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Calendar
The Decline Of The Industry Continued
After Nationalisation 1947

Bk5
Chimneys
1971 1972
1974
1975

1974 - Pages   1    2    3 

1974 - Page 1


Salaries at March 1974

Management and Technical Grades

Grade Minimum Maximum  
Senior M and T £5,745 £6,845 included Production Managers
M and T 1 ££5,170 £6,070 included Managers
M and T 2 £4,655 £5,455 included Deputy Managers
M and T 3 £4,160 £4,935 included Undermanagers
M and T 4 £3,735 ££4,470 included Surveyors
M and T 5 £3,255 £3,920 included Assistant Undermanagers
M and T 6 £2,845 x £105 £3,420 included Assistant Surveyors
M and T 7 £2,345 x £90 £2,885 Junior posts

 


Holiday on New Years Day for the first time

For the first time a Public holiday was granted in England and Wales for New Years Day 1974. It had always been a traditional holiday in Scotland.


Another 3 Day Week Due To The Miners’ Strike

On 2nd January 1974 the 3 day week was introduced to most firms due to the miners’ strike, by Prime Minister Edward Heath (Conservative).

He quoted 'who governs Britain?' He was to find out.

Secretary of State for Energy, Peter Carrington (Con) 8th Jan 1974-Mar 1974.


New Explosive Introduced

Nobel Penobel One a new design of P4/P5 explosive was issued in early 1974 following growing demand for a single charge per hole, 1¼” dia in 18oz, 24oz and 30oz units. Penobel 2 that was a P4/P5 unit charge in cartridge form for development work in harder coal and stone headings, 1¼” x 6oz, 8oz and 1 7/16” x 6oz and 8oz, under the Coal Mines (Explosives) Regulations, 1961. The photograph shows bobbins of powder in a lockable case made out of old conveyor belting and ‘powder monkeys’, men collecting powder at the distribution store for carrying inbye to the face or heading.

They were paid 1s (5p) each time.


Walk Out At Bilsthorpe

400 men on the dayshift at Bilsthorpe (Nottinghamshire) walked out on 8th February after members of NACODS union reversed an earlier decision not to travel in the shaft when members of the management union BACM were operating the winding gear.


Winding at Ollerton

Winder at Williamthorpe


Another National Strike

A further National Strike occurred, lasting from 11th February to 11th March 1974. This time the Deputies NACODS union withheld their labour and Management staff BACM alone kept the pits open on safety cover only. This meant manning the boilers to produce steam for winding, banksmen duties, carrying out shaft examinations, onsetting, pumping, district and roadway inspections, paddy driving, booster fan readings every half hour, checking auxiliary fans, methane gas pump, lamp cabin duties, main surface fan readings, power house duties, compressors, security etc, etc.


Heath Government Ousted

A General election was called and a Labour Government returned to power from March 1974 until 1979. The miners had toppled Edward Heath (Con) PM. Harold Wilson was elected Prime Minister again. However he resigned suddenly in 1976 and James Callaghan succeeded as Prime Minister 1976-1979.From June 1970 to March 1974 the Conservative Government had closed 26 pits.

Labour Government Takes Over

Harold Wilson will be remembered for his famous quote after devaluing the £. He said ‘the pound in your pocket is just the same’. The number of pits closed during his two terms of office amounted to 253.
Secretary of State for Energy, Eric Varley (Lab) 5th Mar 1974-1975. Secretary of State for Trade, Peter Shore (Lab) 5th Mar 1974-1979. Secretary of State for Industry, Tony Benn (Lab) 5th Mar 1974-1975.

Pay Increases

Work resumed following a negotiated settlement. Subsequent to a report on miners’ pay by the Pay Board, again massive pay increases were awarded plus other concessions, as in the previous strike. Face workers were offered £45 per week. A lump sum payment of £500 on retirement was granted and at 51 years of age for incapacity.


Joe Gormley The President Of The NUM Imposed A Levy Once More
As He Had Done After The 1972 Strike. Most Paid It Without A Fuss.


Norms Introduced

Norms were introduced later for each coalface. These were theoretical tasks and objectives to be achieved to produce the planned amount of coal from a coal face or amount of ripping required.


