10 Nov 2012

Waihi mine strike centenary marked

7:22 am on 10 November 2012

The centenary of the Waihi Gold Mine strike during which a miner was killed is being commemorated in the Hauraki District town over the weekend.

During the bitter six-month dispute, striking miner Fred Evans was kicked and beaten as strike-breakers and police fought unionists on 12 November 1912.

Historian Mark Derbysays although the strike subsequently collapsed it was very significant as it led directly to the formation of the Labour Party.

Several of the figures active in the Waihi strike including Michael Joseph Savage, Bob Semple and Paddy Webb entered Parliament in the first Labour Government in 1935 and held office for a number of years.