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The Decline Of The Industry Continued
After Nationalisation 1947


1984 Pages   1     2     3     4     5     6     7     8     9  

1984 - Page 6

The Waddilove Report On Subsidence Compensation

The (Lewis) Waddilove Report was commissioned by the Government in 1983 as part of their response to the Commission on Energy, and the (Flowers) Environment Report on coal and the environment. The report showed important changes in provisions and practices of coalmining subsidence compensation scheme – the Repair and Compensation System for Coal Mining Subsidence DamageReport of the Subsidence Compensation Review Committee. The new legislation emphasised the importance of repairs as against compensation payments and the use of ‘Stop notices’ to defer repairs, where further ground movement was anticipated, so that the job was not done twice or compensation paid out twice.

Check List

For a given subsidence claim this is a check list that was carried out by the Subsidence Department overseen by the Area Surveyor and Minerals Manager:

  1. Check the completeness of the surface features – make sure all new buildings etc were added to the plan
  2. Overlay the site with a plan of all old workings
  3. Overlay with details of site conditions
  4. Calculate the ground movements expected by the proposed underground working, firstly the subsidence or drop at the surface and the displacement and strain and any tilt to the building that may happen
  5. It was then a question of what type of property – was it a dwelling house, a factory etc, a hospital, a school etc, a church etc, a farm etc, Government building, Council etc?
  6. Services such as gas and water pipes, electric supply – cables, pylons etc, Roads, Motorways, Rivers, Canals, Railways and all their associated buildings etc, and any special feature – these would as above have to have an anticipated movement etc worked out.

Everything would then have to be costed out to see what the liability to the Board would be and if for example a proposed panel was to work under Mansfield, or Chesterfield, or Nottingham, due to the density of housing it may be prohibitive to work that panel, however it could be possible to alter the layout of the panel or method of work to cause less damage, if it was warranted that the need for coal to the country was more. Sometimes preventive work needed to be done and I remember on one occasion that St Michaels Church on Outram Street at Sutton-in-Ashfield was strapped up with a steel framework and relief trenches dug to prevent any severe damage to the large structure by workings from Sherwood Colliery. On that occasion in the late 1950s I believe it was quite successful with the type of knowledge of subsidence at that time. Thanks to the people like Charles Shadbolt (2499) (ex Surveyor at Annesley and Kirkby) who did much investigation into the ins and outs of subsidence, a Booklet was produced by the NCB as a guide. Knowledge on a subject can only be gained by deep investigation, and help from others in whatever form.

Whilst Surveyor at Ollerton I was approached by John Wilson in the Area Office if I would consider assisting or adding to their calculation system by setting out surface base points in virgin areas in front of all the panels to be worked in the Parkgate seam, and undertake levelling to the same points after the coal had been worked for a couple of years or so. This I did because the points chosen were out in the countryside away from anywhere, so to speak, and by choosing a lovely day to do the job, it was enjoyed by all who were on the project. Personally I found every new task, although generally added to the normal pile of jobs that came through, a challenge, and when completed it was most satisfying. Maybe that is why probably the majority of Surveyors enjoyed their job with the Board, because it was something different every day!

Silver Birch

Silver Birch’ (an unknown at the time, but later disclosed as Chris Butcher, a Bevercotes Blacksmith) Nottinghamshire, travelled 35,000 miles in 3 months spreading the word for the return to work. Rudolph (Randy) Florence, a machine driver at Mansfield colliery (Nottinghamshire) telephoned Ian McGregor Chairman of the NCB at Hobart House, London and he and two others met Mr McGregor in Mansfield on 25th May for secret talks about the dispute.

Diary Of Some Flying Pickets

Diary of some Yorkshire flying pickets

..... Mon 16 – Apr-1984 descended on Bolsover
Tues 17 - Apr Ollerton
Wed 18 - Apr turned back
Thur 19 - Apr Linby
Fri 20 - Apr Linby again
Mon 23 - Apr 10,000 to 15,000 pickets at Harworth
Tues 24 - Apr Harworth again
Wed 25 - Apr Creswell
Thurs 26 - Apr 2,000 pickets at Bevercotes
Wed 3 - May Pye Hill
Thur 4 - May Pye Hill again
Mon 7 - May Welbeck
Tues 8 - May hundreds at Ollerton
Wed 9 - May Ollerton again, also Killamarsh
Thur 10 - May Bevercotes, blocked by police
Fri 11 - May Bentinck

Mass Demonstration at Mansfield 14-18 - May

Mass picket Wed 16 - May Babbington
Thur 17 - May Cotgrave
Fri 18 - May Babbington again
Mon 21 - May Thoresby, blocked by police, fall back to Creswell
Tues 22 - May Silverhill, turned back at Pleasley, went to Creswell
Wed 23 - May Sherwood
Thur 24 - May Bevercotes, via Harworth
Fri 25 - May Orgreave
Sat 26 - May Scunthorpe
Mon 28 - May Orgreave
Tues 29 - May battle at Orgreave, also Bentinck
Wed 30 - May Annesley, back to Bentinck
Thur 31 - May Silverhill but back to Orgreave
Fri 1 - Jun Calverton, back to Orgreave
Sat 2 - Jun Orgreave
Mon 4 - Jun Babbington, back to Orgreave
Tues 5 - Jun Cotgrave, roads blocked
Wed 6 - Jun Welbeck
Thur 7 - Jun Orgreave
Mon 11 - Jun Welbeck, blocked
Tues 12 - Jun , to Mansfield 500
Wed 13 - Jun Harworth 1,000-1,500
Fri 15 - Jun Cadley Hill
Mon 18 - Jun Orgreave
Tues 19 - Jun Newstead