Spontaneous Combustion

In 1972 and 1974 strikes, control of spontaneous combustion continued in South Derbyshire at Rawdon, Measham, Donisthorpe and Cadley Hill in Little, Main, Woodfield, Stockings, Eureka, Stanhope and Kilburn seams.


Norman Siddall

Norman Siddall (3655) was appointed Deputy Chairman of the NCB. John H Northard (4954), was appointed Director, North Derbyshire Area (1973-1982). Albert Wheeler (7349) was promoted to Deputy Director. Len Harris (7388) appointed DCME, later moved to the Lodge, Doncaster 1974-1979.


Trade Union and Labour Relations Act 1974

Further legislation was passed: Trade Union and Labour Relations Act 1974; Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974, both affecting the working of the mines in North Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire and Leicestershire.


Mines Inspectorate

Senior District:

  • Dilwyn Richards (5052)

District Inspectors:

  • R (Bob) A Bower
  • EJH Nicholas
  • John W Jones (4652)
  • Robert (Bob) F Young

Inspectors:

  • Guy DR Adamson (5391)
  • John Bennington (5046)
  • Ken Couldwell (5064)
  • Geoff Weston (6269)

The Plan for Coal

The Plan for Coal was produced by the NCB and was directed to maintaining deep mined coal at 120 million tons a year and expansion of opencast working involving a heavy capital expenditure of capital investment until 1985. 40m tons of obsolete capacity and close aging pits, but maintain the level of output.

In 1956 there were 840 pits producing 210.6 million tons with 687,400 men and boys but by 1974 there were 279 pits producing 98.7 million tons with 252,000 men and boys.


Signing of Mine Plans

Following the Lofthouse disaster in 1973 a Production Instruction was issued PI 1974/1 which obliged Surveyors to examine the proposed future layout of working and make a report on a designed form, of any possible dangers or other information thought relevant and sign it, before passing it to the Colliery Manager who in turn counter-signed and this was passed on to the Deputy Chief Mining Engineer to sign after examination, who in turn passed it to the Deputy Director for his signature. Fortunately as far as I am aware no further disasters ensued, but you can imagine that the first signatory to the document being the Colliery Surveyor would have been 'pilloried and questioned in depth to say the least'. Note a further Instruction, Precautions Against Inrushes Regulations  1979, would be issued, see.


Tonnages Slumped

The tonnage at Babbington (South Nottinghamshire) slumped to 500,931 tons for the year 1973-1974, with 1,242 men. Like many other pits it was affected by the overtime ban and strike-action, and would take a while to recover. Many others never recovered.

At Teversal the annual tonnage slumped to below 400,000 tons, a target which was never achieved again.


Surface Tidiness

Tidying up the surface at all collieries in North Nottinghamshire was begun as new strategy for dirt tips and surface sites was implemented. Limestone chippings covered many pit yard areas previously occupied by flowerbeds as at Ollerton.
Household notices were introduced on plastic sheeting and colliery names became familiar with the yellow background and dark blue signs. The system spread to all Areas. Underground notices particularly for safety features and egress signs were green.


Cavity Fill

Cementitious materials (lime and clay which when mixed with water sets like stone) began to be used for filling cavities, aided by a Langley Mining pump. Of course lime is a white caustic substance made by heating limestone and when water is added to cement there is a chemical reaction causing heat.


Output for 1973-1974

  • North Derbyshire 14 pits - 6,309,178 tons with 12,628 men at an OMS of 52.5 cwts
  • North Nottinghamshire 15 pits - 9,035,370 tons with 17,380 men at 54.9 cwts
  • South Nottinghamshire 12 pits - 7,828,049 tons at 53.6 cwts and 15,377 men.

Vale of Belvoir Coalfield

Exploratory boring began for the proposed Vale of Belvoir Coalfield. I think around 80 holes were drilled.


Collieries Closed in 1974

Oxcroft Drift Mine Closed After 25 Years

Oxcroft Drift Mine (North Derbyshire) began production in 1949 and was closed in April 1974 after 25 years. It was situated at Barlborough Common. Oxcroft No1 at 534 yards deep (488m) sunk in 1899/1901 by Sir Arthur B Markham MP was located at Shuttlewood Common.

Seams worked: Top Hard at 5ft 4in (1.62m) thick 1901-14/2/1914. The High Hazel seam was developed in 1910 and worked to 1945 when adverse geological conditions forced the abandonment of the and the majority of the men were transferred to Oxcroft No3. The mine had changed hands to Oxcroft Colliery Co in 1918. About 500 men and boys were working at the time.

