PONTARDAWE Arts Centre is set to mark 35 years since the end of the miners' strike with a series of events.

The miners' strike was a defining moment in our history which saw miners across the country walk out on strike against Tory Government plans to impose a massive programme of pit closures.

They saw it as the first step to a complete rundown of the mining industry.

Nobody knew that day that the battle between the union and the Government would last an entire year.

As an industrial dispute it was unprecedented, rarely since has any battle left such an indelible mark on communities whose livelihoods depended on one major employer.

Thirty five years after the great miners’ strike of 1984-85 its effects still reverberate. Yet while the strike divided the nation, families and friends, those miners and their families continue to be regarded in high esteem across communities for their courageous fight to save their jobs and livelihoods.

To commemorate this major industrial dispute that had such a social and economic impact on families and local communities, two events are to be held at Pontardawe Arts Centre on Thursday 5th March.

The first at 12.00pm featuring local school children and then at 6pm, Jeremy Miles AM will Chair a panel of former miners and NUM trade unionists who will share their personal memories and experiences of this major industrial dispute.

Speakers include former MP for Swansea East and member of the Women’s Support Group Sian James, Eric Davies former NUM Agent, Abernant Miner Wayne Pedrick, Lyn Harper a former NUM Official and Christine Powell who was treasurer of the Swansea, Neath and Dulais Valleys Miners Support group.

There will also be a week-long display of artefacts from the South Wales Miners Library to be displayed at the Arts Centre.

Pontardawe Arts Centre are also looking for people to record their personal memories of the Miner’s strike. Were you a miner at the time? Were you the wife/girlfriend, child, friend or family member of a miner caught up in the strike? They are particularly interested in hearing tales from a family perspective. So if you have a story to tell pop along to the Arts Centre between 2pm and 6pm on Thursday, March 5 for your stories to be recorded.