Extracts from

The Wellington Journal


Shrewsbury News



relating to Broseley and District






Broseley Local History Society


27th January 1912


A shocking burning fatality occurred on Thursday evening at Broseley. Agnes May Hanley, aged two years and nine months, the daughter of Harry Hanley, a moulder in the Coalbrookdale Works, was placed in the charge of a neighbour, Louisa Williams, whilst the mother was at work in the pipe manufactory. About five o’clock Mrs. Williams went out of her house and locked the door, leaving three children inside, including Agnes, but when she returned in five minutes she saw through the window the child Agnes in flames. She failed to unlock the door, and two men with Harry Southern broke open the door, and brought the children out of the house. Agnes was brought beyond recognition and expired shortly afterwards. The boots of a 10 months-old baby were also burnt, but the daughter of Mrs. Williams fortunately escaped injury.

The inquest will be held today (Saturday).


3rd February 1912


THE FUNERAL of Mr. J. C. Lister (only surviving son of the late Mr. J. C. W. Lister) took place on Monday, the service being held at All Saints’ Church, the rector (the Rev. A. C. Howell) conducting. Miss Hilda Watkis, L.R.A.M., played Chopin’s and Beethoven’s “Funeral Marches,” and the hymn sung was “Jesu, lover of my soul” (Mr. Lister’s favourite). The burial service was at the cemetery. The mourners were Messrs. James Lister of Burton and Frank Andrews (cousins), S. E. Corbett, H. H. Humphries, W. H. Witherby (headmaster of Kidderminster School), C. Davies (representative of the Old Boys’ Association), J. Bayley (the College, Wellington), the Rev. J. G. Hamlet, and Mr. J. Cox (representing the Rector, church-wardens, and choir of St. James’s, Hartlebury). Floral tributes were sent by mother, “Et. and Glad.”, “Edythe,” the Rev. and Mrs. Marsden Edwards, “Aunts and Cousins, Wolverhampton,” Miss Potts (Bank House), Mr. Witherby (Kidderminster), the Old Boys of Grammar School, the Boys and Masters of Grammar School, “Frank,” Mr. and Mrs. T. Corbett (Shrewsbury), Mr. and Mrs. T. P. Deakin (Shrewsbury), “Harry and Flo,” Mrs. Southorn, “Ettie and Harry,” Mr. and Mrs. Griffiths (Field House), Mrs. Price, Mrs. L. Dixon, Mr. and Mrs. Shorting, Miss Jones, “Mrs. Watkis and Hilda,” Mr. and Mrs. H. H. Humphries (Erdington), “Emma,” Miss Ada Jones, Mrs. Heywood (Tickwood Hill), “Daisy, Marjorie, Phyllis Cox (Hartlebury)”, clergy, churchwardens, and choir of St. James’s Church, Hartlebury, Mrs. Hibberd, Mrs. Starkey, Miss Allen, Mr. and Mrs. H. Cole (Kidderminster). Mr. Lister was educated at the College, Wellington, and was master there for a year or two. He afterwards accepted an appointment at King Charles I. Grammar School, where he was for 13 years, resigning in August last owing to failing health. News of his decease was received in Kidderminster with great sorrow, where he was universally loved and respected, and his musical abilities much appreciated. He was appointed organist at Wolverley and after-wards at Hartlebury, where he won the same love and esteem. His loss is keenly felt by all who knew him.

VICTORIA INSTITUTE.— The annual meeting of members was held on Tuesday, Alderman Prestage presiding. The accounts presented by the secretary were passed, showing a balance in hand of £2 7s. 10d. The Trustees re-elected, as their representatives on the Managing Committee, Messrs. J. Nicklin (chairman), H. E. Clark, W. Francis, and A. Scott; while Messrs. H. H. Wase, A. Smith, and W. Edge were re-elected as representatives of the members. Votes of thanks were passed to Alderman Prestage for presiding, and to the honorary secretary (Mr. T. Jones) for the manner in which he had carried out his duties.

3rd February 1912


A well-attended meeting was held on Wednesday at Broseley Town Hall to consider the advisability of establishing a bacon factory in the town.

Captain the Hon. George Forester presided, and said that it was very unfortunate that Mr. Corner, the expert, had been taken ill, and was unable to attend. Mr. Shuker and others ought to be congratulated on trying to do something to bring some employment into the district. (Applause.) They all agreed that it was very badly wanted, and no one would be more pleased than himself to see his native town in a flourishing condition once more, and for that reason he told Mr. Shuker that he would he pleased to preside that day. (Applause.) He thought that Mr. Shuker, the organiser of the meeting, would be able to give them some details as to what be proposed to do, and how be considered that a bacon factory would pay and give employment, as these were the reasons for the proposal to start a factory. Revival of rural home productions should be encouraged by co-operative enterprise. They all knew that the two political parties were quite agreed that to revive these things they must get more people back to the land. He promised to do his best to help on the movement in any way he could. (Applause.) With reference to the feeding of pigs, cottagers said that pigs sold cheap, but to purchase the bacon it was a different tale. (Laughter.) With reference to the methods to be adopted, they wanted small shareholders to bring to the small investors, in order to give everyone an interest in the factory, and if they did that he was certain it was the best way of making the thing prosper. (Applause.)

Mr. S. H. Shuker (secretary) then addressed the meeting prior to which he read a telegram from Mr. Corner (expert) from London, stating that he much regretted being too unwell to attend the meeting. He also read a letter from Sir C. S. Henry, M.P., stating that when the matter assumed a concrete form he would be prepared to give it his consideration. Mr. Beville Stanier, M.P., wrote stating that a previous engagement at Shrewsbury prevented him from attending the meeting at Broseley, but he hoped they would be able to start a bacon factory, for he was sure it would, be of an immense amount of good to the farmers and also to the consumers of bacon.— Mr. Thomas Parker, of Coalbrookdale, also wished the venture a success.— Mr. Shuker went on to say that the reason for starting this industry was the decline of other industries in the neighbour-hood, and also the amount of unemployment. He was of opinion that there was no more important question before the British public than that of the food supply of Great Britain. (Applause). The three important points for them to consider were — firstly, unemployment; secondly, imports, their largeness, and the amount of money going out continually, and the decline in the rural and agricultural interests; and thirdly, the value of co-operation. He considered that unemployment was a national disgrace, and a national crime. Unemployment caused terrible loss, and it was a terrible tax on the worker. (Applause). With regard to imports, he said that £180,000,000 was passing out of England every year, to foreign countries, for food, and the idea of a bacon factory was to tap that stream. (Applause). Experts told them that every penny could be produced in England. (Applause). It was better for charity to begin at home than to support other countries. (Hear, hear). Some little time ago there was a talk of the invasion of England; but, he said England was already invaded, in as much as the foreigner was taking away a portion of our trade, which meant a part of our living. (Hear, hear). He went on to explain the value of co-operation, which, he said, was perhaps not popular with some people, but be maintained that to succeed in any effort they must combine, and work for each other. (Applause). He contended that the success of the movement would not only be for the benefit of themselves, but also for the whole of the Empire.           (Applause).

Captain Forester then proposed “That this meeting approves of a scheme for starting a bacon factory for Broseley, and that a general committee be formed to obtain the exact amount of support from farmers, small holders, and cottagers.”— Mr. Harry Onions seconded the proposition, which Mr. A. W. Bishop supported, and it was carried.

In reply to Mr. T. Griffiths, Mr. Shuker said that the factory world employ about 32 hands.— Mr. Griffiths thought that that would not go very far to abolish unemployment in Broseley. He asked if it was possible to raise 10,000 hogs to run a factory.- Mr. Bishop said that it meant 200 pigs a. week.-Mr. Shuker replied that it was in the power of the people to do so.

A General Committee of 30 was found, who afterwards met, and appointed Mr. Shuker as secretary.

3rd February 1912



On Saturday at Broseley Mr. Coroner F. H. Potts held an inquiry into the death of Agnes May Hanley, two years and nine months old, who died from burns received the previous Thursday.

Harry Hanley, father of deceased, stated that he lived at Legge’s Hill. The last time he saw the child alive was early on Thursday, when he went to his employment. She was in bed. The other child was ten months old. They were both in charge of Louisa Williams, a neighbour, who looked after them every day whilst he and his wife were at work. Witness returned from work at 4-30 p.m., and just after he arrived a woman named Griffiths ran into his house and told him that he had better go down to his children because one was on fire. He went at once with his wife, and found deceased lying on the floor of the kitchen in Louisa Williams’s house, still on fire. Two men, named Speke and Griffiths, were attending to deceased. Dr. J. G. Boon was sent for, and promptly came, and the child’s injuries were attended to. The children had been looked after by Miss Williams for two months for 2s. 6d. a week. There was a fireguard in the house.

Louisa Williams, single woman, Legge’s Hill, said that Henley’s two children had been sent to her by the parents for two months every weekday whilst they were at work. They came to her on the Thursday about 9-30 in the morning, and stayed with her all day. About five o’clock she left the house to fetch a pint of paraffin, leaving Hanley’s two children and her own child, aged 5½ years, in the kitchen, in which there was a small fire. She left the fireguard produced in front of the fire. She locked them in for safety. She also went to the King’s Head for a pint of beer. She was not away more than five minutes, but when she reached the wicket she heard screams, and on looking through the window saw deceased in flames standing up near the fire, outside the guard. Witness tried to unlock the door, but failed, and she then smashed two large panes of glass to get in. She shouted for help, and Mr. Harry Southorn and two other men burst the door open and extinguished the flames. The youngest was safe in the chair, and her own child got on top of the sofa. The room was full of smoke. Witness admitted often leaving the children alone in the house for five or ten minutes at a time, but they had always been all right.

The Coroner— You are paid to look after these children, and you left them alone. Is that a right thing to do?

Witness— I am sorry I have ever had any-thing to do with the children.

The Coroner— That is not the question, You had no right to have left them.

In reply to the foreman, witness said that she had not been out before that day, and she took the beer home.

William Boden, Maypole Road, tile sorter, said that he was called by the last witness, and he went with Mr. Southorn and forced the door open. He saw deceased on fire; she was close up to the fireguard.

Mary Pope, Legge’s Hill, widow, grandmother to deceased, said that she was called to the house by Boden. She carried the child home, where it died the same evening.

Dr. J. G. Boon, Broseley, stated that death was due to shock caused by the burns.

The Coroner said that it was not a proper thing to do to leave young children in the house by themselves where there was fire. Miss Williams should certainly have got someone to keep an eye on them when she went out. There was no doubt in his mind that this was an accident, contributed to to some extent by the children being left alone in the house, He did not think there was any evidence to say that there was a case of manslaughter.

The verdict of the jury was that deceased died from burns accidentally received.

The Coroner cautioned the witness Williams to be more careful in the future how she looked after any children committed to her care.

17th February 1912



Before Councillor J. H. A. Whitley (Mayor), Captain the Hon. Geo. Forester, Alderman D. L. Prestage: Dr. G. D. Collins, Alderman J. Davies, Messrs. B. Maddox and W. Roberts.

LICENSING BUSINESS.— Mr. A. H. Thorn-Pudsey (magistrates’ clerk) read the annual report of Superintendent Tait, which stated that during the year two licensed persons had been proceeded against under the Food and Drugs Act, one was dismissed, and one ordered to pay costs. With these exceptions the whole of the houses had been conducted without complaint. The Royal Oak, Iron-Bridge, and The Victoria, Broseley, were at the adjourned licensing meeting in March last referred for compensation, and the houses were closed on 30th September. In the borough there were 62 alehouses, 30 beerhouses (on), 2 beerhouses (off) and 7 wines and spirits (grocers’ licenses). The population of the borough was 15,244, which gave one house to each 165 of the population. With regard to drunkenness there were during the year 37 persons proceeded against; and of these 27 males and 3 females were convicted. This showed an in-crease of six convictions, as compared with the previous year.— The Clerk stated that the Bench objected in open Court to the renewal of the licenses of the Royal Oak. Much Wenlock and the Rodney Inn, Coalbrookdale (fully-licensed houses) on grounds that they were not required for the needs of the district, there being other licensed houses in the neighbourhood with sufficient accommodation.- They ordered Superintendent Tait to serve the necessary notices on the licensees, the matter to be dealt with at the adjourned Licensing Sessions in March next.— The other licenses in the borough were renewed.

