For the 19th year in a row Show Racism the Red Card attend Durham Miners Gala
Keeping to its tradition, on the second Saturday of July was the 131st year of the Durham Miners Gala. The event which celebrates the region’s heritage, more than twenty years after the closure of the last local pit, saw an estimated 150,000 people take to the streets of Durham to witness banners from the former colliery village be paraded through the city accompanied by brass bands.
Durham Miners Gala, or also known as ‘The Big Meeting’ is the largest trade union event in Europe and takes great pride in the event as it is a great day for the family and brings a range of people together. By 8am the streets were full of crowds cheering the bands and banners as they headed through the city and onto the racecourse. At the racecourse a number of guest speakers took to the podium to address the large numbers who were making the most of the July sunshine. As well as guest speakers there was a variety of family entertainment at the racecourse as well as campaign stands.
Show Racism the Red Card (SRtRC) had two stalls at this year’s event which were stewarded by SRtRC staff, volunteers and ex-professional footballers. Goody bags were being given away at both stalls which contained a variety of SRtRC magazines, resources and a SRtRC badge. The stall was also giving away free team posters from the 2014/2015 season which were in high demand to the public also in high demand were pictures and autographs with SRtRC Patron and former Newcastle player Olivier Bernard and former Republic of Ireland & Middlesbrough player Curtis Fleming. Wristbands which could be purchased along with a range of styles of t-shirt were also very popular on the day.
Among the many thousands of faces that approached both stalls on the day for a chat, there were a few more familiar faces which stopped by to show their support for the campaign. Labour leadership candidates Yvette Cooper and Andy Burnham both spent time at the campaigns stalls talking to SRtRC staff, the public and posed for pictures to show their support for the campaign. Also stopping by the stall to show their support was Cleveland Police and Crime Commissioner, Barry Coppinger who has funded extensive work in the forthcoming academic year in the Middlesbrough and Cleveland area.
Show Racism the Red Card would like to thank both UNISON and UNITE for their hospitality on the day and for all their help at the event. The campaign would also like to thank the volunteers as well as Olivier Bernard and Curtis Fleming who gave up their time to help represent the campaign. Finally, we would like to thank everyone who attended the Gala and specifically everyone who approached the stall and showed their support for the campaign.