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Miner victory! Plaque for activist Mark Ashton is unveiled

Political activist founded the Lesbian and Gays Support the Miners group in 1984, which featured in the hit film Pride

30 May, 2017 — By William McLennan

Russell Tovey and Mike Jackson at the unveiling

A MEMORIAL plaque celebrating the life of Mark Ashton – the political activist who founded the Lesbian and Gays Support the Miners (LGSM) in 1984 – has been installed above a bookshop in King’s Cross.

The group’s role in supporting striking Welsh miners was made into hit feature film Pride in 2014.

The plaque Mark Ashton is unveiled

Mr Ashton, who had contracted HIV, died in 1987.

Other members of the LGSM were joined by actor Russell Tovey at the plaque unveiling at Gay’s the Word bookshop in Marchmont Street on Friday on what would have been Mr Ashton’s 56 birthday.

Mike Jackson, a founding member of the LGSM, set up a crowdfunding drive to pay for the plaque said: “To this day, Mark’s loss remains deeply felt by so many family members and friends. Driven, principled and charismatic, Mark would have achieved so much more if he had not died so young.”

Wearing a pink shirt beneath his ceremonial chains, it was one of the first public engagements attended by the new mayor of Camden, Councillor Richard Cotton.

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