I have a copy of the Barnsley Chronicle from that fateful day and one from later which lists the contributions made from all over the country to a fund set up to support widows and children.
|I worked down Barnsley Main Colliery from 1958-62 as an Apprentice Fitter and returned later as Assistant Engineer.
One of the old Oaks Shafts was still open - used as a pumping shaft and I went down the shaft in a kibble to check the pump in my early days as an apprentice.
I am very interested in the Oaks Explosion which seems to be now almost unknown in Barnsley. Most people think that the memorial at the top of what was Barnsley Road, now Doncaster Road, is to the people lost in the explosion whereas it is in memory of the rescuers.
Barnsley schools should teach this local history and the bravery of these men. When I was at school in Barnsley, long time ago !! There was no mention of the heroics acts which took place in our town.
The people received a pittance and when the fund was wound up I believe a large sum went to the government
Queen Victoria sent condolences to the owners of the mine for the loss of their mine !!