STEALING BACON.— Louisa Williams, single woman, Broseley, was charged with stealing 2lb. of bacon, value 1s. 6d., belonging to the Iron-Bridge and Coalbrookdale Co-operative Society.- Walter Legge, manager of the branch shop at Broseley, said that he missed a piece of bacon in the shop, and he went outside and asked Williams if she had any bacon in her possession that she had not paid for…


17th February 1912



Under the auspices of the Shropshire Miners’, Engineers’, and Furnacemen’s Federation, a mass meeting was held in the Oakengates Primitive Methodist Schoolroom on Thursday’ evening. The official notice convening the meeting stated that the business would be: “To make arrangements for giving notices on February 17th, re minimum wage; to make any other arrangements in the event of a strike being declared.” Copies of the following notice were distributed, and it was stated that each miner in the Shropshire Federation would receive one for the purpose of filling up and to hand in to-day (Saturday):— “I hereby tender 14 days’ notice to cease work, re minimum wage.” Mr. A. Hoggins (president of the association) presided, and was supported by Mr. W. Latham (secretary) and Mr. C. Matthews (treasurer).

The Chairman said the notice convening the meeting fully explained its objects. They had recently taken a ballot on the question it referred to, and he thought they all knew exactly how they regarded it. He would now appeal to everyone who voted in the ballot for a minimum wage to tender their notices on Saturday as a further step towards the realisation of their wishes. They would admit that they had been passing through a trying time, and had had a very complex question to deal with. It was practically impossible to have a uniform wage throughout the country owing to certain local circumstances being against it, but through their leaders and the Miners Federation they were seeking to do their utmost to obtain for them an irreducible minimum in every locality. The Shropshire Federation, by an overwhelming majority, had already decided upon a minimum so far as they were concerned. There must, at the present moment, be a great burden on the minds of the men who had the welfare of the thousands of miners at heart, and also sympathetic consideration for those who were dependent upon the coal trade to continue their industries; because there could not be the slightest doubt that the national strike would be a very serious thing for the country if one had to take place. It would be so comprehensive that hardly any-one in the land would not, in some measure, feel its effects. But the miners had come to a point at which they could not draw back, and they must boldly face the battle if one were forced upon them. They were an army of men moving to effect industrial emancipation, and they would not cry “halt!” till they got it. The local leaders had not been without care or thought in this matter; and in urging the men to send in their notices on Saturday they had not lost sight of the fact that something else would then have to be done. The leaders did not ask the men to follow them blindly, and they would see that some provision was made for them when the crucial moment came. He hoped they would all nerve themselves for the conflict, and that when they met again it would be to celebrate the achievement of a victory they had always had in view, and a triumph in the purpose they had ever set before them. (Applause.)

Mr. Latham then addressed the meeting. He said the man who was against the Miners’ Federation was against himself. They had never heard him say—nor had the possibility ever appealed to him—that they were going to settle this great dispute without a strike. The most optimistic among them were now also convinced that if it were going to be settled at all it would have to be done with a strike, and to his own mind settlements without a strike were hardly worth the paper they were written on. (Hear, hear.) Everybody had been trying to avoid “a national disaster.” Some said it would be “murderous,” an “appalling calamity.” In that particular sense a good many had been murdered since he was a child—by bad ventilation, insufficient timber, and the want of some protection that might have saved the human race; and a good many had been murdered by being underfed, and men and women had died broken hearted because the battle of life had been too hard. (Hear, hear.) He was convinced that the miners were not getting their quid pro quo—they were not getting sufficient out of their labour to keep body and soul together. (Applause.) If the miners’ leaders were hob-nobbing with colliery officials, then he could understand that the men would have some cause to fear; but in this instance their leaders were actuated by a deep-rooted conviction that the demand made for under-ground workers was a just and righteous one, and, if the men would hold on like grim death, a battle would be fought in this country which would end in making the century bright with the glory of conquest. (Applause.) How did they stand that day? He had just come from the “seat of war,” where it had been his honour and privilege to represent his own county. Every stone had been turned to effect a settlement, but Northumberland and Durham were still as black as night. They would not even discuss proposals that had been submitted to them. Wales was also quite as dark as Northumberland and Durham. On Wednesday morning Mr. Enock Edwards, the President of the National Miners’ Federation, told the conference point blank that there was nothing to be discussed, and the conference was adjourned, but when there was anything worth discussing it would be called together again. There could be no settlement unless there was unanimity among the colliers of the North of England, Scotland, and Wales, and he thought that the unity among these was one of the most encouraging phases of the situation. There was no difference of opinion between the leaders; their “Cabinet” had not quarrelled, but there were signs of disagreement among some of the employers, and he considered that that was hopeful. If there was anybody who wanted to break away it was riot in the ranks of the miners. There had been suggestions that the object of a national strike would be defeated by getting coal from America and the Continent, but there was to be a meeting of the International Committee next week, and they might make an international arrangement which would defeat that end. The situation was not half so serious as it was some years ago, when the men faced it boldly and won. He noticed that in the King’s Speech there was a reference to the labour unrest, and probably the King had the miners in his mind; but there was no Government—no Industrial Council, nor any-body else-who could do anything against the wishes of the Miners’ Federation. (Applause.)

In some cases a little had been taken off what the men originally demanded, but what was to be given for Shropshire would satisfy him, as, so far as the lads were concerned, it was even more than had been previously suggested. (Hear, hear.) Coming to the financial aspect, he had read somewhere that the miners of “that district had some money in the Post Office.” If so, whose money was it? That money was theirs! (Applause.) They would tell everybody, even the Registrar of Friendly Societies himself, that that money belonged to them. (Applause). - There were a few hundred pounds in the Savings Bank on which they could at once rely, and it had been deposited there through the agency of the sixpenny contribution in numbers 1, 2, 3, and 6 Lodges. The savings of the last half year had been banked, and the Federation benefited to the extent of £440. He wished they could have had the benefit of a sixpenny union contribution for the last 10 or 15 years, for they would then have had a very handsome sum at their disposal. He would admit that it had involved a lot of persistent effort to establish a six-penny union, but now that it had been established they would do their utmost to continue a brotherhood which they hoped had been indissolubly formed. Whatever letters might have been written either on the legal or any other aspect, they would see to it that that money in the bank would go to the Shropshire Miners’ Enginemen’s, and Surfacemen’s Federation, who would see that every penny they got and could get would be used on the members’ behalf. He and other leaders would leave the employers to realise the responsibility of their own positions, but the leaders would be resolute and firm in demanding a full recognition of the righteous claims of the men. (Applause). It was to their interest and his own that they should continue to remain financial members of their Association. The men who would not soil their hands were making trouble for themselves; so, whatever the future, it would be what the miners in that district and others who thought with them chose to make it. (Applause).— No resolution was submitted, but it is only fair to state that the proceedings appeared to be characterised by unanimity.

24th February 1912


DEATH OF MR. W. POTTS.— On Friday last week Mr. William Potts (third and youngest son of the late Mr. George Potts, solicitor, by his first marriage, and brother of Mr. Edward Bagnall Potts, Bank House, who died in the month of October last), passed away at his apartments High Street. The deceased gentleman, who was 69 years of age, had suffered from blindness for many years. He possessed a kind and sympathetic nature, and was esteemed by all classes of society. The remains of the deceased gentleman were quietly laid to rest the cemetery on Tuesday. The service in the church (Mr. Milnes, lay reader, reader the lesson), and at the grave-side was conducted by the Rev. A. C. Howell (rector). Mr. Milnes played with feeling, “O Rest in the Lord,” as the cortege entered the church, and a funeral march on leaving. In accordance with the wish of deceased the funeral was of a simple and unostentatious character. As an evidence of respect blinds were drawn and shops shuttered at nearly every place on route to the place of interment. The mourners were Mr. F. H. Potts (brother), Dr. Collins (brother—in—law), Mr. George Potts, and Mr. Robert Potts (nephews). Others present included:— Mr. J. A. Downes, Alderman D, L. Prestage. Dr. Edwards, Messrs. William Price, Ernest Price, P. H. Martin, John Pountney, and William Francis. The Rev. R. de Ricci (rector of Jackfield) and the Rev. W. A. Terry (vicar of Benthall) and Miss Allen (Benthall) were present at the church. Beautiful wreaths were contributed by Mr. and Mrs. Allan McGregor, “Purnwurtsley, Oxon,” “Bank House”. Mr. and Mrs. Gerald Heywood (Tickwood Hall, Much Wenlock), and Mrs. Price and Sons.

2nd March 1912



The strike of miners is now general through-out the Kingdom, among the last to come out being the colliers employed by the Lilleshall Company in the Mid-Shropshire Coalfield, whose notices expire at noon to-day (Saturday).

The controversy with regard to the minimum wage took a new turn on Thursday owing to a speech which Mr. Asquith addressed to the miners’ delegates at a meeting at the Foreign Office. The Prime Minister announced to the miners that in the opinion of the Government a case has been made out for ensuring to the underground workers, with adequate safe-guards, a reasonable minimum wage. They do not intend that the resistance of a minority of employers shall definitely delay the attainment of this object. If it cannot be secured by agreement, it will be secured by the Government “by every means which is necessary for its effective attainment.” At the same time the Prime Minister urged the miners, if the principle of the minimum wage were recognised; to allow a reasonable latitude of discussion in regard to particular rates— that is to say, not to adhere strictly to the schedule of minimum rates already put forward by them. If the Government were to make themselves responsible in this matter, he said, they must be allowed to discuss with the representatives of both sides the question whether as regards any particular figure applied to any particular area it was a reasonable figure.

There have been numerous conferences during the week between the Government, coalowners, and men, with a view to arriving at a settlement in the dispute, but last night Mr. Asquith found it necessary to state in the House of Commons that the conferences between the various parties had been broken off. He will make a fuller statement on Monday.

The Home Secretary, in reply to Mr. Kier Hardie in the House of Commons on Thursday, said that troops would be sent to any place only on a requisition of the magistrates, and every care would be taken that troops would net be sent until their presence was absolutely necessary.

An erroneous impression appears to have got about in some quarters to the effect that the Territorial Force can be called upon for strike duty. This is not the case; the Territorials cannot be utilised for such a purpose.


On Thursday evening a mass meeting of miners was held in the Primitive Methodist Schoolroom, Oakengates, under the auspices of the Shropshire Miners’, Surfacemen’s, and Enginemen’s Federation. There was a very good attendance, the meeting being called to consider the present situation. The chair was occupied by Mr. Charles Matthews (treasurer), who referred to the great issues that were before the country, and the efforts that were being made to secure the minimum wage for miners in the country, to get which they would have to fight hard. They had a just cause, and he hoped they would have success in their efforts to gain the best advantages. — Mr. Alfred Hoggins (President of the Federation) apologised for the absence of Mr. William Latham (agent), who was away in London, along with the other official representatives of the federation. Reviewing the situation, Mr. Hoggins advised the men to go to their work the next two days, as their notices did not expire till today (Saturday). He could tell them for a certainty that there was going to be a strike, and it had come to his knowledge that there were men being sworn in as special constables; but he hoped the miners would act like men, and not cause any riotous disturbances in that district.— It was decided, on the motion of Mr. Dabbs, seconded by Mr. Parton, to work the week out.— Mr. Hoggins said that their thanks were due to their leaders for the noble stand they had taken and the great work they had done.— A vote of confidence in the leaders was carried unanimously.— It was agreed, as in other districts, to let men go to work to attend to and feed the ponies down the pits, and do necessary work for the safety of the mines, but no one to be allowed to wind coal. It was also decided that the men bring up their tools (today) Saturday at noon.

