Respect campaign launched for this year's Durham Miners' Gala as organisers urge people to look after each other

The team behind Durham Miners’ Gala have launched a call for people to respect each other to keep it a safe and peaceful day of celebration.

Thursday, 20th June 2019, 15:30 pm
Updated Saturday, 22nd June 2019, 17:11 pm
Durham Miners Association President Alan Mardghum

The Durham Miners’ Association (DMA) is calling on everyone who attends to respect the meaning and traditions of the Big Meeting, its host city and the workers and volunteers who deliver the event.

DMA secretary Alan Mardghum said: “The Gala is and always has been a celebration of working-class life, community, and solidarity – and it is a great family day out. In that spirit, we call on everyone who attends this year’s Gala to look after each other.”

The DMA has four requests from visitors:

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- Respect the banners and their groups by helping them move through the city smoothly on the day;

- Respect the bands, by giving them support and helping them make progress through the streets;

- Respect the emergency services and the stewards, Durham Police say officers enjoy a great rapport with the crowds;

Durham Miners' Association president Alan Mardghum.

- Respect the environment, with people asked to look after the racecourse, which is provided by Durham University, and use the bins along the route and on the field.

Temporary Superintendent of Durham Police, Richard Allen, said: “We often see more than 100,000 people attend this historic event and traditionally have a very low number of arrests or trouble caused.

“The Miners’ Gala is always a great family day out and we hope everyone attending this year’s event has a good day and enjoys themselves. As always, our officers will be on hand to help anyone that needs it.”

Thousands gathered at the Durham Miners' Gala to listen to the speakers on the Racecourse Ground at a previous Big Meeting. Photo by PA.

On the day itself bands and banners will begin to gather in the Market Place from 8am.

The parade then moves down over Elvet Bridge, passes below the balcony of the County Hotel, along to the Old Racecourse by the River Wear, where the speeches will begin at 1pm.

The Miners’ Festival Service will begin in Durham Cathedral at 3pm.