Remembering Miners' Strike 35 years on: Feelings still running high after more than three decades
It lasted almost exactly a year and caused divisions within communities, even within families, that have not healed to this day.
More than half the country's 187,000 miners left work in what was the biggest industrial dispute in post-war Britain.
The ill-feeling between striking and non-striking miners would last lifetimes in some cases.
For decades, coal mining in the UK was the backbone of the economy, not least in the North East, employing hundreds of thousands of people.
In 1981 the country was producing 128million tonnes of coal a year. Today only a handful of pits remain. Ironically, the strike was about pit closures.
The two sides were the Government and the National Union of Mineworkers, headed respectively by Margaret Thatcher and Arthur Scargill; political polar opposites but equally committed.
Maureen Williams said: “My dad worked 43 years down the pit, mostly Monkwearmouth in Sunderland. Although it’s been 13 years since we lost him, I’m as proud now as I was then to call him Dad and I’m proud to be a pit man’s daughter.
Kevin Leary said: “The miners lost a lot of support using flying pickets and not having a (national) ballot.
“Scargill deliberately used communist Kent branch to come out, then abused the decency of union members to fight a political battle he was never going to win.”
Gary Duncan said: “The miners were heroes! How many sections of the working class have taken on the government in such a militant style? Absolute legends every one of them.”
David Almond asked: “Did the miners HAVE to go on strike? Did the government or police close the gates so the well paid workers couldn’t get in?This needs to be left from where it came.”
Rob Shields said: “If it wasn't for the Nottingham and pit deputy scabs, the miners would have won.”