Miners’ Gala

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VILLAGERS were filled with mixed emotions today as they headed for the Durham Miners’ Gala – on the 25th anniversary of their pit shutting.

More than 200 Horden residents headed to Durham City for the 127th “Big Meeting”.

For Bob Dowson, 57, it was a poignant day. He has been the village banner secretary of the Horden Banner committee ever since the Colliery closed in 1986.

The ex-pit electrician and shaft man said: “It is sad that the pit closed but it is great that the miners’ gala is still going strong.”

The villagers first marched through Horden behind Nelson Brass band from east Lancashire, who had travelled since 3am to get to Horden, before boarding buses for Durham.

After a full day at the Gala, the procession was due to return to Horden where the band would play Gresford – the miners’ hymn – before Bob paid tribute to them for their support.

l See Monday’s Mail for more coverage of the Durham Miners’ Gala.

l See Mail2 gor gala picture memories.