This decision will affect between 2,000 and 3,000 men in the county.

Several industries in the immediate neighbourhood of Iron-Bridge will be closed during the strike. Relief committees have been formed to alleviate the distress, which is expected to be very acute.

The London and North-Western Railway Company are curtailing and revising their train services during the continuance of the strike, as are also the Great Western Railway Company in respect of merchandise traffic, &c., as will be found particularised in the advertising columns.


In view of the strike, the Mayor of Shrewsbury (Major Wingfield) advises all consumers of coal in the borough, whether for business or household purposes, to be as economical as practicable. As there will probably be a rush for coal when the strike ends, it may not be obtainable for many days after, and it is therefore advisable to begin to economise at once. In this connection he also invites the co-operation of all consumers of water and light to avoid waste of water, gas, and electric light, and to be as economical with them as possible, and so assist the Corporation and the Shrewsbury Gas Company to maintain their supplies. Though, as he says, there is no immediate necessity to curtail any of the supplies, a little saving, if generally adopted by all at once, may be worth much in a month’s time.

Advice of this character is equally applicable to all towns in the county, and coal consumers in general should take to heart the words of the Mayor of Shrewsbury.


Yesterday over a million colliery workmen were idle in Great Britain and the appended table shows the totals, including surfacemen, for each district. More will leave work to-day.

Yorks, Derby, and Notts              241,767

South Wales and Monmouth       213.161

Northumberland and Durham      212,543

Scotland                                     131,315

Lancashire and Cheshire            104,659

Midlands                                      87,539

Cumberland, Gloucester,
and Somerset                               26,022

North Wales                                 15,161




9th March 1912



A week has now passed since the coal strike became general, and there is no indication of any appreciable progress towards peace. The miners’ executive and a committee of the coal-owners have had numerous conferences with the Government, with, unfortunately, no result. The majority of the owners agreed to the Government proposals, but the men have definitely refused to entertain their suggestions.

A general rise in the price of bread has been decided upon. Reports from various parts of the country indicate that distress among the poor is increasing, and there is a further large addition to the number of workers thrown out of employment in other trades than the coal industry


Paralysing as the general effects of the strike have been throughout the country, it would still be too early to write of its more serious economic detriment to the Shropshire miners themselves. They have been used to occasional spells of cessation from work, and temporary stoppages for the adjustment of their differences with their employers have been fairly frequent. The more thrifty ones among them, presciently observing the danger in the distance, have doubt-less made such provision for the strike as their means would allow, and that proportion of them who habitually live from hand-to-mouth— not necessarily those who earn the lowest wages— are probably trusting to the local shopkeepers to tide them over till more hopeful times come back once more.

Apart from the restricted train service and the local limitations, it cannot be said that much inconvenience has yet been caused to the general public in Shropshire by the strike. There has been a rush for coal, and several firms are without supplies, but that has occurred before when severity of weather has suddenly set in. During the present week the atmospheric conditions have been exceedingly spring-like in their balminess, and the necessity for fires has not been so imperative as it easily might have been at this part of the year. In most of the towns— and this is especially the case in Shrewsbury and Wellington— the majority of people use gas for lighting and heating to a vastly greater extent than they did some years ago, so that a comparatively small amount of fuel is required for domestic purposes. Of course, the prolongation of the strike must necessarily diminish such a valuable convenience as that. It is probable that those among the industrial classes who feel the pinch of the strike more severely than others are those engaged in forges and manufactories which are entirely dependent upon regular supplies of coal, several of which in the neighbour-hood of Wellington have had to close down for want of it. These men have no strike pay to assist them, and, as one employer sympathetically asserted, they will today, through no fault of their own, have no wages to draw. It is only fair to the miners to say that while many of their milling confreres acutely feel the hardship of their position, they confess that they recognise that it is an industrial struggle which might overtake themselves at any moment, and therefore they do not very strongly resent it at present.

The conduct of the Shropshire miners during this workless week has been exemplary in every respect. So far it has been a peaceful strike, and the men as a whole have shown no inclination to act in any but an orderly and law-abiding manner.

Passing through the whole area affected by the strike between, Madeley Wood and Wellington, a JOURNAL representative was impressed with the transformation in the outlook across the country and on the horizon. Vulcan had quenched his fires, and the Cyclops slumbered. Nowhere could be heard the throbbing of the winding engines of the collieries, nor the rattle of the ropes bringing their black burdens from the dismal depths of the coalseams. No sombre columns of smoke ascended from the towering tops of furnace chimneys; but the sun shed effulgent rays over a landscape as pure and picturesque as could be found in the country. The scene was Elysian; but hidden away from its glitter and glory were the possibilities of a tragedy which may become appalling.

Owing to shortage of fuel several furnaces at the Midland Carriage Works, Shrewsbury, were closed down on Wednesday, and others on Thursday; and it is probable that after today (Saturday) the whole of the 200 employers will have ceased work. Messrs. Lowcock have a stock of coal sufficient to last a fortnight, and Mr. Thomas Corbett of the Perseverance Ironworks took steps at an early stage to safe-guard the interests of his works.

At Oakengates the Snedshill Ironworks and Priorslee Steelworks have been closed all the week, and both the furnaces at Priorslee are damped down. Some 600 or 700 men are thus affected in the iron and steel departments, and many in other departments are also thrown out of work. At the New Yard Engineering Works at St. George’s, however there is a stock of fuel that will last for some weeks. The same remark applies to the works of Messrs. Maddock and Co. at Oakengates.

A mass meeting of miners was held in the Primitive Methodist Schoolroom, Oakengates, on Monday, when Mr. A. Hoggins presided over a crowded attendance of miners engaged in the Lilleshall Collieries and members of the Shropshire Federation. A lengthy address was delivered by Mr. W. Latham (agent and secretary), who passed in review the course of events up to the present crisis and gave a resume of the proceedings and negotiations in London, already reported in the public press, and urged the men to be loyal and true. It was decided to remain firm to the rates of wages already agreed upon by the federation for the district, and it was decided to transfer the money belonging to the union front the Post Office to Lloyds Bank for the better convenience of carrying out their strike pay.

The Royal Oak Assembly Room, Madeley, was on Monday crowded with miners to hear addresses from Mr. A. Hoggins (president of the Shropshire Miners’ Federation) and Mr. W. Latham (miners’ agent). Mr. T. Tranter presided, and Mr. W. Instone (secretary) also occupied a seat at the table. In the course of their addresses the speakers explained that what they were asking for was 7s. a day for skilled workmen, for all over 21 years of age, and for lads over 14.— Mr. Latham proposed ‘‘That this meeting approve of the conduct of the Miners’ Conference last week, and pledges itself to stand by the resolution not to resume work unless the minimum wage as laid down by the federation be conceded to the workers of the Madeley Wood Colliery Company.— The motion was unanimously carried.

Another meeting of miners was held at Madeley last night, addressed by Messrs. W. Latham and Hoggins. Mr. Latham spoke in favour of the men keeping the furnaces going, but the meeting decided not to go to work unless the proprietors guaranteed the minimum.

The Madeley Wood Co. yesterday gave the furnacemen fourteen days’ notice.

On Tuesday a meeting, of local colliers belonging to the Miners’ Federation was held at Hanwood, where they were addressed by Mr. W. Latham, the miners’ agent for Shropshire. The meeting was private, but it is understood that the men decided by a very large majority in favour of continuing the strike.

On Monday a meeting of the Joint Conciliation Board of the G.W. and L. and N.W. Railway Companies was held at Shrewsbury, under the presidency of Mr. John Williams, joint railways superintendent. The joint staffs from Birkenhead, Chester, Shrewsbury, Wellington, Ludlow, and Hereford were represented. In view of the present situation the modifying of the terms of the men’s service was considered, and of two alternatives the one was chosen of dividing the work amongst all the men. The other proposal was to reduce the staff. To ease matters a large number of men will take their holidays now. The Great Western Railway Company have also a scheme for assisting their staff, and minimising its reduction as far as possible. Considerable alteration in the local time tables have been made, and the service during the coming week will he further curtailed. All excursions and cheap bookings are cancelled.

Operations at the brick and tile works in the Iron-Bridge district are practically suspended, in fact a manager informed a JOURNAL representative that no more bricks will be made till after the settlement of the strike. The Iron-Bridge Gas Company have sufficient coal in stock to last six weeks, and there is also no likelihood of a shortage of water, the Harrington Joint Water Committee having wisely prepared for the strike.

In the course of an address to a large company of confirmation candidates assembled in St. Chad’s Church, Shrewsbury, on Wednesday, the Bishop of Lichfield, referring to the labour unrest, said that he did not know where the blame lay, he did not pronounce who was to blame, but they could not help feeling at a time like this that if all our people were Christians a section would not use the weapons they were now using to injure their fellow creatures in order to secure things for themselves which doubtless they believed to be right and just.


10th March 1912


OLD BAPTIST CHURCH.— At a meeting of the Church on Monday the Pastor (Mr. J. Gilpin) tendered his resignation of the pastorate, which was accepted.

DISTRICT COUNCIL, Wednesday.— Present:—Alderman D. L. Prestage (chairman), Councillors J. Nicklin, T. I. Griffiths, and A. A. Exley, with Messrs. Potts (clerk), G. Stevenson (surveyor), H. Herbert (sanitary inspector), E. Oakes (collector), and E. Abberley (water inspector).—The Collector re-ported that there was an adverse balance in, the two accounts of £40.— Mr. Oakes stated that the rate was coming in very slowly— there appeared to be no money in the place. — There was a record list of rate-defaulters, which the meeting decided to deal with at the next meeting— The Collector added that the sum of £310 was yet to be collected.— The surveyor presented his books, showing that his expenditure for the month amounted to £50.— On the motion of Mr. Nicklin, it was decided to purchase a snowplough for the town. The proposer pointed out the remarkable work that Lord Forester’s plough had executed in removing the snow in the town. — Mr. E. Abberley informed the meeting that all the water mains in the district were in good working order, but he reported that all the water pipes at the isolation hospital were frozen up. He was instructed to look into this matter.— Mr. Herbert said that there was only one case of scarlet fever notified to him since the last meeting. There had been one fatal case of phthisis.— The Clerk presented his estimate of expenditure for the next 12 months, which the meeting considered. The amount to be raised by a rate was £1,459, and it was decided, on the motion of the Chairman, supported by Mr. Exley, to levy a general district rate of 3s. in the pound, an increase of 2d.

A SUPPER in connection with the United Football Club was held on Tuesday at the Fox Room, when Dr. J. G. Boon presided. After the repast the usual toasts were honoured, and these who took part in the “smoker” which followed were Messrs. L. Dixon, W. Oakley, H. Southern, J. Quinn, H. Aston. F. Glover, E. S. White, G. Gough, J. Edwards, W. Wilde, S. Tonkiss, and J. Evans.

