On October 31 2016 Amber Rudd, home secretary, made an announcement that sent shockwaves through the mining community – there was to be no enquiry into the violent policing at the Battle of Orgreave.
“We were flabbergasted,” said Joe Rollin, Unite organiser and chairperson for the Orgreave Truth and Justice Campaign.
“We had had meetings with Amber Rudd, she had made all the right noises and we really thought that we were getting the enquiry that the mining community deserves,” he added.
But for Joe the hardest pill to swallow was how drastically the home secretary missed the point.
“She actually said ‘well no one died so there’s no need to enquire’. Why does there need to be a death for an enquiry,” said Joe.
For Joe what happened at Orgreave in 1984 is just too important to just let lie.
“In December we started planning our biggest and nosiest demonstration to date,” Joe added.
On Monday March 13 more than 300 Orgreave supporters, National Union of Mine Workers and Unite community members will descend on the Home Office to make some noise and show Amber Rudd that they won’t be silenced.
“We want to send a clear message to the home secretary and the Tories that we aren’t going away and that our fight for the truth will go on,” said Joe.
South Yorkshire police said they would welcome an inquiry, as did the police and crime commissioner and the Labour Party.
“The only people who didn’t want an investigation were the Tories and that’s because Margaret Thatcher and the Tories were ultimately responsible for brutal police behaviour during the miners’ strike,” said Joe.
Joe, along with ex-miners and Orgreave supporters are calling for people to join the demonstration and make some noise for Orgreave.
“We want people to join us. Bang pots and pans, blow whistles, sound horns and shout for justice,” said Joe.
There will be a Samba band and speeches from Andy Burnham MP, trade union leaders, Sheila Coleman community coordinator and Hillsborough campaigner, John Dunn community activist and ex miner and Joe will be comparing.
It is a matter of principal for the mining community and they can’t and won’t rest until they get an enquiry.
“Amber Rudd’s shameful refusal to hold an inquiry into Orgreave was a bitter blow to those seeking truth and justice and to those her government gave false hope to. Today is about showing the Conservative government that working class families do not give up on justice and that the fight for the truth will go on,” said Len McCluskey, Unite general secretary.
“The injustice to ordinary working men and women cannot go unanswered and Unite will stand in solidarity with those whose questions this government has ignored, denying them the answers they need to heal and rebuild their communities,” he added.