Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/476/2115
Threat to Tower Colliery jobs
SIXTY MINERS at Tower Colliery, in South Wales, have received redundancy notices. Twelve years ago, when the Tories privatised the coal industry, Tower miners fought to save their pit. This ended with a workers' buyout.
Socialist Party Wales's predecessor, Wales Militant Labour, supported the creation of a workers' co-operative as a much better option than the colliery being taken over by a private mining company. But we warned that Tower would come under pressure from private energy, mining and financial corporations. Today, Tower remains the only workers' cooperative coal mine in the world and redundancies at Tower come as a shock to workers in South Wales.
The National Union of Mineworkers says it will not accept compulsory redundancies. Tyrone O'Sullivan, chairman of the colliery and the former Lodge Secretary, has told the press that he hopes to find jobs for all those who have had letters. Many miners are demanding that these jobs are in the mining industry with no loss of pay and with trade union recognition.
The pit is scheduled to cease production in early 2008. It is hoped that there will be jobs for some of the workforce at Aberpergwm Colliery, nearby in the Neath Valley. Aberpergwm will be returning to full production at about the same time.
An Australian coal mining company has invested at Pentreclwydau Colliery, renamed the Unity mine, which may also be reopening soon. The National Union of Mineworkers will be fighting to ensure that these pits are fully unionised with trade union rates of pay and conditions.
In The Socialist 1 March 2007:
Socialist Party news and analysis
War and terrorism
Socialist Party congress
International socialist news and analysis
Workplace news and analysis