DEATH OF MR. T. JONES.- On Friday last week Mr. Thomas Jones suddenly passed away, in his 58th year, at his residence, Wesley House, Duke Street. Deceased had been employed as a gilder at the Coalport China Works from his youth upwards. He had been a member of “Rose of Sharon” Lodge of Oddfellows, M.U., for a number of years, and a large contingent of that body, attired in regalia, attended the funeral, also the committee of the United Friendly Societies. He had been a regular attendant at the Broseley Wesleyan Chapel for many years, and was well-known and highly esteemed by a large circle of friends. The remains were laid to rest in Broseley Cemetery on Wednesday. A service was held in the Wesleyan Chapel by the Rev. P. Amys (Iron-Bridge), who also officiated at the cemetery. Two favourite hymns of the deceased, “Hark! The song of holy voices” and “Eternal Light,” were feelingly rendered by the choir, and the organist (Mr. J. A. Hartshorne) played “O Rest in the Lord” as the cortege entered the chapel, and the “Dead March” in “Saul” as they left. The mourners were Messrs. A. O. Jones and F. A. Jones (sons). E. Davis, G. W. Aston, and A. Taylor (brother-in-law), Walter Davis, Ernest Price, Wm. Price, F. Bangham, and Norman Taylor (nephews), Fletcher Plimley of Birmingham (cousin), and A. M. Williams. Among the friends were Messrs. J. E. Hartshorne, J. Davies, J. Chilton, C. Chilton, and several of deceased’s fellow workmen. As a mark of respect most of the houses en route to the cemetery had blinds drawn or shutters up. Mr. Thomas Jones, P.P.G.M. (secretary), read the address prescribed by the Independent Order of Oddfellows at the graveside. Wreaths were contributed by “His loving wife” `Bert and Fred (sons), “Madge and Lill (daughters),” “His sister (Pattie), “ Mrs. Edwin Davis and family, “His sister (Lizzie).” Mrs. Price, Mr. and Mrs. A. Taylor and family, Mr, and Mrs. George Aston and family. Mr. Cecil Jones (son), and Mr. and Mrs. Hartshorne (Zanesville, Ohio, U.S.A.), Miss Beszant, Miss M. Hartshorne, and members of Broseley Wesleyan Church and Choir, and Mrs. Legge (sister). The funeral arrangements were carried out by Mr. James Davies (King Street).


16th March 1912



There are indications of a restive spirit among the coal strikers, more especially among the non-unionists, in some districts. In Scotland particularly the men outside the union ranks are showing anxiety to return to the collieries, and at two pits in Lanarkshire work was resumed on Thursday. A small pit near Sheffield was also reopened. Meanwhile the roll of unemployed in other industries continues to grow.

The Miners’ Federation announced on Thursday night that they had submitted to the joint conference being held between Ministers, coal-owners, and miners, resolutions accepting Mr. Asquith’s proposal for local negotiations on certain points in the presence of “a neutral person” after the questions relating to the schedule rates for coal-getters and the minimum rates for day men and boys had been settled. It is believed that the conference may last several days yet.


There is no perceptible change in the attitude of the Shropshire miners from that re-corded last week. Whatever may be the feelings of the county generally with regard to Trades Unionism and the merits of the strike, it has to be acknowledged that the Shropshire members of the Federation are steadfastly adhering to their fernier resolutions, and are remaining firm if not defiant. In some quarters this is causing considerable sacrifice, and no little suffering. Tradesmen are complaining of the decline of business, and it is painfully apparent that among the poorer sections of the mining industry, where large families have to be maintained and there is nothing but the meagre amount of strike pay to meet the expenditure, much privation is being experienced. The Stoicism with which it is borne is really remarkable, but unless a speedy settlement comes, many families will be involved in almost inextricable misery. It will at least take them nine months to recover. The number of men and youths thrown out of work through the closing of various establishments for the want of coal has greatly increased during the week. Most of those who belong to unions are receiving small lock-out payments each week, but they must inevitably soon be in as bad a plight as the miners themselves. Some surprise was caused a few days ago in federated districts in the Midlands by a rumour that the Lilleshall Company’s men were returning to work but it will be seen that this is not a fact.

Some men are working at the Kemberton Pits but simply for the purpose of getting clod-coal to keep certain furnaces alive, and this has been sanctioned by the local union. It is gratifying to find that the behaviour of the strikers remains admirably peaceful.

Considerable inconvenience has been experienced at Shrewsbury during the week owing to the continuation of the strike, and the notices which had been given to the employees of the Midland Carriage and Waggon Works duly expired last Saturday, when nearly 200 men ceased work. The employees at the Joint Railway Companies’ works have also received notices which expire today (Saturday), and an intimation has also been given the workmen at the G.W.R. waggon works that their hours of work will be considerably curtailed. During the week the Mayor (Major Wingfield) kindly distributed loads of brushwood among the poorer people of the town, and he proposes to open a relief fund should the strike continue.

On Wednesday a numerously-attended mass meeting of the Lilleshall Company’s miners was held at Oakengates. Mr. C. Matthews (district treasurer) presided. He said that they had done their first round, and had started upon the second, which they looked like finishing, as he could not see that there was any alteration in the position of affairs. He hoped that they would continue to be as peaceable as hitherto. He criticised the appointment of special constables for the district. Mr. A. Hoggins (president of the Shropshire Miners’ Federation) gave a general survey of the situation. He said that the strike should not be settled by Act of Parliament. He did not believe in compulsory arbitration, for it would do away with their right to strike, and they would rather have a peaceful settlement. A telegram was received from the agent (Mr. Wm. Latham), who was in London, which read, “No change: no surrender.” (Applause.)—Discussion took place as to the working at Kemberton Pits, and Mr. Hoggins said that whatever had been done it had been by the men themselves. He spoke in high praise of the loyalty of the men’s leaders, and said that if any alterations were to be made in the schedule it would have to come to a ballot by the men. It was decided to distribute the strike pay to the men at the various lodges this morning (Saturday). It was also decided that if a man had been working at any of the emergency works his money should be made up to 10s. a week.

A largely-attended mass meeting of miners was held on Thursday at Madeley, which was presided over by Mr. T. Tranter. Mr. A. Hoggins (president of the Shropshire Miners’ Association) addressed the meeting, and said that he hoped the negotiations in London this week would end with good results; in fact, he was of opinion that they would see the end of the strike by the end of this week. (Hear, hear.) If it was not settled this week they could make up their minds that they were in for a long struggle. He reviewed the situation, and concluded by saying that there was no doubt of the men achieving the victory, and it was only a matter now of time. (Applause.) —The Chairman informed the meeting that the manager had promised the clod coal men that whatever was settled for this district as to a minimum wage he would date back from last Monday and also make up the back payment. (Applause.)— A resolution was unanimously carried that the strike money should be paid out today (Saturday).— The iron-stone pit men, numbering 200, unanimously decided to return to work on Monday next on the conditions named by the manager.

A further restricted train service at ordinary fares was brought into operation on the Great Western Railway yesterday. The company also announce by advertisement that their goods train service will be curtailed, and they will be unable to accept certain classes of goods specified in the advertisement until further notice.

16th March 1912



Before Mr. J. H. A. Whitley (mayor). Lord Forester, Captain G. Forester, Dr. G. D. Collins Messrs. W. J. Legge, J. Davies, B. Maddox, and W. Roberts.

TOWN COUNCILLOR FINED.— George Keay, licensed victualler, Broseley, and a member of the Wenlock Town Council, was charged with omitting to cause three of his horses to be sufficiently fed. Mr. H. R. Phillips (Shifnal) prosecuted, and Mr. H. W. Hughes (Shrewsbury) defended.— Inspector Taylor stated that he visited the Mill Field at Broseley on Feb. 7th, in company with Police-constable Edwards. He went across the field, and found three dark looking ponies outside the old windmill. He went in the shed, and there found a dark-looking colt dead, the body being in an emaciated condition, and lying beside it was a brown yearling The yearling was struggling, and trying to get up. Witness looked in the manger, in which was scattered some meal and bran. It had not been touched this animal being in too weak a condition to get to it. There was a bit of hay, and he brought it to the animal, which started to eat it. He also found a pony in the building, which was in very poor condition, the bones sticking out of its sides; it was eating a little bit of hay on the ground. Witness subsequently went to Mr. Keay’s house, and told him that he had received complaints about the animals in the field —that they had been starved, and had not sufficient water. Witness suggested to defendant that he send someone to the place to see to the animals, and he replied that he would. Witness asked him if he had had a veterinary surgeon or Danks to see them, and he replied in the negative. He said that the animals had had plenty to eat, his man having taken them plenty of hay every day. He promised that someone should see them. The weather was very severe at the time. On the following day witness met Mr. Rose and Police-constable Edwards at the building, and they found that the brown animal which he had seen the night before was dead. Some straw had been taken to the place. Mr. Rose, the veterinary surgeon, said that he would have to make a post-mortem examination. Keay and his man Haynes subsequently came to the place. The little sucker which he had seen the night before looked worse than it did on the previous night, and could not walk without assistance. Witness was present at the post-mortem, and saw that the intestines were practically empty. Witness took defendant and Mr. Rose to Mr. W. Edge’s garden hedge, and there pointed out to them that the ponies had eaten the hedge to the very core. Mr. Keay said to Mr. Rose that his man swore he had given the animals plenty of hay.— Police-constable Edwards gave corroborative evidence, and said that he did not consider that the animals had been properly fed.— Thomas Henry Francis, farmer, Broseley, said that he remembered passing the place referred to and seeing a pony or colt lying down. He tried to get it up, but it did not. He thought it was in very poor condition.— William Head, gardener, Broseley, stated that he noticed one of the horses eat some snow and then fall over, but it got up again. It was, however, weak and low. On another occasion he saw one of the horses on the ground, and it was with difficulty that he got it up. The condition of the animal was very poor. Witness went up the loft once, and only found sufficient hay to make a bird’s nest. He gave information to the police.— Other evidence as to the poor condition of the animals was given by John Legge, kiln hand, Broseley; John Hewlett Matthew, landlord of the Hand and Tankard Inn, Broseley; and Walter Matthews, butcher.—Mr. Rose, veterinary surgeon, stated that he considered the cause of the animals’ deaths was that they did not have a sufficient supply of proper food.— Mr. Hughes said that Mr. Keay had a man to look after these animals who had always been connected with horses. Twice a day he took hay to them. It was, he contended, a serious charge to bring against his client, who was ill at the time, and he maintained that defendant had not permitted any cruelty or suffering to these animals in consequence of non-supply of sufficient food. Such weather as they had had this winter would bring many a horse down.— William Haynes, groom, in the employ of defendant, stated that he was used to horses, and looked after those referred to. He fed them twice a day, taking them plenty of hay night and morning; they would not eat the corn. The animals always had plenty of hay to eat.- Isaac, Haynes, inspector of the R.S.P.A., stated that he had examined these horses some few days previous to the charge, and he could find no fault with them. There was plenty of food, but he had spoken to defendant as to the water arrangement, and he said that they were being watered by hand.- Sidney Knowles, a youth in the employ of defendant, stated that the horses were taken hay every day.— Thomas Davies, retired publican, Broseley, stated that he had often gone on the Mill Field, and had seen the horses have fodder taken to them. Thomas Instone, butcher, Broseley, said that the horses to his knowledge were well looked after. He regarded the colt as a consumptive animal.— Mr. Jas. Martin, veterinary surgeon, Wellington, was called for the defence, but not having seen the colts Mr. Phillips objected to his evidence, this objection being sustained.- John Davies, farmer, Broseley, said that the colt always had a cough, and was never well. The animals were always looked after.- Defendant said that he had kept the King’s Head for 11 years. He was a member of Wenlock Town Council and also of Madeley Board of Guardians. The Mill Field was a bleak, cold piece and since November the ponies had been in this field and they appeared all right. He told his man Haynes to look after the horses. He had plenty of hay; in fact, two stacks were used in two weeks. He had plenty of food in his possession. When he was told that one of the colts could not get up he had it attended to, but it died, as well as the other colt.— The Bench retired, and on returning the Mayor said that they were of opinion that the horses had died of starvation, and defendant would be fined £3 and £6 12s. 6d. costs, in default two months’ imprisonment.- The case against Haynes, who is in the employ of defendant, was withdrawn. — The Court was crowded during the hearing of this case, which occupied five hours, and in which considerable interest was taken.