Oxcroft No1 Closed After 44 Years

Oxcroft No1: sunk in 1901 to Deep Hard at 534 yards (488.4m) was closed in 1945, after 44 years. Position SK 447400, 373250.

Oxcroft No3 Closed After 76 Years

Oxcroft No3: (formerly Barlborough) sunk in 1873 by the Staveley Coal and Iron Co to the Top Hard and was acquired by Oxcroft Colliery Co Ltd in 1930 and later connected to Pebley was closed in 1949 after 76 years, due to adverse conditions and water.
Seams worked continued:

  • Clowne -31/3/1902, re-opened and finished 14/5/1910, re-opened again - 24/2/1974
  • High Hazel dev 1930 and worked to 29/3/1953.

Oxcroft No5: 2 surface drifts (SK 44900, 374350) were started in 1938 but operations were suspended due to the 2nd World War. Work resumed in 1944 and connections were made to No1 and No3 collieries.
Positions:

  • No1 43/4773/347316
  • No2 43/4773/327285
  • Main Intake adit 43/4773/341330
  • Main Return adit 43/4773/363296
  • 2nd Intake adit 43/4773/372343.

A previous old Oxcroft mine worked Clowne seam and was abandoned in 1854.

Winding coal at Oxcroft No3 ceased in 1949 and coal was exited via No5 drift.
2 new surface drifts were driven to the Clowne seam and coal production began in July 1949.
All coal was sent to a refurbished Coal prep plant at Oxcroft No1.
Pithead baths were opened in 1954.
Men were gradually transferred to the new drift mine as the workings advanced using cutting machines and hand filling at the faces.
Excellent production records were achieved culminating in a record OMS of 59.5 cwts overall in April 1960.
A 250hp drive was installed in the intake drift in 1961 but was replaced by a 300hp drive in Jan 1962.
The first double ended conveyor mounted trepanner was installed in June 1966.
The highest OMS recorded was 113.6 cwts w.e. 4th October 1969.
Highest weekly output was 17,849 tons.

A Dosco dintheader introduced to develop faces performed well and more than 125 yards (114m) was achieved in a week.
The first retreat face started in Sep 1971.
Highest manpower was 810 men and boys in 1963/64, and highest output was 733,950 tons in 1968/69
.
At Oxcroft a total of 8 retreat faces were worked.
A European and World record retreat of 150 feet (46m) in a week surpassed the one held by South Nottinghamshire Area, and a further record of 206 feet (63m) in one week together with a record output of 10,078 tons from the 120 yards (110m) long, double-ended conveyor-mounted trepanner face was achieved.
Following the miners strike in early 1974 the last face began coaling on 11th March 1974.
The colliery was closed in 1974 after only 7 weeks following the start of working the last retreat panel.
Over 37m tons of coal had been produced between 1873 and 1974.
It was a wet pit and pumping operations at Oxcroft in North Derbyshire Area were continued to protect Creswell workings in North Nottinghamshire Area, and Kiveton Park in South Yorkshire Area, which lay to the dip side.
In 1987 the quantity pumped was over 22 million gallons a year at about 42 g.p.m.

Seams worked:

  • High Hazel -1953
  • Top Hard -1914
  • Clowne - Mar 1902 -29th Mar 1910 and - 1974, abandoned due to large quantities of water and weight breaks and ancient workings; Main Bright worked also.

Output and Manpower NCB: No1 Area EMD:

  • 1947: 145,379 tons, 404 men
  • 1948: 160,689 tons, 475 men
  • 1949: 187,176 tons, 515 men
  • 1950: 190,103 tons, 519 men
  • 1951: 295,975 tons, 604 men
  • 1952: 368,440 tons, 667 men
  • 1953: 368,280 tons, 719 men
  • 1954: 398,891 tons, 740 men
  • 1955: 411,732 tons, 751 men
  • 1956: 446,382 tons, 761 men
  • 1957: 445,880 tons, 777 men
  • 1958: 476,096 tons, 799 men
  • 1959: 473,477 tons, 806 men
  • 1960: 497,161 tons, 809 men
  • 1961: 467,706 tons, 789 men
  • 1962: 422,399 tons, 793 men
  • 1963/64: 426,741 tons, 810 men
  • 1964/65: 433,894 tons, 790 men
  • 1965/66: 409,568 tons, 761 men
  • 1966/67: 478,451 tons, 730 men


