Dozens of ex-miners have arrived at a club in Easington Colliery, with many of them saying they were there to celebrate Baroness Thatcher’s death.
Hundreds are expected to attend the event, which will also commemorate the end of mining in the town.
Dave Douglass, who worked at Doncaster coalfield for 35 years, said he was there to mourn her birth.
“She wanted to smash the union and sell off whatever was profitable,” he said.
“I’m here to mourn her birth as she represents the system that we are all still suffering under.
“I’m also here to commemorate the loss of this pit and every pit in Great Britain.
“If people say it’s in bad taste to do this, I would say it was in bad taste when miners were killed on the picket lines.
“I have been watching so much psychotic drivel on the news this morning talking about the names of each horse in the funeral. It’s the kind of stage-managed stuff we see in North Korea.”
A banner called “Thatcher’s Prayer” was unveiled and held up outside the club as the ex-miners processed in.
It said: “Where there are pits may we bring destruction.
“Where there are communities may we bring strife.
“Where there is work may we bring unemployment.
“Where there is hope may we bring despair.”
Durham Miners Association general secretary David Hopper said they were there for a party and to have a “good knees-up”.
Wearing a T-shirt with “A generation of trade unionists will dance on Thatcher’s grave” written on it, he said she made an incessant attack on mining communities.
“Everyone who is here from Durham Miners is here to celebrate her death and everyone we have invited is here to celebrate her death,” he said.
“I ignore people who say it’s in bad taste, it was in bad taste what she did in our communities.
“She destroyed our jobs, our communities, our youth’s future and made an incessant attack on miners in their communities.
“Cameron is Thatcher’s child and is hammering our communities now.
“He’s attacking our disabled and sick miners and bringing in the bedroom tax which is a general attack on the working class.
“We are here for a party and a good knees-up. We have the food on, the drink on and the entertainment on.”