23rd March 1912


TOWN COUNCIL.— WEDNESDAY. Present:— Councillor J. H. A. Whitley (mayor). Lord Forester, Aldermen A. B. Dyas, W. J. Legge, D. L. Prestage, G. Lloyd, J. Davies, and T. Cooke, Councillors W. Bishop, C. Edwards, G. Forester, W. G. Dyas. T. I. Griffiths, A. A. Exley, W. J. Milner, T. Morris, G. D. Collins, R. Clarke, J. Nicklin, J. Roberts, and Mr. P. H, Potts (town clerk).

THE BROSELEY ROAD.— Alderman Dyas asked the clerk if he had heard anything respecting the Iron-Bridge and Broseley roads_ — The Clerk said that he had asked for a grant of £75 per mile to keep these roads in good repair, and the county clerk had replied that he would duly submit their application to the Roads and Bridges Committee.— Alderman Prestage said that the roads were in a very bad state.


23rd March 1912


COAL STRIKE. — In accordance with the recommendation of the Archbishop of Canterbury and York, and by the expressed wish of the Bishop of Hereford, services of “humble prayer and intercession” were held at both the morning and afternoon services. These were conducted, and special sermons were preached by the Vicar (Rev. W.. A. Terry).

23rd March 1912


PARISH CHURCH.- A handsome brass plate has been erected in the church to the memory of Miss Hilda Devereux Hansen by her sister (Miss C. Hansen) and a few who were very fond of her. The deceased lady, who died in May last, and lies buried in the churchyard near her uncle and aunt, Mr. and Mrs. T. H. Thursfield, late of the Grange, Much Wenlock, was much beloved in the locality for her many good works, and her loss has been keenly felt. The inscription of the brass tablet is as follows:—“To the most loving memory of Lil, Hilda Devereux Hanson, who fell asleep May 21st, 1911. She lived to help others, and was beloved by all who knew her. Erected by a few who loved her very dearly. Many waters cannot quench love, neither can the floods drown it.’”


23rd March 1912


P.S.A.— The usual meeting was hold on Sunday in the Congregational Chapel. Mr. J. E. Hartshorne (president) occupied the chair, and carried out the devotional part of the service. There was a fairly good attendance. The Rev. I. Brentnall. (Dawley) delivered an able address on “True Patriotism”, Miss Taylor (Iron-Bridge) gave a fine exposition of the solos, “The Heavenly Song” and “Our Blest Redeemer”. Mr. J. A. Hartshorne presided at the organ. A collection was taken in aid of the National Brotherhood funds.

MEN’S OWN.— On Sunday afternoon a service for men only was held in the Parish Church by the Rev. A. C. Howell, B.A. (rector), who also delivered an excellent address on “Temptation”. Mr. J. L. Milne (lay reader) read the lesson. There was a good attendance, which included a few members of the choir, whose vocal efforts proved a valuable acquisition. Special hymns were sung, Mr. Walter Davis pre-siding at the organ.

A CALL TO PRAYER.— This was the heading of a notice, issued by the Rev. A. C. Howell (rector) in reference to a service of intercession held in the Parish Church on Sunday evening, to which the Rector urged all parishioners to come and seek by prayer for God’s guidance and help in the present crisis. The choral service was taken by the Rector, who also preached an able sermon. The musical portion of the service was admirably rendered by the choir, under the direction of Mr. W. H. Griffiths (choirmaster). Miss Hilda, Watkis, L.R.A.M., presided at the organ. There was a large congregation.

A NEW ZEALAND WEDDING.— At: St. Alban’s Church, Mount Roskill, Auckland, New Zealand, on February 7th. Miss Elizabeth Gittings (youngest daughter of Mr. and Mrs. W. Gittings of Caughley House, Broseley) was married to Mr. Arthur Hudson (second son of the late Mr. W. Hudson and Mrs. Hudson of Barnett’s Hill, Broseley). The bride, who was given away by Mr. R. Porter (formerly of Wolverhampton), wore a white lawn dress and tulle veil under a wreath of orange blossom, and carried a large shower bouquet of white carnations and roses. The bridesmaids, Miss Hilda Rowlands and Miss Amy Porter, wore cream silk dresses with hats to match and gold brooches (the gifts of the bridegroom), and carried coloured shower bouquets. Mr. James Bennett (formerly of Barnett’s Hill, Broseley) was best man. After the wedding a reception was held at Mrs. Porter’s, Coneybury, Brixton Road, Mount Roskill.

VESTRY MEETING.— A general meeting of ratepayers was held in the Town Hall on Thursday evening for the purpose of appointing churchwardens and auditors (in connection with the Church and Town Hall accounts) and nominating overseers for the ensuing year. The Rev. A. C. Howell (rector) occupied the chair. The Rector again chose Dr. Collins as his warden, and on the proposition of Mr. A. E. Wiggins, seconded by Mr. Arthur Smith, Mr. J. A. Downes were re-elected people’s warden. Messrs. A. Scott and H. E. Clark were re-appointed as auditors. The following were nominated as overseers, out of which number the magistrates will select two to serve the office:— Messrs. E. S. White (Broseley). W. Meredith (Jackfield). A. M. Williams (Broseley). W. H. Smith (Jackfield), W. Kenyon, (Broseley), and W, E. Price (Jackfield). Rector proposed a hearty vote of thanks to the churchwardens for the excellent services rendered by them during the past year, which was seconded by Mr. H. E. Clark and carried nem. con. A vote of thanks proposed by Mr. H. E. Clark, and seconded by Mr. A. E. Wiggins, was also given to the churchwardens for the great improvement made in the churchyard by their instructions and supervision. Mr. H. E. Clark proposed a vote of thanks to the choirmaster (Mr. W. H. Griffiths) and choir for the services rendered by them during the past year, which was seconded by Mr. E. Oakes, and carried unanimously. A cordial vote of thanks passed to the auditors and overseers. The Rector, in referring to the finances of the church, said that they were more than paying their ordinary expenses, but there were certain matters requiring attention which he considered should have been done years ago, but they required money. He also spoke in favour of a more expeditious mode of delivering the mails to Broseley and an earlier despatch, more particularly on Sundays, the present method, he said, necessitating so much Sunday labour at the Post Office and preventing the officials attending the church services. The matter was discussed by Dr. Collins, Mr. H. E. Clark, and others, and the Rector was instructed to write the usual authorities with a view of obtaining an earlier despatch on Sundays.

23rd March 1912


MINIMUM WAGE BILL INTRODUCED. The joint conferences between the coalowners and the miners having failed to arrive at a settlement of the coal dispute. Mr. Asquith last weekend promised to bring in a Minimum Wage Bill, and this he did on Tuesday, the Bill passing its second reading on Thursday, as reported in the proceedings of Parliament in another column.

The Parliamentary Correspondent of “The Times”, commenting on the situation says: The passage of the Bill is regarded as a fore-gone conclusion, but the Cabinet have definitely resolved not to accept the amendments sought by the Miners’ Federation. They are determined to remain firm in this attitude, and this being so it remains doubtful how far the miners will accept the measure, when passed, as a settlement. Owing to the number of amendments which have been put down it is thought likely that the Lords will not have the bill before them till Monday. In Ministerial circles on Thursday evening, in view of the Cabinet’s refusal to accept the miners’ amendments, the view was taken that while in some districts a number of the men would probably begin to return to the pits as soon as the Bill is passed a general resumption of work was not to be expected until Easter.

It is three weeks since the colliers laid down their tools, and consequently the strike is having a very serious effect throughout the country as not only are the miners at play, but many thousands of workers in other industries are temporarily thrown out of employment through lack of coal, and the distress, especially in the poorer quarters of the large towns, is very acute.

A meeting of local miners was held at Oakengates on Monday. Mr. Alfred Hoggins presided, and said that although victory seemed before them it would have been more satisfactory to have secured it by other means than by Act of Parliament. Both coalowners and men stood firm to their own views on the principle of the recognition of the minimum wage, hence it had been found necessary for the Government to step in. — Mr. William Latham (local agent) gave an exhaustive review of the situation, and a report of the recent conferences and negotiations that had taken place in London on the minimum wage question. He strongly resented the charge that had been made against them that it was a selfish strike. He asked, were not the coalowners selfish? The miners, in their desire to secure justice, had shown that they were not selfish; if they had been those miners in the English federated area (where the principle of the minimum wage had been conceded) might have said that they would go to work and leave Wales and Scotland to look after themselves, but they went in for a national settlement of the question, and they had the sympathy of other trades unions with them, as was evidenced by a letter (which he read to the meeting) conveying a resolution passed at a meeting of the Wellington Branch of the Amalgamated Society of Railway Servants, containing a resolution expressing the congratulations of the meeting to the miners on the stand they had taken for the minimum wage, wishing them every success in their efforts, and calling upon railway men to assist them in their endeavours to establish the principle of a minimum wage. Mr. Latham also spoke on the details of the minimum wage for the Shropshire coalfields, particulars of which have already been published.— Reference was made to the few men working at Madeley colliery in order to keep the Bliss’s Hill furnaces going, and it was stated that an assurance had been given that no coal should be raised at all for selling purposes. A resolution of confidence in the federation leaders was passed, and Mr. Latham was thanked for his report.

In order to restrict as far as possible the dislocation of traffic caused by the strike, some of the large railway companies have been securing supplies of fuel from provincial coal merchants, and substantial orders have been placed by one company with Mr. Alfred Morris, Market Street, Shrewsbury.

During the present week the position in Shropshire mining areas has considerably changed, for the people have felt, with steadily increasing dismay, all the penalties attached to cessation of work and the want of wages. In the agricultural localities which form preponderating portion, the paramount difficulties have been those of obtaining coal, and the limitation of railway transit. This has greatly interfered with the attendance at the various markets, and the disposal of produce, but, so far as firing is concerned, the abundance of wood in all rural neighbourhoods has greatly diminished the discomfiture from the scarcity of coal. Herein is the terrible irony of the situation, for it is in those places under whose surface there is coal of great abundance, that the fire-grates are empty, and the inhabitants have realised the keenness of the wintry weather of the last few days. The attitude of the miners themselves has perceptibly altered. Without entering into the merits of the matter at all, there cannot be the slightest doubt that it has been simply loyalty to the Federation that has kept the Shropshire men out of the pits so long, but now there is an almost yearning desire among them to return to work. Large numbers of them openly confess that so far as they are concerned the new Bill now before Parliament will bring them very little if any increased benefit under its present provisions, and they would gladly respond to the signal to go back to their toil. That unfortunate section of the mining community who, from various reasons, found it impossible to make any provision for themselves, and who have had nothing but the meagre strike pay for subsistence, know what it is to have all the agonies of privation and hunger thrust upon them. This has afforded many opportunities for the exercise of a charitable disposition among those whose means have permitted them to show it, but only the more acute cases of poverty could be dealt with. In the Oakengates district—and this is typical of many others— help has been rendered by the officials of the various churches, without distinction, while among the private philanthropists may be mentioned County Councillor Enoch Latham and Mrs. Latham, who have distributed soup twice a week, while Mr. Albert Lowe of the George Hotel St. George’s, has given tickets for bread to deserving poor. At Hadley, through the generosity of Messrs. Blockley and Mr. S. Marshall, the children of the workmen employed at the Brick and Tile Works (which have been temporarily closed through want of fuel) have been liberally supplied with soup; and instances of generosity of this description have happily been numerous throughout the county. At the Shropshire Iron Works (The Trench) through the kindly consideration of Colonel Patchett and the Company the men on Saturday were each advanced a sum of money, to he repaid when the men are enjoying full occupation; and, needless to say, the concession has not only been greatly appreciated, but is also likely to be gratefully remembered. Mr. T. Crump of Hadley has distributed bread. Among concerns which have had to close through the scarcity of coal is the Clee Hill railway, as the Company under existing circumstances are unable to guarantee the delivery of stone from the different quarries, and the railway men are taking their holidays now instead of in the summer. All the brickworks in the neighbourhood of Madeley and Lightmoor have been closed.

