The Big A Debate – Pre Debate Interviews

Wednesday 3rd of March 2010 saw the Big A Debate take place at the Potteries Museum Hanley. Some high profile names had agreed to be on the Panel and PitsnPots caught up with them before the event.

As well as the video’s we also have photographs and a full audio transcript on the way.

(*Please note the video shown here is fairly low quality due to a technical issue we had importing it. The HD versions will be available soon via youtube and will replace these videos.).

The Big A Debate – A Massive Success

AUDIO & VIDEO NOW ONLINE

The Big A debate at Hanley’s Forum Theatre last night [Wednesday] was a huge success and a complete sell out.

The organisers Alan & Cheryl Gerrard of the Art Bay Gallery in Fenton should feel enormously proud of their achievements and we hope to see many more independently organised events like this.

350 people packed into the Forum Theatre and witnessed a lively, at times angry, passionate and articulate debate that was littered with examples with traditional Potteries humour.

Ex miners from areas such as Durham, Nottingham, Derbyshire and Salford were in attendance.

Most of their anger was vented at Edwina Currie and she should be given credit for representing the right wing and for putting up with the tongue in cheek comments particularly those that alluded to her ‘relationship’ with John Major.

Have a look at our live feed of the night as we covered it live on ‘Cover It Live’.

Scott Sharman came along to the Big A Debate to take some pictures for us, they can be seen over on his Flickr page

We also captured some audio interviews with the audience as they were leaving the debate some you will know and some you won’t so have a listen.

Big A Debate – Your Last Chance!

The last few tickets are available for sale for tomorrow’s Big A debate on the miners strike of the 80′s.

Tomorrow evening sees a charity “Question Time” style debate discussing The Strike, but, more importantly, its national legacy. This takes place at The Forum Theatre, in Hanley, between 7.00 – 9.30pm (as an aside, the 3rd marks the exact 25th anniversary of the formal ending of The Strike).

Panellists include: George Galloway MP, Edwina Currie, the film director Ken Loach (Kes, Cathy Come Home), Mark Fisher MP and Mike Nattrass MEP and we’re accepting questions now to be presented to the panel on the evening.

This event and is to be filmed and will also be covered on Pits n Pots using the cover it live software that was used so successfully to cover the EDL rally.

Listen to the Audio Interview below with Alan Gerrard one of the event organisers.

The Big A Debate

In a city where almost every family was touched by the miners strike back in 1984 I am constantly surprised at how little is spoken of it even now some 25 years later.

Alan Gerrard of Theartbay Gallery is hoping that by holding a question Time style debate in the city in 2 weeks time he can get people to discuss the legacy of the miners strike and how it affects the way we live today.

Speaking to Alan about the event he said, ‘Regardless of your political and economic beliefs, The Miners’ Strike of 1984 – 1985 was akin to a British Civil War.

With the charismatic, but stubborn, hard line socialism of Arthur Scargill of The NUM taking on the equally intransigent free market economics of, Prime Minister, Margaret Thatcher, a battle ensued which was to affect millions of UK citizens, both directly and indirectly.’

He continued, ‘For instance, did the defeat of the miners signal a change in governmental attitudes towards freedom of speech? Has the general level of voter apathy increased since the Miners’ Strike? If we’d have supported our infrastructure more would we be paying the energy prices we do at present? Or did the attitude of blue collar workers and their unions in nationalised industries lie at the heart of the UK economy’s high inflation and inefficiency at the time? Did unions need a reality check? Ultimately, is Britain a better or worse place for The Miners’ Strike? Was Thatcher right? Was Scargill right?’

The Big A “Question Time” Debate is a charity event exploring The Miners’ Strike, its legacy and the issues that have lay open but unapproached for 25 years. A platform to express opinions about this significant period in Britain’s recent past – the effects of which are still felt today. A chance to learn from the benefit of hindsight.

Panellists include: world renowned film director Ken Loach, George Galloway MP, former South Derbyshire MP, Edwina Currie, Mark Fisher MP, Mike Nattrass MEP and David Hencke, Westminster Correspondent for The Guardian.

As this event is to have a “Question Time” theme, members of the audience may like to send in their questions to info@theartbay.co.uk for possible discussion on the night. Like “Question Time” itself, the panellists won’t have any prior knowledge of the questions to be put to them.

There are a number of tickets still available for the event which can be purchased on-line or by calling in at the Artbay Gallery in Fenton.

Pits n Pots are delighted to be supporting The Artbay Gallery for this event and will be reporting from the event on the night.

Miners’ Strike Question Time – In Stoke-on-Trent, Wed 3rd March

Between February 26th and March 5th, there’s a programme of events to commemorate The Miners’ Strike of 1984 – 1985 and celebrate The Mining Industry.

One of the events is a charity “Question Time” style debate discussing The Strike, but, more importantly, its national legacy. This takes place at The Forum Theatre, in Hanley, on the evening of Wednesday 3rd March 7.00 – 9.30pm (as an aside, the 3rd marks the exact 25th anniversary of the formal ending of The Strike).

Panellists include: George Galloway MP, Edwina Currie, the film director Ken Loach (Kes, Cathy Come Home), Mark Fisher MP and Mike Nattrass MEP and we’re accepting questions now to be presented to the panel on the evening.

This event and is to be filmed, with a BBC Midlands Today crew in attendance, professional PA system and a wireless microphone system to allow audience participation.

Finally, if you have a question you would like the panel to address, either directly or indirectly linked to The Miners’ Strike and/or its legacy, you might like to send it in for airing on the night. Do note, however, that the questioner must be in attendance on the night.

Pits’n’Pots will be in attendance on the night to conduct interviews with the organisers and the panel of guests.

Tickets are priced at just £5 [£3 concessions]

For tickets or information contact:

Alan Gerrard

Theartbay Gallery

01782 844222