Saturday, 13 September 2014

On Thursday things did not look good, there had been little progress at ACAS, management were still trying to wriggle out of their commitments and we were all getting ready to lose another day’s money.  The rumour was that the only thing they had agreed to was to not reduce our five day refresher course to four days which wasn’t much as only a few weeks ago the Rail Accident Investigation Branch’s report into last year's incident at Holland Park had recommended more training rather than less.

All that seems to have changed in the space of 24 hours, last night we got word that “after developments at talks” we were “in a position to suspend the strike”, although “suspend” suggests that not everything has been settled and if management try to do a “Nortious Maximus” on us the way they did on stations the strike could be back on again.  Fingers crossed.

While we’re on the subject of strikes I would urge you all to go see “Pride”, a thoroughly wonderful film about the Lesbians and Gays Support the Miners campaign back in 1984 with Dominic West, Imelda Staunton, Bill Nighy and the bloke who plays Moriarty in Sherlock.  I got terribly nostalgic, not just because I was in my 20s with hair and a waistline but also it reminded me of the sense of unity I felt back then.  It didn’t matter if you were gay, black, trade unionist, feminist, socialist or whatever, if you were anything other than “normal” Thatcher had declared war on us and we were all “the enemy within”.

I wonder if I’ve still got my “Coal not dole” badge……..


  1. I've recently re-watched another couple of films set in the era ("Brassed off" and "The full Monty") which really sum up the despair felt by many at the time. It certainly was a divided country then and although I was lucky in that I walked straight into a job after college, you couldn't help but sympathise with others less fortunate. It seems I really must get to see "Pride." Good luck with your dispute.

  2. Try this. Wonderland, 2014 play from the Hampstead Theatre

    And if you haven't seen it see "Made in Dagenham"

    My Dad and I were made redundant on the same day in July 1982 and we signed on at the Job Centre together. He was out of work for a month, I didn't get a job until December, ten years later I was made redundant on exactly the same day in July and couldn't get a permanent job for five years.