The conditions at Shrewsbury arising out of the coat strike have not up to the present reached that stage which would warrant the Mayor of the Borough (Mayor C.R.B. Wing-field) calling together his special committee to provide relief for the poorer classes. There is still a fair stock of coal at the yards of the coal merchants, but prices are prohibitive so far as many among the working classes are concerned, and assistance in this direction has been forthcoming from the Mayor and other local residents, who have generously sent into the town large quantities of wood for free distribution. The Mayor himself has forwarded nine loads, Mr. Sparrow (Albrighton Hall) two loads, Mr. C. E. Jenkins (Cruckton) five loads, and Mr. H. F. Rogers (Oakley Manor) has placed at the disposal of those who are in want of fuel two large piles of wood at Sutton Lane. Mr. W. G. Phillips of Berwick Hall and Mr. Humphrey Sandford of the Isle have also promised to supply wood if necessary. Should the position become more acute, it is proposed to have the supplies distributed on more systematic lines than at present.

In many districts no concerns have been harder hit than gasworks. At Madeley the inhabitants have had to resort to primitive means of illumination, owing to the shortness of coal at the gasworks, and smaller Gas Companies have been faced with a similar difficulty. The gas consumers of Wellington need have no fears of a restricted supply, at any rate for some 6 to 8 weeks to come. The directors of the local company have been watching the trend of affairs in the coal world, and quite a considerable time back acquired such reserves as would suffice to carry on the works through a long strike period. In many places it has been found necessary to warn consumers of gas to economise as far as possible. The Wellington consumers can make what demands are necessary for cooking, heating, power, and lighting without jeopardising the supply in any way. The cause of the poor light on Wednesday was that one of the retorts developed a fracture during the process of coal distillation, and was in no way connected with the coal strike as many people imagined.

A meeting of members of the Wellington Branch of the Amalgamated Society of Rail-way Servants was held on Sunday, when the following resolution was carried:— “That this meeting congratulates the miners in making such a stand for the minimum wage, wishes them every success in their efforts, and calls upon railwaymen to assist them in their en-deal ours to establish the principle.” The resolution was read at a subsequent meeting of miners at Oakengates, and was received with cheers.

If the Madeley Wood Company blow out the Blists Hill Furnaces, as it is rumoured they intend to do, many in the Madeley district will regret the coal strike, as it is estimated that 250 hands will be thrown out of employment.

The closing of ten brickworks in the Iron-Bridge district has added 500 people more to the unemployed army, and many families are now feeling the effects of the strike very acutely.

During the existence of the strike only a few hands will be kept going at the Jack-field Encaustic Tile Works, and it is very much feared that good orders will be lost to the district. There is not the slightest doubt that there are families who will be unable to recover themselves.

During the week the pit-mounds in the Madeley district have been occupied with men, women, and children, who toiled hard for the “slack”, which some years go was  discarded, and many are picking up a good week’s wage by their sales, which are proving a god-send to the people.


The first story of shop-looting owing to the strike in the North Wales Coalfields comes from Rhos, near Wrexham. The food carried off included 150lb. of sugar, a large number of eggs, a quantity of bacon, flour, &c. There had been no arrests up to the hour of going to press.

30th March 1912


THE SCHOOL.— The children attending the Broseley Wood Infants’ School received the prizes given by the Local Education Authority for regular attendance on Thursday afternoon, ending the year ending December 31st last, the attendance was very good, the high percentage of 93 for the whole year being attained. Mrs. Prestage, who was accompanied by Alderman D. L. Prestage, and Miss Collins, distributed the prizes, and afterwards addressed the children upon the importance of regular attendance and punctuality, her remarks being listened to with great attention. The children expressed their thanks by hearty clapping, and the proceedings ended with the National Anthem. The first 13 children named below made perfect attendances, and the other over, 95 per cent.:— Tom Watkins, Harry Watkins, Ralph Green, Willie Thomas, Frank Minton, Harold Anthony, Cecil Legge, Harold Brown, John Jones, Nellie Gittings, Linda Tench, Edith Griffiths, Gladys Hall, John Parry, Edward Shaw, Bertie Rowe, Leonard Walmsley, James Lister, Ben Thompson, Leonard Hill, Ronald Malyneaux, Ben Kitson, Percy Gough, Thom Morris, Geo. Edwards, Tom Smith, Albert Owen, Reggie Davis, James Hall, John Hatton, Arthur Gittings, Geoffrey Garbett, Frank Kitson, Leonard Tart, Arthur Templar, Hattie Tonkiss, May Hewson, Doris Garbett, Esther Perks, Jennie Davis, Nancy Dewstone, Annie Taylor, Lily Evans, Kelly Shaw, Gladys Dudley, Drusilla Potts, Evelyn Edwards, Fanny Garbett, Lucy Roden.


P.S.A.— The usual meeting was held on Sunday in the Congregational Chapel. The Rev. W. S. Hall (vice-president) occupied the chair, and carried out the devotional part of the service. Mr. Doodson (Coalbrookdale) gave an interesting address, and special hymns were sung, Mr. J. A. Hartshorne presiding at the organ.

CONFIRMATION.— Bishop Mather, on behalf of the Bishop of Hereford, administered the rite of confirmation in the Parish Church on Monday. Amongst the clergy present were:— The Revs. A. C. Howell (rector), W. A. Terry (vicar of Benthall), and J. W. Reeder (curate of Willey). The number of candidates was 42 —Broseley 23, Barrow and Willey 15, and Benthall 4. The congregation was a very large one, and the whole service most impressive. The Bishop addressed the candidates both before and after the laying on of hands.

THE CHURCH SCHOOLS.— The prizes for attendance given by the Wenlock Education Committee were distributed at these schools on Friday last week by Mrs. D. L Prestage. Miss Downes, Miss Collins, Alderman Prestage (chairman of the School Attendance Committee), and Messrs. J. A. Downes, G. D. Collins, and W. Francis (school managers) were also present. Before the prizes were distributed, an explanation was given of the system adopted in allotting the prizes, and emphasis was laid on the fact that the double qualification of regularity and punctuality was necessary to secure a prize. Evidence of regularity was shown by the fact that nearly half the boys obtained a prize, although the percentage required was 98, while the percentage of punctuality for the whole school for the past year was 99.7. Among the prize-winners the following boys were neither late nor absent:— Wm. Garbett (five years), Arthur Tonkis and Arthur Wilde (4 years), Percy Dixon, Herbert Bangham, Thos. Goodall, Jas. Hall, and Wm. Hayward (3 years), Chas. Preece, Wm. Owen, Hector Smith, Wm. Jones, John Roberts, Cyril Ball, Cecil Wilde, Cyril Morris, Arthur Meredith, Thos. Roberts, and Sidney Smith (2 years), George Wase, Richard Rivers, Ed. Gainham, Baden Britton, Harold Bowen, Chas. Shuker, Cecil Gittens, John Felton, Sidney Hill, Wilshaw Weekes, Leonard Felton, John Watson, Percy Evans, Abram Britton, Wm. Meredith, and Leslie Gallier (1 year). In the girl’s department 22 prizes were awarded for model attendance, and 42 for regularity. The girls who made perfect attendance were: Nellie Bentley and Elsie May Legge (6 years), Alice Lears (4 years), Louie Price, Nellie Davis, Nellie Fry, and Winnie Gittings (3 years), Agnes Gough, Louie Garbett, Gwendoine Gittings, Annie Wilkes, Doris Minton, Nancy Butler. and Olive Davis (two years), Emily Gough, Edna Felton, Effie Garbett, Bessie Preece, Alice Humphries, Emily Whalley. Annie Lears, and Dorothy Green (1 year). In the Infants’ School perfect attendances were made by John Evans (3 years), Annie George and Jessie Harris (2 years), Donald Rowe, Wm. Barber, Wm. Pearce, Edith Gough, Sarah Preece, Lottie Gittings, Brenda Colley, Sarah J. Harris, Annie Gallier, Nellie Hall, Alice Gittings, and Selina Harris (one year).


Before Councillor J. H A. Whitley (Mayor), Captain Geo. Forester, Dr. G. D. Collings, Aldermen A. B. Dyas and D. L. Prestage, and Mr. E. W. Shorting.

SLEEPING OUT.— Reuben Davies, drover, Broseley, was charged by Police-constable Reeves with sleeping out, and was sentenced to seven days’ imprisonment.— Francis Smith, an old Broseley offender, was charged by the same officer with sleeping out, and was sentenced to one month’s imprisonment with hard labour


30th March 1912


CONSIDERATE EMPLOYERS.-With characteristic thoughtfulness for the well-being of their employees, Messrs. Maw and Co. are making advances in money to the married workpeople (male and female) during the coal strike, the amount to be repaid by easy instalments on resumption of work



The passing of the Miners’ Minimum Wage Bill by Parliament is the first definite step in the direction of hastening the end of the great coal strike, which has thrown practically the whole of the industries of the country into a state of chaos, and inflicted untold misery in the homes of thousands of the poorer classes.

The coalowners’ representatives in London met on Wednesday, and recommended the owners generally, in spite of their objection to the measure, to make every endeavour to give effect to its provisions; whilst the same day the conference of the Miners’ Federation resolved after a sharp division of opinion to take an immediate ballot of the miners as to whether they were in favour of resuming work pending a settlement of the minimum rates of wages in the various grades by the district boards to be appointed under the Act.

A Press Association telegram last night states that Mr. Ashton, the miner’s general secretary, advises the men to vote for the resumption of work.

In the most favourable circumstances it is expected that the general strike must continue until Easter, although individual pits may be reopened in the meantime. If when the ballot returns are received on Wednesday next week it is found that a majority of the men are in favour of resuming work, it will not be possible to get them back into the pits until the following week. If, on the other hand, the majority should vote against returning to work until the local minimum rates are fixed, there is a prospect that the struggle may be prolonged for four or five weeks.

In certain parts of Scotland large numbers of miners have already returned to work.

Last weekend several hundreds of colliers resumed operations at the Brynkinallt Mines at Chirk, the bulk of the coal raised being acquired by the Great Western Railway Co. The proprietors of the colliery have not joined the coalowners’ federation, but most of the men are members of the North Wales Miners’ Association. The wages paid to the colliers before the strike were at the minimum rate claimed for the district in the schedule, and the men are now being paid at the same rate. So content were the men with their lot that they joined the strike most reluctantly. They were among the last of the colliers to leave the pits, just as they have now been among the first to return. About 400 of the strikers who still remain out marched on Wednesday to the colliery to ask the reason why the pits were opened. They were well armed with a variety of cudgels, including rails lifted from fences and branches of trees, and made a formidable and menacing spectacle. The nine policemen who remained at the colliery through the night had been reinforced by 40 constables who were posted in the pit-yard. A deputation of the strikers were received by Mr. Craig, the head of the firm, who made it clear to them that, as long as the men wanted to work, he must keep the pit open. He said he certainly would not stop the pit so long as men chose to come. The deputation returned to the waiting crowd, and repeated what Mr. Craig had said to them. The spokesman said that Mr. Craig had made it clear to them that he had not persuaded his men to return to work, but that they came back of their own accord. There were repeated calls for the local delegate of the Brynkinallt employees to the North Wales Miners’ Association, but on being assured that he was not about the strikers returned to Cefn.

