Children of mine workers from Wales holiday in Irish homes as industrial action in the British coal industry continues.
Thirteen year old Amanda Roberts from Pontypridd in Wales is the daughter of a striking mine worker and one of 52 children coming to the end of a week of holiday fun in Ireland. The visiting children stayed with families in Dublin and Monaghan.
Amanda’s father works at the Trelewys Frifts coal pit and since the miners' strike began she has endured a lot of hardship. However,
Since, you know, we’ve had a holiday in Ireland it’s been good.
Other children describe conditions at home as desperate and say they are reliant on weekly food parcels.
Following a fundraising visit to Ireland by striking miners' wives, support for the strike has been growing. Many of the families hosting the children have themselves been hit by unemployment.
The holiday trip to Ireland was arranged by the Dublin Council of Trade Unions, and the Liam Whelan Youth Club in Cabra organised activities for the children. Club chairman Tommy Fulham is adamant the support is not going to end there. He wants all major cities in Ireland to host the children of striking British miners indefinitely until the strike is won.
We’re going to provide a fund now just to get the children over, just to provide passage, it won’t be a holiday as such, it will be passage, a roof over their heads until such time as the miners triumph.
A further 50 children will be arriving from Wales and South Yorkshire for a week’s holiday and they will be staying with families in Tallaght and Wexford.
An RTÉ News report broadcast on 16 August 1984. The reporter is Brian O’Connell.