A hundred years ago October 19, 1920 Archives

From the Archives (October 19, 1920): The Coal Strike(From an editorial)

The threatened strike of the miners in Britain has now began. On the merits of the miners’ claims, the non-recognition of which has resulted in the present disastrous strike, we do not now propose to enter. We shall we be content with touching briefly the position taken up by the Government and the miners respectively. The Government’s case is that at the present level of coal prices and wages of miners, many of the mines could just only manage without closing down and that therefore no rise in wages or reduction in prices was justifiable or possible. The Government strengthened their position with statistics which tended to show that, far from production increasing or at least keeping pace with rise in wages, it had fallen concurrently with such rise. The miners, on the other hand, at first contended that there must be effected a reduction in prices by 14s.2d per ton and, subsequently, shifting their ground, asked for a 2s. increase in wages. The miners are consumers as well as producers of coal and they are interested as much in getting coal prices decreased as in getting miners’ wages increased; and hence their first request to get coal prices reduced as the cost of living was high.

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