Over two decades after the last pit closed in the Durham coalfield the Miners Gala or Big Meeting as it is known locally remains as popular as ever with over 200,000 people expected to attend the event this year.
The gala forms part of the culture and heritage of the area and represents the communal values of the North East of England. The gala sees traditional colliery brass bands march through the city ahead of their respective pit banners and pausing to play outside the County Hotel building where union leaders, invited guests and dignitaries gather before then continuing to the racecourse area for a day of entertainment and speeches.
Beginning in 1871 the gala is the biggest trade union event in Europe.
Images (c) Ian Forsyth 2017 / Getty Images
See more of my work in the galleries & blog at Room 2850
All rights reserved.
No usage without arrangement.