Tales of the Unexpected - Page 1
1960's - At Bentinck Colliery a pony was hurt down the pit and was brought out to the surface for treatment and convalescence. The Ganger who was in charge of the pony was teased greatly, by the other Gangers, who told him that the pony was going to be put down at the knackers yard and made into glue!
He was most upset and believed them and so he took the pony home with him in order to protect it, of course, fortunately, it was only a gag.
1960s - Thoresby Colliery. Whilst attempting to turn a pony round near the loader gate lip the ganger and another crossed the conveyor signal bell wires to stop the belt and there would be a continuous ringing sound at the transfer point and the attendant after stopping the belt would wait until the ringing stopped before starting the belt up again. Whilst the pony was being turned in the restricted space having got its front legs on the conveyor the twisted bell wires came loose and the ringing stopped and the attendant assuming all was well started the conveyor moving again. Unfortunately when the belt started the pony panicked, reared up, spun round and raced under the 6 feet high ripping lip and blindly ran through the packhole and then into the gobbing where it appeared to get firmly wedged in a tight space. The ganger and others by now were thinking how to get the pony to reverse and turn it round but by now the Deputy had appeared on the scene and after a careful look at the situation declared that the roof appeared to be unsafe and nobody was to go into the gobbing. The pony was abandoned no doubt taking a while to die but men's lives were more valuable. (story related by Tom Hurt).
1981 - Again at Bentinck Colliery a miner who's nick name was ‘Fluke’ took a lurcher pup down the pit, on the night shift, unknown to all, to 76's Black Shale Panel. It was only part way through the shift when the other members of the packing team noticed that there was a strange noise and then found out that it was the puppy barking. It transpired that ‘Fluke’ was quite happily throwing small stones in the Loader Gate Pack Hole for the dog to retrieve. Everyone was flabbergasted and wondered how on earth he had managed to smuggle the dog into the pit in the first place. - Could this have been classified as ‘Contraband’?