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Mining Memorials in Scotland
Jim Henry
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Memorials - Photographs - Page 36

Bothwell Castle Miners Wildflower Garden

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Blantyre Road and B7071 Uddingston Road, Bothwell, South Lanarkshire

Bothwell Garden

Bothwell Castle Colliery Hutch

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Corner of Fallside Road, and Main Street, Bothwell, South Lanarkshire

Sign

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Robert Smillie Memorial Park

Larkhall, South Lanark

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Robert Smillie Memorial Primary School

Robert Smillie Memorial Primary School, Glen Avenue, Larkhall, South Lanark

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Robert Smillie (17 March 1857 – 16 February 1940) was a trade unionist and Labour Party politician in Great Britain, especially Scotland. He was a leader of the coal miners, and played a central role in moving support from the miners away from the Liberal Party to the Labour Party. He had a firm commitment to socialism as an ideal, and militancy as a tactic.

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Smillie became secretary of the Larkhall Miners' Association in 1885 after presiding over a mass meeting which ended in its formation and when the county federation was formed he became its president in 1893. He became the president of the Scottish Miners' Federation in 1894. Employers in a number of districts demanded wage reductions resulting in strikes. Following a special conference of the Miners Federation of Great Britain a ballot was taken and the strike that followed lasted from June to October 1894. Controversy arose between Smillie and Chisholm Robertson which came to head in 1900 with a debate at Glasgow Trades Council which Smillie won. Strikes left the Scottish miners in a greatly weakened position, they suffered further wage cuts in 1895 and 1896, in 1897 less than twenty per cent of the workers were organised.

A founder member of the Scottish Labour Party in 1888 and of the Independent Labour Party in 1893, Smillie was a close associate of Keir Hardie during their early careers and remained a friend until Hardie's death. He campaigned for Hardie in many of his election contests, including the first in 1888; and Smillie stood for parliament on seven occasions between 1894 and 1910. Later, he could have had the nomination for winnable seats in Glasgow but chose to remain with his work for the miners.

His early commitment to socialism was moderate, Lib-Labs were predominant in the leadership however this clashed with the miners political views. Nevertheless, Smillie's qualities of leadership brought him to the forefront of the miners' struggles, and with the growth of militancy amongst certain sections, opinion changed to his favour.

More on Wikipedia

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Shotts

Dykehead Cross, Station Road, Shotts, North Lanarkshire

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The large notice board gives the tie in to coalmining

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The Mining Memorial, you can see how close it is to the statute dedicated to the steel / iron industry


The Mining Memorial is About 3ft x 3ft 

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