Diary Account of Kiveton Park pit

Dairy Account by Charles Bland.

Extracts by kind permission of Betty Quinton.

Wednesday 29 January 1930.

Arrived at pit 7.20am John Shorthouse arrived 6.55am. Had John Thomas Goodman frightened him! Left pit 5.40pm. John Thomas says he is going to put some gunpowder under our end the yard. Top end engine off road - all fours and wagons. Shunters and driver cautioned by Worthy Cope.

Thurs 30 Jan.

J Shorthouse out shunting all day on order by JT Goodman.

Sat 1 Feb 1930.

Barnsley and hazel seams stood because of no wagons, also been stood 2 hours on Friday night for wagons. Sold 50-60 stock. Turner wanted wagon list but it was not done.

Mon 3 Feb.

Mr E Hall & JT Goodman started a system of weigh men signing on & off.This will doubtless cause a fuss. Very mean on their part. Mark Blackwell signed on at 2.05pm off at 11.15pm. Me 2.10pm off 11.15pm. Both 1/4 hour short. We will be a lot wrong before weekend, I suspect. Hazel stood tomorrow. Broke the record on barnsley seam-dayshift 957 tons, afternoon 900 tons, total 1857 tons in 14 hours 20 mins, but we had 52 empty decks this afternoon which would have made another 50 tons or more.

Tue 4 Feb.

Mark sent to meet Mr Short off 10 o clock train to carry his bag for him back to the office - 100 yards - bag very small.

Thur 5 Feb.

Percy Ward had 40 stock to shunt out. made us late.

Mon 10 Feb.

Worked 10 hours - awful day. Then to crown it all we each had a letter from JT Goodman to say we must clock on before commencing work and off when finishing - rotten principle.

Tue 11 Feb.

Apparently all weekly men have to clock - Joe Cope, Worthy Cope, Percy Chapman weigh men on both banks. I expect some will get out of it by hook or crook.

Wed 12 Feb.

Joe Cope, Hy Scott, Douglas Foulds not clocked in. There's going to be some fun.

Fri 14 Feb.

Harry Turner at weigh cabin by 7.30am after wagons had been short all day. Both pits stand tomorrow. All low orders blocked, no shipping.

Thur 20 Feb.

Mr Edward hall rang down about us not reporting traffic left at night. I told him we could not be clocking and counting traffic up and going to signal box all at once. He is going to see mark about it tomorrow.

Mon 24 Feb.

JT Goodman in bed with a cold. No one any pity for him.

Wed 5 March 1930.

Barnsley seam stood again.

Thur 27 Mar.

Men have been emptying slack up hill 60. Done 18 wagons. We have been blocked up all day. Worthy & Joe Cope been with us. Joe chief shunter. Left afternoon sheft to weigh up - Hazel coal cobble and nuts. Couldn't steam loco up in afternoon, to make matters worse.

Sat 29 Mar.

Deep stood again today.

Mon 31 Mar.

Deep and Hazel seams stood this afternoon. Sold 40 wagons for tomorrow in our book, also slack empties in Ballast rd & shed rd. 12 men kept us at it filling roads with slack.

Tuesday 1 April 1930.

I asked Harry Turner to let me go early to night school, but he was afraid someone might come down. He ordered an engine out at 4.45pm. Mark had to go and get a driver and two shunters. J Hunter , A barker and Percy Ward came just to change wagons arround under deep screens. This was only done because Cope said there was to be no engines out. Shows how we work together!!

Sat 5 Apr.

Both Barnsley and Hazel seams stood.

Tue 15 Apr.

High Hazel coal and land sale now costs £1-1s-8d per ton, nuts 16/-, hards 16/-. Got weighed up well tonight. Barnsley seam stood.

Fri 25 Apr.

Arthur Frogatt brought my sick pay 15/-.

Mon 28 Apr.

Joe Bland brought my sick club pay 8/6d.

Wed 7 May 1930.

Blocked with empties all day. Albert Barber has been trying to get JT Goodman to let colliers have a tub of Hazel nuts and a tub of best hards, but nothing doing.

Thur 8 May.

Empty hard nuts again, 259 tons making a total of 510 tones down, now sold, so made a bit of room. Still blocked up empties.

Mon 12 May.

Put 40 tones of kiveton Park hards on stock and nearly everything else except hard nuts and cobbles.

Tue 13 May.

Labelled 30 Kiveton Park hards to Immingham and 1 nuts to Rev. Father Sharkley.