North Derbyshire 1967/68: 677,965 tons, 761 men

  • 1968/69: 733,950 tons, 752 men
  • 1969/70: 707,894 tons, 730 men
  • 1970/71: 665,676 tons, 739 men
  • 1971/72: 425,869 tons, 651 men
  • 1972/73: 402,001 tons, 546 men
  • 1973/74: 251,744 tons, 384 men
  • 1974/75: 27,300 tons, 85 men. Production ceased April 1974.

Agents:

  • William Humble (1299) Agent 1907-1912
  • John T de Seyfried (3704) Agent 1912-1916
  • J Young Agent (855) 1932-1941
  • L Hardy (1280) Agent 1942-1945
  • Ben Kendall (1944) Agent 1947-1949
  • Len Gross (2351) Agent 1950-

Sub-Area Managers / Group Managers:

  • H Kirk (1511) Sub Area Manager
  • Jack A Tankard (3946) Sub Area Manager 1952-1955
  • Robert (Bob) Scott (4454) Group Manager 1956-1966
  • AW Baddeley (2543) Group Manager 1966-1967

Managers for Oxcroft:

  • William Humble (1299) 1900-1907
  • Thomas Blunt (2145) 1907-1910
  • John T de Seyfried (3704) 1910-1912 (promoted to Agent)
  • RH Verner (4006) 1912-1914 Manager and Surveyor
  • J Curley (1552) 1914-1916
  • A Guest (248) 1916-1919
  • JC Jeffrey (1869) 1919-1923
  • Alex C Moonie (810) 1923-1924
  • JC Jeffrey (1869) 1924-1925
  • J Young (855) 1925-1931 for both pits No1 and No3, transferred to No3 1931-1937 then to No1 1937- and Agent 1932- and No5 1938-
  • J Edwards (202) (No1) 1931-1935
  • Gavin Dunn (1773) No1 1931-1934
  • L Hardy No1 (1280) 1935-1937 (transferred to No3 1937-1940 (transferred to No1 for 1944
  • MW Fletcher (3111) No3 1940-
  • J Edwards (202) No1 and No5 1940-1943
  • Chas William Percival (2212) No3 1941
  • and Manager No3 1944 then for No1 and No5 1944-1945
  • GPS Withnall (2857) No3 1942-1943
  • A Sloan (3301) No1 and No5 1943-1944
  • Harry Jones (3630) No3 1944-1945
  • Harry Jones (3630) all 3 pits No1, No2, No5 now combined and renamed under Oxcroft, 1945-5/3/1952
  • George Bunting (1057) 6/3/1952-31/12/56
  • A McNeish (1653) 1/1/1957-31/1/1960
  • Harry Jones (3630) 1/2/1960-31/1/1963
  • John E Hancock (6205) 11/2/1963-1/7/1964 (promoted from Hucknall, transferred to Bramley Vale)
  • John B Howarth (5939) 1/10/1964-20/6/1966 (left to Dowty)
  • Jim Rogers (6218) 20/6/1966-1/1/1968 Agent Manager -1/2/1969
  • Charlie Hawkesley (4442) Agent/ Manager 1/2/1969-11/6/1973 (transferred to Langwith)
  • Frank G Hicken (7868) Agent Manager 11/6/1973-1974.

Deputy Managers:

  • Don Hunt (4595) 20/2/1967-1/9/1973
  • Len Edwards (7953) 1/3/1970-15/9/71 (Planning), (transferred from Glapwell, transferred to High Moor).

