Archived Extracts

Press page sent by Trev Ashmore reports two incidents of coal stealing, while unfortunately missing earlier column headed with HUTHWAITE MINERS SHARE STRIKE PAY, which notes however reason for hardship.

Free Press 1926.


Coal stealing from an outcrop seam in a field at Teversal belonging to Elliott Gower, of Huthwaite, was the charge made against ten Huthwaite miners. They were Aaron Betts, 27 Club Street;   John Dobbs, 24 Swan Yard;   Richard Bonser, 49 Sherwood Street;   William Coleman, 6 Blackwell Road;   William Stone, 30 Newcastle Street;   Reginald Oswald, 90 Main Street;   Harry Burton, 42 Barker Street;   Harry Thompson, 61 Simpson's Yard;   Harold Ford 63 New Street;   Thomas Simmonds, 115 Main Street;   The amount that they were charged with stealing was two tons, valued at £3.

Benjamin Pickering, employed by Gower as foreman at the outcrop, said that on the night of Ag, 27th after informing the police this coal had been stolen from the outcrop, he visited the spot with police officers and heard men talking and filling bags with coal. The officers made a raid and the men ran away, leaving behind them a number of filled and partly filled bags.

Cross examined by Mr. E.S.B. Hopkin, who defended, Pickering said that the field containing the outcrop seam belonged to Gower, but he did not know how owned the seam itself.

P.c. Hall, Sheffield and Weston and Sergt. Robinson corroborated Pickering's evidence.

For the defence, Mr Hopkin said that the defendants on that night, with the exception of Simmonds, went to the outcrop in the hope of being given quantities of coal by the men who were working there. They did not go with a concerted intent, but went separately. Betts, Dobbs and bonser admitted packing up some coal, Coleman, Stoke, Burton and Thompson were present but took no coal, Oswald and Ford both turned back before they arrived at the outcrop, and Simmonds was not there at all.

Thomas A. Gelsthorpe,told the magistrates that Simmonds was in his company throughout the same night waiting for the raiders in his greenhouse.

Betts, Dobbs and Bonsor were fined 5s. each, Coleman, Stone, Thompson and Burton 3s. 6d. each, and the charges against Oswald, Ford and Simmonds were dismissed, the Chairman (Mr. G.G. Bonsor) remarking that the Bench had decided to treat the defendants leniently because of their present difficult situation.


A ton of coal stolen from a store in Mycroft's field, Fulwood, Sutton, led to the apprehension of eleven men who shared the coal between them. They all admitted the offence and were:- John Thomas Turton, 36 Hardwick Street;   George Lee, 8 Sandy's Row;   John Stringfellow, Sandy's Row;   G. Goodwin, Alfreton Road;   William and Bert Twigg, Alfreton Road;   George Hurt, The Row, Fulwood;   William Booth and Albert Keeton, Old Yard, Fulwood;   George Froggatt and Harold Bacon, The Row, Fulwood.

P.c. Hart said that on August 27th. he had occasion to stop some men on Alfreton Road, and they could not give a satisfactory account of how they got the coal which they were leading on bicycles. Others were stopped taking away the coal in barrows. It was subsequently found that the coal had come from an outcrop near Bloomer Wood.

Ernest Cotes, of Kirkby, said he was employed on the outcrop, owned by Mr. Farnsworth. The day before the thefts he left eight tons of coal in the stall, and when he returned there were three or four tons missing.

The missing coal was valued at 30s. Each defendant was fined 5s. and Stringfellow, who did not appear, 10s.

Written 20 Nov 11 Revised 20 Nov 11 © by Gary Elliott