse and cart that carried all their possessions.
"At 13, my grandad walked three-and-a-half miles from Kirkcaldy to the pit at East Wemyss in bare feet. He didn't own shoes till he was 16."
By the time of the 1926 strike, Betty's grandparents had six children to feed. But her gran still supported her husband to go on strike for better working conditions. She said: "There was no hesitation. Even though they had nothing, they were fighting for survival."
Joki Wallace, 58, stars as the film's driving force - miner and magistrate Dan Guthrie. It's a role that the stocky Fifer understood.
He said: "I worked in the mines for 28 years until Longannet pit closed.
"I heard all the stories about 1926 from my grandfathers because both lived well into their 80s so I picked things up.
"There were stories about what happened when the soldiers were brought in."
Joki's acting debut was emotional because it brought back memories of the 1984 miners' strike in which he was actively involved.
He said: "It was hellish. The worst thing for me was that I took a mortgage out the year before the strike started.
"My worst memory was not having anything. We got money to look after the bairns - I had two daughters - and milk tokens.
"I had to go to the building society and say I couldn't pay my mortgage. They said we could square up when it was over. They probably thought the strike was going to last a fortnight - it lasted a year.
"But what we went through in 1984 was nothing compared to what the miners endured in 1926.
"It was barbaric. As the film shows, there were things happening like wee yins getting lifted for taking bits of coal off a bing. That was an offence in those days.
"My father told me that on a Sunday, the pit manager would come round the row and, if your garden wasn't tidy, you'd be threatened with being put out. You could be thrown out with all your wee bits of furniture."
Joki got caught up in the making of The Happy Lands after he thought he might be of use as a historical researcher.
He added: "When I went along, I was told they were looking for folk to act. I didn't think that was for me but I decided to give it a go. It turned out that me and my wife Margaret and our granddaughter Rebecca are all in the film."
Joki hopes the film will become a legacy to future generations and let them know about a past that still has lessons for the present.
He said: "It is important for today's youngsters to realise what folk went through to give them the privileges they have."
Margaret added: "There were tears. My niece Alison said she had never thought that it was as hard as that."
The Happy Lands screens at the Glasgow Film Festival on February 17 at the Glasgow Film Theatre and on February 18 at the Clydebank Empire.
WE SAY PAGE 16
My grandad, four brothers and their sister were jailedI've always been proud of my dad and how he was jailed because of the general strike
LANDING TOP ROLES Stars of The Happy Lands in Lochgelly, Fife, where the film is set
SOLIDARITY Protesters march in Fife during the 1985 strike. Right, a rally in 1926
BAND OF BROTHERS Margaret's dad Jim, second from right in front row and, right, amateur actors play miners in The Happy Lands
SACRIFICE Margaret, left, in Lochgelly, cherishes her dad's medal, below