Thur 22 May.

Both pits stood again today, so Arnold was stood off by JT Goodman. Laurie Godfrey came on at 11.00am. we have been working at wagon list for Harry Turner, not sold much of stock.

Wed 28 May.

All blocked up today. We have left all Hazel and Cobbles for tomorrows day shift to weigh up. wehave just kept pit going with a few stands. No Hazel coal or Cobbles have been weighed today. We have over 150 slack on stock. We have weighed all deep coal, but left all Hazel. Arnold stood off again.

Thur 29 May.

Both pits stood again today. Day shift got a wagon off to end road. Harry Elston (LNER) and I put 20 cu up Hazel Cobble road and they forgot to take chain off. Some empties came afterwards and our engine came from the top end and ran through the points. This chap put empties in speedy 1st wagon went up straight, rest went up Hazel Cobbles road. Percy Ward, Bob Bennell, mark Blackwell and me ot it on the road again. The wagon was an LNE Woodhouse.

Wedneday 4 June 1930.

Not been well all weekend but went back to work. John Shorthouse took my doctors note to Edward Hall who refused to accept it. Had pain all day.

Sat 7 jun.

Both pits stood. Joe Cope and some other men have been measuring up for new head gear in Barnsley seam.

Tue 17 Jun.

We had to send for Wm Booth again Laurie Godfrey came on at 11am. We have sent 324 Taylors 11 Manchesters 9 Nunnery and some Kitsons. Got up to 976 on wagon list.

Mon 23 Jun.

We had a right busy night. We had to weight all Hazel up because they are putting a new rope on 20 level tomorrow and Wednesday. Absolutely blocked up with stock. men coming in to empty nuts and slack tomorrow morning.

Thur 26 Jun.

We got shut of a bit of stock while pits have been stood. We are now blocked up with empties. Long creeper at Barnsley seam broke at 2.30pm so we were making tons of slack and nuts all afternoon. we filled all roads on branch with stock all afternoon. Will be a good mess tomorrow.

Tuesday 8 july 1930.

Not much sale for coal now. we don't want anymore orders which will cause us to work over on 3 days per week. kohn Shorthouse says they are refusing orders for hards. Both pits stood again.

Fri 18 Jul.

Good lot of orders in today. Last day before Kiveton Feast Week. Getting a good stock of caol, but still blocked up.

Sat 19 Jul.

Both pits stood. We have been clokced up all day, but orders coming in up to 12 noon and only Mark & I to see to them. Doug Foulds raqng up about 10.30am. Wanted to know when his stock would be done. Told him about 11am. He wanted to know what was left in the wagons, I told him he would have to find out for himself, so he reported me to Bernard Gretton. G Wildcox was driving loco and slide rod dropped off. He was sacked about 1.30pm. We all had snap from Mrs Fowkes, bread, cheese, onion and pop.

Monday 4 August 1930.

We had to weigh up this afternoon as there are no engines out tomorrow. we had a scrap for wagons as only one train came into the yard. It was an LNE. Barnsley seam finished about 9.30pm. hazel seam scraped on to about 9.45pm. Only 2 Hazel cobb wagons left.

Wed 13 Aug.

I went to Rockingham Fire Station, saw Hedley snowden, Joe Unwin, Supt Breaks, J Shorthouse and H Scott all with wives except HS Turner, supt Breaks is trying to persuade JT Goodman to buy K.P. fire brigade a new trailer costing £3.0.0d.

Mon 25 Aug.

Very busy day. management looking at new coal cutting machinery. The actual cutter is from U.S.A.

Monday 1 September 1930.

Very hot at Cleethorpes. Phyllis (baby) is sleeping in a large drawer by the side of our bed. we are in room no 6.

Tue 16 Sep.

Today we have 500 wagons on stock and we are absolutely blocked up, we sent 20 slack to West Kiveton.

Thur 18 Sep.

As I rode to work Mrs Ward stopped in South Anston, she asked me if I would take Ernest Fishers snap as he had forgotten it, she did not know whcih part of the pit he worked in so I sent it down the Barnsley seam hoping he would get it.

Sat 27 Sep.

Things in a terrible mess at pit today. Yesterdays coal cobs and nuts, hazel and hard nuts all to weigh up. Got that book at the office at 10 to 11am. Me and John Shjorthouse were on our own and he too was frightened to get help. Both pits were stood most of the night. Hazel was stood 5 o'clock till 8 when John Thomas Goodman sent them home.