South Nottinghamshire blocked, back to Creswell

Thur 21 - Jun Bentinck
Fri 22 - Jun / Bevercotes
Mon 25 - Jun Newstead via Pleasley
Wed 27 - Jun Rufford
Thur 28 - Jun Rufford again
Fri 29 - Jun Mansfield
Mon 2 - Jul Selby
Tues 3 - Jul Clipstone
Wed 4 - Jul Chesterfield
Thur 5 - Jul Pye Hill blocked
Fri 6 - Jul Selby
Sat 8 - Jul Scargill meets McGregor
Mon 9 - Jul Pye Hill
Tues 10 - Jul Pye Hill
Wed 11 - Jul Pye Hill
Thur 12 - Jul Bentinck
Fri 13 - Jul Linby, back to Warsop
Mon 16 - Jul Power station
Tues 17 - Jul Bentinck
Wed 18 - Jul Bentinck
Thurs 19 - Jul Bentinck
Fri 20 - Jul Bentinck blocked
Mon 23 - Jul Silverwood and Creswell
Tues 24 - Jul Scunthorpe
Wed 25 - Jul Babbington blocked
Thurs 25 - Jul Creswell 2,000 blocked
Fri 27 - Jul Bentinck
Sat 29 - Jul Docks
Mon 30 - Jul Creswell, Whitwell and Bolsover
Tues 31 - Jul Newstead via Pleasley
Wed 1 - Aug Pye Hill
Thur 2 - Aug Creswell
Fri 3 - Aug Scunthorpe
Mon 6 - Aug Newstead
Tues 7 - Aug Bevercotes
Wed 8 - Aug Harworth 300
Thur 9 - Aug Bevercotes, a few got through
Fri 10 - Aug Blidworth
Mon 13 - Aug Markham
Tues 14 - Aug Scunthorpe
Wed 15 - Aug Creswell
Thur 16 - Aug Creswell
Fri 17 - Aug Creswell
Thur 23 - Aug 3 men went in to work at Kiveton Park
Wed 3 - Oct Kiveton Park
Thur 4 - Oct Kiveton Park
Fri 5 - Oct Kiveton Park
Tues 9 - Oct Kiveton Park
Wed 11 - Oct Kiveton Park
Thur 11 - Oct Kiveton Park
Fri 12 - Oct Brodsworth
Thur 18 - Oct Rossington
25 - Oct Kiveton Park
Fri 26 - Oct Kiveton Park
- - Nov Kilnhurst
Mon 10 - Nov Shirebrook
Thur 13 - Nov Manton, the Deputies withdrew their labour, police intervened
14 – Jan - 1985 Sherwood.

Concrete Block Hurled At Van

In May, a concrete block was hurled at a van carrying 10 policemen through Rainworth and 2 needed hospital treatment. It was not known if the offenders were local miners or pickets from Yorkshire. There was a demonstration in Mansfield and 57 were charged with riot. Hundreds pushed forward and smashed down the fence outside the Miners NUM offices at Berry Hill. Police on horseback monitored the situation. One set of men held up a mock gallows complete with swinging noose!

Peaceful Mass Picket At Sutton

A mass but peaceful picket at Sutton colliery (North Nottinghamshire) is shown albeit that many policemen were in attendance.

Doncaster Head Quarters Surrounded

During June 1984 around 1,000 striking miners surrounded the Coal Board's HQ at Doncaster and yelled abuse at the staff. Eggs, bottles, stones and bricks were thrown and some workers punched!


In June 1984, Babbington (producing 357,790 tonnes with 732 men) and Hucknall (producing 401,510 tonnes with 992 men) were connected underground (S Nottinghamshire).  The washery at Babbington had closed in 1983 and since then all the coal produced had been taken by road from Babbington to Hucknall coal prep plant. When the conveyors were coupled up then all Babbington coal would be transported underground and raised at Hucknall. In July 1984 the largest mass picket of the year descended upon Babbington.

Sherwood MP And Director Made Early Underground Visit At Ollerton

On 2nd January 1985 Andy Stewart MP (Cons) for Sherwood made an early (5.30am) underground visit to Ollerton Parkgate 33s panel accompanied by Jack E Wood (4395) Director North Nottinghamshire and Jim Stewart (10115), Assistant Manager. They spoke to the men on the district. Week 43 of the strike and 160 pits out of the total of 174 in the country were now open as the drift back to work gathered momentum.

Anti-Strike Committee

An anti-strike committee was formed. (Note Stillingfleet surface works and the 765½ yards (700m) deep shafts at Selby, Yorkshire were completed during this period).

An ‘official picket’ was set up but this was deemed ‘un-official’ and unconstitutional.

Flying Pickets At Cotgrave

At Thousands descended upon Cotgrave (South Nottinghamshire). Devastation began with the flying pickets kicking cars that many of the miners at the pit decided to leave their cars at home in future and go in to work on the bus.  That did not turn out too great either as the buses were stoned and shouts of ‘scabs’ filled the air. When the pickets had been in the pub at lunch time, the afternoon shift got an even more hostile reception.


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