Undermanagers for Oxcroft:

  • AE Allberry (2514) 1902-1906
  • G Hutchinson (3262) 1903-1913
  • H Barlow (4718) 1906-1907
  • William Limb (788) 1907-1915
  • M Parrott (503 / 2) 1916-1918
  • J Brailsford 1918-1920
  • M Parrott (503 / 2) 1920-1923
  • D Trousdale 1923-1924
  • J Edwards (202) 1924-1926 (promoted to Manager No5)
  • GeorgeTaylor 1926-1927
  • TP Heslington (733) 1928-1931
  • Gavin Dunn (1773) 1929-1931 (promoted to Manager No1)
  • A Bedford 1932-1933
  • L Hardy (1280) 1933-1935 (promoted to Manager No1)
  • W Harvey (1359) 1934-1936
  • JW Cowley (1768) 1936-1938 (transferred from No3 to No5 1938-1940)
  • no Undermanager
  • G Walker (2nd) No3 1943-1945
  • no Undermanager 1945-1947
  • John Ray Hunter (4409) 1947-1949 (promoted to Manager Ireland)
  • Fred Marsden (2nd) 1949-31/7/1963
  • Len Harris (7388) 1/8/1963-1/1/1965 (promoted from Holmewood, promoted to Manager High Moor)
  • William (Bill) W Bryan (8590) 1/4/1965-1/7/1968
  • Barry E Hadfield (8781) 1/12/1967-6/5/1968 (to Canada)
  • Fred Tildesley (6778) 1/4/1968-1/4/1972
  • A A (Tony) Seal (9178) 14/10/1968-1/12/1970 (promoted to Assistant Manager)
  • JA Bruce 1/1/1969-25/6/1969
  • Charlie A Hall (6155) 11/5/1970-1974
  • Stan W Hunt (6092) 26/10/1970-13/11/1972
  • Ian G Slater (8804) 7/8/1972-1974.

Assistant Undermanagers:

  • R Atkin 26/1/1959-5/6/1961
  • Len Harris (7388) 4/9/1961-1/8/1963 (promoted to Undermanager)
  • Terry J Charlesworth 26/8/1963-13/2/1967
  • AA (Tony) Seal (9178) Assistant to Manager 10/7/1967-14/10/1968 (promoted to Undermanager)
  • JA Inger Assistant to Manager 1/4/1969-1974.

Surveyors included:

  • RH Verner
  • John Ashton
  • Jack H Milner (1811) 1953-
  • R Ball (3132) 1973-1974.

Fatal Accidents Oxcroft:

  • Walter Mills (15) run over by tubs 17/3/1906
  • No2 Anthony Lyons (50) run over by tubs 22/8/1906
  • No1 David Winwood (22) caught in a coal cutter 6/2/1907
  • Frank Church (32) injured on 8/12/1908, died from septicaemia 15/12/1908
  • Charles K Maughan (15) crushed by tubs 26/2/1912
  • Harry Needham (34) fall of roof 26/3/1913, died 8/4/1913
  • William Dean Ward (15) run over by tubs 17/6/1913
  • Josiah Hunter (37) electrocuted 7/7/1914
  • Cornelius Stephens (37) fall of roof 5/12/1916
  • Albert Edward Cross (16) run over by tubs 3/1/1917
  • Explosion of firedamp 6 April 1919, 6 died
    • Eli Hunter (35)
    • James Taylor (31)
    • John William Chappell (26)
    • George Randall (26)
    • Elisha Whitehouse (57)
    • Sam S Barker (25)
  • John Thomas Greaves (25) injured his head 17/4/1920, died 27/4/1920
  • GeorgeMorris (41) fall of roof 11/4/1928, died 15/5/1928
  • Henry Kirk (19) crushed by tubs 23/1/1929
  • Sam Stocks (27) hit his head on a girder died 22/10/1929
  • James Wild (32) fall of roof 4/11/1930
  • James William Purser (35) fall of roof 8/10/1931, died 27/10/1931
  • Edward Connelley (41) fall of roof 9/12/1932
  • Albert Alberry (42) and Sam Mellors (44) both killed by fall of roof 19/10/1933
  • Walter Colbourne (54) injured by a ringer 1/12/1933, died 2/12/1933
  • Fred Smith (27) run over by tubs 5/11/1934
  • Thomas Reynolds (37) fall of roof 22/10/1934, died 22/11/1934
  • William Pogmore (24) fall of roof 8/12/1936
  • James Henry Roberts (33) fall of roof 27/11/1935, died 27/12/1936
  • James Wright (45) fall of roof 29/1/1937
  • John Thomas Allfree (46) fall of roof 7/10/1937, died 18/2/1938
  • GeorgeShort (48) fall of roof 1/12/1938
  • Joseph Frogatt (44) fall of roof 17/8/1945
  • Harry Fockinther (53) fall of roof 2/11/1966
John Ernest Hall (51) fall of roof 22/1/1971