On Wednesday night a detachment of Infantry detrained at Preesgweene, a station within a distance of two miles from the Brynkinallt Colliery. The guard consisted of half a company of the King’s Shropshire Light Infantry, under the command of Captain Atcheson, which was despatched from Shrewsbury on the order of the Home Secretary. The soldiers marched from Preesgweene to Chirk and were accommodated in Brynkinallt Park. They were fully supplied with food and ammunition.

Orders were issued for the 3rd Suffolk Regiment to leave Aldershot on Wednesday night for Shrewsbury and the 4th Royal Fusiliers for Lichfield. The 5th and 6th Royal Brigades at Aldershot were ordered to stand to, and be ready to leave at any moment.

The first of the ballots to be taken among the miners on the question whether there shall be an immediate resumption of work was held on Thursday at Chirk. About 350 men voted, and the majority was in the proportion of nearly five to two in favour of a return to work.

Although a number of owners had announced that their pits would be re-opened on Thursday there was a very poor response on the part of the colliers, and it is doubtful whether more than a few hundred additional men returned to work. As a body the men seem decided to remain on strike until the result of the ballot is known and the Federation has sanctioned a return to work.

During the week there have been serious riots in the Cannock Chase coalfield, and considerable wanton damage has been done by the strikers to colliery property.

Shropshire fully shares the satisfaction of the more hopeful outlook, and the prospect of an early termination of the Gargantuan struggle. It will be seen from detailed ac-counts elsewhere that in those districts in which the want of work has been keenest felt various commendable methods of assisting the people have been adopted. In many of the mining localities permission has been given for them to get such fuel as they could from the accumulated mounds of abandoned pits, and these have been picked and shovelled with frantic energy during the last few days. “He must needs go whom the devil drives,” and there are few fiercer fiends or less relentless taskmasters than Starvation. Such casual coal-getting as that referred to has not been without its reward, for in some places, considerable quantities have been extracted from what appeared to be only the useless and unsightly accretions of the past. It is also creditable to the various religious denominations, Brotherhoods, Sisterhoods, and similar organisations that they have been exerting themselves on behalf of those who have been most in need of assistance. A good many people, quite as philanthropic as anybody else, feared that such help to the miner might prolong his inclination to continue the strike; but the bitter cry of the wives and children could not go unheeded. It is pleasurable to be able to record the perpetuated peaceableness of the strike so far as the men themselves are concerned. In Shropshire, as elsewhere, colliers in isolated places have returned to work, and this has led to a little quiet picketing and harmless palaver between representatives of the federation and the masters; but beyond providing evanescent excitement for a few vigilant policemen and two or three expectant reporters nothing of moment has occurred.

At a meeting of Wellington Board of Guardians, on Thursday, the chairman (Mr. E. Holmes) stated that acting upon the instructions of the Board, and a suggestion made by the Local Government Board Inspector for the district, the master of the workhouse had secured a quantity of wood so that any applicants for relief, who were willing to work, might he given temporary employment in cutting up the wood, and receiving payments for it. Since then a copy of the following resolution had been received from the Oakengates Urban Council:— “That this Council urges upon the Wellington, Shifnal, and Newport Boards of Guardians to hold a meeting with all possible speed to consider the great distress in this urban district, owing to the miners’ strike, and suggests that they hold such meeting in this immediate industrial centre, to avoid the necessitous poor travelling to either Wellington, Shifnal, or Newport.” He (the Chairman of the Board), thought that that would be a very difficult matter to carry out, but as the resolution had been passed, and sent on to them for their consideration, it was their duty to express some opinion upon it. He had also received a letter from a clergyman on the same subject, and he wrote and told that gentlemen what they had done with the consent of the Local Government Board, and also that if any genuine applications for work came to them they world try to find some employment for them. He, however, believed, that no application had yet been received.— Mr. Frost (master): Not one.— Mr. T. Taylor said that neither the urban nor the rural members of the Board needed to be reminded of their duties by a resolution of the kind sent to them from Oakengates; and he thought that the Oakengates Urban Council should be informed that the Wellington Guardians were quite capable of attending to their own business. (Hear, hear).— Mr R. Cadman said that he did not think that resolution represented the feeling of the whole of the members of the Oakengates Council.— Mr Manning said that he had been making systematic inquiries relative to the condition of the poor in the mining portion of their area, and he found that a great deal was being done by voluntary effort, and in no instance could distress be said to have become actually acute. Four specific applications for relief had been made to him, but he found on going to the houses that in three of them there appeared sufficient plain food for immediate requirements, and in the fourth a woman was chopping up boiled eggs to feed the birds they kept. (Laughter). The result of his own investigations in the neighbourhood of Oakengates was that, owing to voluntary effort, matters were not nearly so bad as some people had represented them to be.— Mr. Brothwod said that in Oakengates, Hadley, Ketley, and other contiguous places, arrangements had been made to feed the children daily. He thought that each district should look after itself.— Mr. Austin asked if the applications for out-relief had been at all abnormal, and the Clerk said that they had not; nor had the applications for admission to the house. A letter was read from the Clerk to the Shifnal Guardians asking what course the Board intended to take with reference to the Oakengates resolution.— It was agreed that Oakengates Council and the Shifnal Guardians be informed that the Board intended to look after its own poor, and would leave other authorities to do the same.

The miners at the Most Hall Colliery, near Hanwood, resumed work on Monday. They are non-union men. There has been no attempt to interfere with them in any way.

A public meeting, convened by Alderman A. B. Dyas (ex-mayor), was held at Madeley on Monday to consider what steps should be taken to alleviate the distress amongst the families of those who were destitute through the strike. The Rev. E. Bulstrode Pryce (vicar) presided over a meagre attendance. —Alderman Dyas said that he had called the meeting, not that there was immediate distress, but he thought it was no use waiting until the wolf was at their doors, but that they should be ready to take action. He had a fund in hand from an old relief fund opened 30 years ago, amounting to over £8. The Mayor of Wenlock (Councillor J. H. A. Whitley) and Sir C. S. Henry, M.P., had promised help in the matter. (Applause.) People working at other industries were suffering, and, as for the colliers, he believed that some would be glad to get to work again,  but ‘‘they were afraid of their necks”.— Mr. W. Ward said that there were cases of acute distress in the district — not particularly among the miners, but among other people affected by the strike.— Dr. Droop expressed the opinion that by assisting the colliers, who had their strike pay, they would probably prolong the strike.— Alderman Dyas said that he was sorry for the poor people thrown out of work through the blowing out of the furnaces, and he could see nothing but the workhouse staring them in the face.— The Vicar stated that only those people who were suffering through the strike would be relieved.— A committee to collect subscriptions was appointed.

At Ironbridge on Monday a public meeting was held to appoint a committee to collect funds and arrange for relieving those in need of assistance. Mr. T. Parker presided over a good attendance.- Mr. J. W. White, who had called the meeting, explained the position of the Coalbrookdale and Iron-Bridge Relief Committee.— The Chairman condemned the action of the colliers, adding that people of other industries were in a worse condition than the miners. The miners, he said, had had a grievance for some time, and fostered it until they decided on this terribly mistaken step, and in 12 months’ time they would all regret this step. This action of the colliers meant the destruction of democracy. They must, however, help the innocent and starving. (Applause.) He received telegrams from Sir Chas. S. Henry and Captain Forester offering to subscribe to the scheme.— Mr. W. S. Malcolm (managing director of the Coalbrookdale Works re-marked that there was no distress in Coalbrookdale. He also thought that there should have been more notice given of the present meeting.— After a great deal of discussion the Rev. W. Hamlyn proposed that the existing committee be asked to undertake the collection of funds and arrange for the relief of those in need of assistance in Iron-Bridge, and that the fund in the hands of the committee form a nucleus of the fund.— Mr. T. D. Thomas seconded the motion, which was carried.

A special meeting of Oakengates Urban Council was held on Monday to consider the great distress in the district owing to the strike. The Chairman (Mr. C. Woodhouse) said that some people considered it the duty of the Council to see what they could do to alleviate the distress. What had been done by the religious bodies was very commend-able, and they as a Council representing various shades of opinion ought to do some-thing in the matter.— Mr. R. L. Corbett said that it was the duty of the Guardians primarily to whom the distressed had the right to apply for relief. In regard to the Provision of Meals Act, he had seen Mr. Wale, who had informed him that before anything could be done the County Council would have to be called together.— Mr. Teece said that, as a Guardian, he should do his utmost for the distressed.— Mr. A. Hoggins said that the parents of two-thirds of the children at Wrockwardine Wood were either on strike or were affected by it. He understood that steps were being taken on behalf of the Education Committee for the feeding of the school children.— Mr. F. A. Maddock, C.C., said that if they had to wait for the County Council there would probably be another strike. He asked them not to rely on the County Council, or else the poor children would be dead. He thought that it would be wise to approach the Guardians, so that something could be done immediately. In his opinion it was useless to start a voluntary fund.— Mr. G. Davies said that he was as loyal as any man; but if they could put on a penny rate for Coronation festivities, they ought to be able to put on a similar rate for the feeding of the poor children. The idea was that the County Council had started at the wrong end in appointing special constables to break heads; he believed in relieving hunger before breaking heads. He suggested that they employ some of the unemployed men to break stone.— Mr. R. L. Corbett moved “That this Council urges upon the Wellington, Shifnal, and Newport Boards of Guardians to hold a meeting with all possible speed to consider the great distress prevalent in this district owing to the miners’ strike, and suggests that they hold such meeting in this immediate industrial centre to avoid the necessitous poor having to travel either to Wellington, Shifnal, or Newport.” - Mr. P. A. Maddocks, seconded.- Mr. S. Wixon thought that such a resolution was a reflection upon the Guardians. — Mr. G. Davies said that he wanted to give work and not charity.— The motion was carried.— Mr. George Davies proposed that the Council employ a number of men (not being in receipt of strike pay) two days per week to break cinders, and that preference be given to married men with families.— Mr. Hoggins seconded.— The Surveyor said that he could find work at the Donnington Wood cinder hill.— The motion was carried, and it was decided to pay the usual rate of wages, three shillings per day.-Mr. R. L. Corbett proposed “That this Council appeals to persons resident in the urban district, who are in a position to do so, to undertake to give breakfasts or dinners to six or more children each day, and that they ascertain from the schools the names of the necessitous children of those who are not in receipt of strike or lock-out pay”. Mr. Corbett said that he would willingly take the first six.— Mr. F. A. Maddocks seconded.— Mr. Davies said that the Council ought to do something as a body, and suggested that they provide soup-kitchens in various parts of the district.— Mr. Hoggins said that what had already been done in the district in providing free breakfasts was commendable, and he thought it would be more effectual and practical if they were to assist those already engaged in that work.— Mr. Corbett’s motion was carried.

