A true forced prostitution story – Miner’s Wife, Police Whore is an unflinching piece of writing which tells an untold story from the Great Strike of 1964; a story of the hidden abuse of a community, and of one woman in particular. Ruthie Tudor was a miner’s wife – fully loyal to the strike – who was forced through poverty and circumstance to become a ‘collaborator’ with the oppressors. From going topless in a ‘police’ pub after hours, to selling herself for sex, the story illustrates well the desperation, and the lasting repercussions of a bleak period in our history.
The story is told with candour and spirit; a testament to a sorrowful time, and a form of exploitation that was never properly reported, if it was reported at all. A true journey into a sexual hell told by the woman who lived it.
I looked across the bar, at all the red angry faces. Many of them had been drinking all day. But this is what they had come for. This is what they had come to see; a miner’s wife forced to take her top off for the enemy. A wife forced to degrade herself to feed her family. That Inspector’s voice rang in my head, his words harsh but not without truth; ‘we’re the fucking Masters now.’
I looked at them and wondered how we had all come to this. Was it for this that we had worked and struggled all our lives, to be driven to this kind of desperation? I left the bar and moved into the back. The pub doors were locked, it was nearly midnight. I could hear them singing that ‘get your tits out’ song.
I looked at Jimmy; he didn’t like it any more than I did. I was embarrassed that a friend should have to see me doing this. To give him his due, he looked away while I removed my top and bra. Phil, my husband, just thought I was doing my usual bar job with a bit of after-hours overtime. He’d go insane if he knew. But I couldn’t think of him right then. Too upsetting. I listened to them singing. It was getting louder. Some were starting to chant. ‘Tits out, tits out, tits out…’
Jimmy whispers, ‘Best get in there Ruthie, don’t worry pet.’ He gave me a tight little smile. He hated this, but the police have him over a barrel as well . I took a deep breath and walked into the light.
I felt like I was trapped in a zoo, with all the animals on the outside looking in.
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