Britain's Civil War over Coal: An Insider's View

Britain's Civil War over Coal: An Insider's View

This book presents a first-hand account of the inner workings of the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) in its confrontation with the Tory government during the Miners’ Strike of 1984/5 that changed the face of industrial relations in the UK forever. It charts the spirited defence against mine closures and the devastating aftermath, including the privatisation of British Coal, leading inexorably to the demise of the UK coal industry.

This book is part of a series. View the full series, "Work and Employment", here.


After leaving University, David Feickert travelled the world undertaking various manual jobs and became interested in trade unions. He had enrolled for a PhD at Bradford University, UK, when he became concerned about the massive job losses likely to arise in the UK coal industry as a result of automation. He felt the need to act and became an officer at the HQ of the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM). He was at the centre of action throughout the 1984/5 strike, battling against mine closures and later, privatisation. On leaving the NUM, he went to Brussels where he spent 10 years working for the TUC, defending workers’ rights, before turning his attention to China and the urgent need to reduce fatalities in its coal mines. After a battle with cancer, David passed away on 2 July 2014.

Dr David Creedy has over 45 years of experience in coal mining, institutional and energy projects. He led a research group at the NCB’s Mining Research and Development Establishment before moving to Wardell Armstrong, an engineering consultancy. Now with Sindicatum Sustainable Resources, he manages its low-carbon energy business in China. He served as an international expert in the EU-China project on occupational safety and health (OSH) in high-risk sectors. He is a vice-chair of the UNECE group of experts on coal mine methane.

Dr Duncan France is a retired petroleum geologist. After supervising exploration projects for Elf Aquitaine, he worked as a consultant on numerous projects in Europe, the Mediterranean, North Africa, Yemen, Syria, India and Venezuela, characterising oil and gas reservoirs to improve recovery.

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ISBN: 1-5275-6768-0

ISBN13: 978-1-5275-6768-9

Release Date: 1st June 2021

Pages: 421

Price: £67.99