Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell has described Sir Winston Churchill as a "villain" for his role in dealing with striking miners in Wales when he was Minister of the Interior in 1910.

In an interview with Politico's website, Mr. McDonnell was asked, "Winston Churchill, hero or villain?"

After a brief pause for thought he answered: "Tonypandy – villain".

He referred to Churchill's role in a strike by miners in the Rhondda Valley, Tonypandy in November 1910.

Striking miners in South Wales in 1910
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Striking miners in South Wales in 1910

The initial peaceful strike had become more unpleasant when the strikers discovered that the mine owners intended to bring workers from outside the area to operate the colliery.

Winston Churchill as Minister of the Interior in 1910
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Winston Churchill as Minister of the Interior in 1910

The local authorities asked the Ministry of Interior for help, and Churchill finally agreed to send 200 police officers and a troop squad.



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On the night of November 8, 1910, the situation worsened and battles occurred in which a miner died and hundreds of people were injured.

Police officers dispatched to Tonypandy during miners & # 39; Strike of 1910
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During the miners' strike of 1910, police officers were transferred to Tonypandy

In response to comments made by Mr. McDonnell Churchill's grandson, Tory MP Sir Nicholas Soames told the Daily Telegraph:

"Honestly, it's a very silly and stupid thing that was said to win publicity.

"I think my grandfather's call can withstand a public relations attack emanating from a third-grade third party, Poundland Lenin, I do not think he's going to shake the world."

Churchill led a coalition government in World War II
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Churchill led a coalition government in World War II

The reputation of the British warlord has been increasingly challenged in recent years.

The man, who was voted Britain's biggest Brit in a 2002 BBC poll, was accused of being a racist and misogynist.

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