Blackball celebrates strike that started Labour movement

  • 22/03/2008

Politicians flocked to Labour's spiritual home on the West Coast to celebrate the centenary of a miners' strike which helped build the country's Labour movement into a political force.

It rained, but the parade went on as Blackball's swollen population cheered the descendants of the strikers.

Workers Unite is a symbolic march down the main street of Blackball to commemorate the centenary of one of the country's most famous strikes.

The strike started because the miners wanted 30 minutes instead of 15 to eat their sandwiches in what was known as crib time.

The strike led to the growth of the Labour movement and later on the election of the first Labour Government. Blackball's mine closed in 1964 but its symbolism remains strong - old miners' songs and still remembered.

In true West Coast fashion celebrations are expected to go on late into the night.

source: newshub archive