On Monday a mass meeting of the Lilleshall Company’s miners was held at Oakengates. Mr. C. Matthews (district treasurer) presided, and said that they had had that morning an interview with the officials of the Lilleshall Company on matters of important business, and it was for the men to decide what should be done in relation to it. Referring to the miners’ allowance coal, he said that coal was being drawn for the men, and he thought that the company were anxious to draw all the coal that was due to the miners, if the men were willing to get it.— Mr. Alfred Hoggins (district president) said that at the request of a number of the officials of the various lodges a deputation was arranged to meet the officials of the company in order to ascertain the truth or otherwise of the rumours that were prevalent in regard to the raising of coal for other purposes than supplying the miners’ coal. He had seen Mr. Greene, and he assured him (Mr. Hoggins) that the rumours were incorrect, and that there had not gone one pound of coal for any other purpose than was agreed upon by their agent (Mr. W. Latham). They had received a resolution from the Blast Furnacemen’s Association asking for the same concession to be made for the furnacemen in relation to their house coals (which were due) as had been made in relation to the miners. He said that the furnacemen were in full sympathy with them, and hoped the miners would be victors in the fight. They were fellow trades unionists, and he (Mr. Hoggins) believed that they were strongly in sympathy with them, and he appealed to them to grant to the blast-furnacemen the concession they had asked for, viz., to go to the pit and draw sufficient coal to supply the furnacemen’s coal. On the question being put to the vote, it was decided by a large majority not to grant the concession asked for. The Lilleshall Company wanted to know why they could not do the same for them as had been done at Madeley in regard to raising coal to keep their furnaces going, and promised that not one pound of coal should be sold; the company asked for this so that they could be ready when a settlement was reached, and that they would not make any coke until a settlement had been arrived at.— It was unanimously decided not to allow any coal to be raised, only what was required for the miners themselves.— It was reported that certain stallmen had been engaged at the Freehold Pits (Donningion Wood Colliery) in clearing the roads, which he (Mr. Hoggins) believed were in a dreadful condition, and that the general opinion of the men was that such work should only be done by daywork men, who usually performed such work. It was resolved to ask that the stallmen should be stopped, and that the proper roadmen carry out the work.- In reviewing the general situation, Mr. Hoggins said that Shropshire was to have a District Board of its own, instead of being connected with the Midlandland Federation, and it would be for them to say what the minimum wage should be for the district.— A resolution was passed expressing the great appreciation of the meeting of the good work done by the Oakengates Brotherhood in providing free breakfasts for necessitous children.

It was stated in the meeting that a number of non-union men had gone to work at Mr. R. Cadman`s pits at Ketley Bank, and the men on leaving the meeting proceeded in a body up to the pit. Here they were met by Inspector Jones and a number of police officers, and the Inspector informed the men that Mr. Cadman would have all possible protection to work his pits. A deputation, consisting of Messrs. B. Dallis, Hayward, and Addison, was appointed to wait upon the non-union men when they left the pit. Superintendent Fulcher and other police went to the pit, and much local excitement prevailed. Mr. Cadman, in reply to the deputation, declined to close his pit; the men had expressed a desire to go to work, and the pit was open to them to do so. Later in the evening Mr. Cadman told a JOURNAL representative that the men were starving, and that if they came to work he intended to keep the mine open for them, as they had ample police protection, and all was quiet.

Another mass meeting of miners was held at Oakengates on Thursday, when Mr. A. Hoggins presided over a crowded meeting. He said that he was disappointed with what they had got, but they should make the best of it, and he thought it was their business to accept the bill.—Mr. W. Latham (agent) said that the question now was whether they should resume work. (Cries of “No.”). He said that the moment for excitement had gone. For the first time in their history Parliament was going to govern and control the wages of the workmen. There was not a more law-abiding citizen than the miner; the way they had conducted themselves had simply staggered the world, and he was proud of the class to which he belonged. They had been given an Act of Parliament, and though they might not like it, rather than be defeated by poverty, and shot down by soldiers, they would take it. Though the Act was not what they desired, it was the best they could get with a limited number of Labour members and supporters of labour. Speaking of the ballot, he said that it was not to be taken in order to ascertain whether they would accept the act, but whether they would resume work or not. There would be a lively time in this district if the new district board did not give them the minimum wage, which in that district would be 7s. per day.— Mr. John Bayley, County Councillor, of Wellington, speaking on the creation of district boards, said that these boards would be in honour bound to do what was right and fair to masters and men, and he sincerely trusted that this great matter would be settled immediately. He knew a great deal about the work of the miner, and knew that the introduction of inexperienced labour in mines had done a great deal towards bringing down wages. What was being asked was in his opinion a very moderate schedule, and if it did not pay, then, he said, they might put up the price of coal a little, so that the miners may have a fair just and reasonable wage. He believed in curing industrial diseases without strikes but in this case they had been driven to it. He should now like to see all the men return to work, but he asked them to fight peacefully and calmly to the end. He would like to see the “five and two” in the bill, but to him it seemed absolutely impossible for the boards to make that figure less. (Applause).— It was decided to accept the report of the agent, and to make arrangements for the local ballot.

Mr. Samuel Atherton, who employs the majority of miners now on strike in the Han-wood district, is allowing the villagers to collect sticks from the Bleachfield Woods owned by him. He has placed no restrictions whatever on the people, and large numbers of women and children have carried off piles of firewood every day since the strike commenced. His kindness is greatly appreciated by the villagers, who would have been entirely without fuel but for this generous concession.

The Cambrian Woollen Mills at Newtown closed on Wednesday owing to shortage of coal.

Lord Harlech has opened his park to the poor of Oswestry to enable them to pick wood. Lord Powis is also allowing, the poorer inhabitants of Welshpool to take timber from his woods, and to the cottagers and tenants on his estate he is selling coal from a reserve stock at prices prevailing before the strike.

By the Duke of Sutherland’s orders wood has been distributed amongst the cottagers on the Lilleshall estate during the week.

The men employed at Moat Hall Colliery pits, Annscroft, near Shrewsbury, non-union men, returned to work on Monday. The other pits in the neighbourhood continue to be closed.

The G.W.R. and L. and N.W. Railway Companies owing to the continuance of the strike cannot afford the usual facilities for travel during the Easter holiday period. Excursion, week-end, Saturday to Monday, market, pleasure party, and other cheap tickets will not be issued.

6th April 1912


By a majority of 42,998 the members of the Miners’ Federation of Great Britain have declared against resuming work pending a settlement of the minimum rates of wages by the district boards to be appointed under the Mines (Minimum Wage) Act. The Executive Committee of the Federation, after long deliberation on Thursday, resolved to submit the question of a return to work to a National Conference to be held in London to-day (Saturday), with a recommendation added in favour of a resumption.

The figures of the ballot give the following results.— number of Federation member 588,000, number of votes recorded 445,024 against resuming work 244,011, in favour of resuming work 201,013; majority against resuming 42,998. In the ballot which was taken in January on the question of giving notice, 561,522 men voted. Of these 455,801 were in favour of giving notice and 115,721 against. Little more than 50 per cent., therefore, of those who were prepared to strike in January are now anxious to continue the strike.

The number of miners at work is growing daily. The South Wales coalowners threw open their pits on Thursday, and preparation are being made in various other districts for the return of the colliers to the mines.

District boards for two important coalfields were appointed on Wednesday. At a conference in Cardiff it was resolved that the members of the existing South Wales Conciliation Board should constitute the joint wage board under the new Act, with Lord St. Aldwyn as the independent chairman; and at a meeting in Manchester the coalowners and miners’ representatives appointed delegates to the new board, over which Judge Bradbury will preside.

Yesterday week the Iron-Bridge Relief Committee distributed 100 tickets to the value of 1s. up to 2s., to the most needy cases in the district. The gift was repeated on Thursday Mr. J. W. White is the treasurer, and Mr. W. Davies (secretary).

In consequence of the Madeley Wood Company putting out a notice on Monday that the Kemberton and Meadow pits would be open on Tuesday for the colliers to return to work, the secretary of the local Lodge (Mr W. Instone) hastily summoned a mass meeting on Monday to consider the matter. Mr T. Instone presided over a crowded room, and remarked that he had known nothing about the meeting until he heard the bellman. He thought that their agent (Mr. Latham) should be present before they decided anything. He asked the men if they were going to work or not, they responded with a great cry of “No.” The meeting was thus adjourned to Tuesday when Mr. T. Tranter presided, and the men listened attentively to the addresses of Messrs A. Hoggins (president of the association), and W. Latham (miners’ agent). Mr. Latham expressed the hope that the men would remain true to the great purpose they had at heart, and the meeting unanimously decided to remain firm to the federation, and not to return to work until the result of the ballot was declared.

A feeling of great relief was produced in Mold and district on Tuesday, when it be-came known that the coal strike, so far as it affected Bromfield Colliery, Mold, was practically at an end. On Monday morning about 100 colliers assembled at the offices and stated that they had decided to “sign on,” and re-start work in accordance with the offer made by the management. They were told to come again later, and in the afternoon, about two o’clock they assembled in still larger numbers, and informed the manager (Mr. Thomas Jones) that all present were agreeable to an immediate resumption of work as they could not see that anything was to be gained by a prolongation of the strike in that district. Mr. Jones addressed the men, and said it was not the wish of the company to exercise the least pressure. If, as they stated, they were desirous of restarting work he would make arrangements for them to begin that Monday evening and others on Tuesday morning. He wished them plainly to understand, however, that it would be impossible to take all the men back immediately, on account of the condition of the mine. Besides the hundred or so men who were already engaged in tunnelling and keeping the roads in order, he would be able to put another hundred men on, and others would be engaged gradually. It would be some few months before anything like the former number of men, between 700 and 800, could be taken on. Mr. Jones made it clear that there was no ill-feeling or bitterness on the part of the employers, who fully realised the circumstances. Interviewed later, Mr. Jones informed a press representative that men would be taken back gradually each day. The difficulty was that men and boys could only be taken on in certain proportions according to the nature of the work they did; and for the present they had ample names on the books to meet requirements. About a hundred men returned to work on Monday night and Tuesday morning. Everything passed off peaceably and not the slightest opposition was offered. Some time, probably a week or two, must elapse before the tinplate works at Mold can restart, as there they are not only waiting for coal, but are waiting for steel from the Brymbo Steelworks. The managing director of the tinplate works (Mr. J. T. Morgans) has very kindly granted loans of money to workmen who were in necessitous circumstances, and this concession has proved a great boon to many men. Much assistance in alleviating distress has been given by Mr. P. T. Davies-Cooke (Gwysaney) and Captain Pennant Lloyd, R.N. (Pentrobin), who has kindly allowed fuel to be gathered on their estates, and have distributed food of various kinds, including rabbits, to men, women, and children. The distribution of soup daily to school children at the Market Hall has also done much to relieve the poignancy of the distress.

Full work has been resumed at the Brynkinallt-Collieries, Chirk, and the collieries in the Ruabon, Wrexham, and Moss districts are preparing for work. Messrs. Craig, the owners of the Brynkinallt Collieries, sent two truck loads of coal to Oswestry for distribution among the poor of the town on Monday. A meeting was told on Wednesday between the representatives of the North Wales colliery owners and the men at Wrexham and was adjourned. The principal business was the question of setting up the district board. Mr. Edward Hughes (secretary of the North Wales Miners’ Association), questioned after the meeting as to the possibility of an immediate resumption of work, stated that nothing could be said until the result of the national ballot had been made known. He, however, stated that the figures for North Wales were as follows:-  For resumption, 7,446; against, 1,190. The men’s representatives afterwards met, and passed a resolution regretting that a certain colliery company were taking advantage of the resumption of work to compel all men to sign on conditionally and that they were stopping old men and reducing the wages of others. The lodges were consequently advised to demand a definite assurance from each colliery company before starting work that all men and boys be reinstated at the rates and hours prevailing before the strike, pending the decision of the Wages Board. All members were further advised not to resume work until instructions were given from the offices of the North Wales Miners’ Association.

Although the ballot figures for Oakengates district are included in those of the Midland federation, it is said that a large majority of the local miners voted against returning to work. However, a good number of men have been working at repairs, &c., down the pits, and a good quantity of coal was wound at the Woodhouse and other pits on Wednesday, the men with family responsibilities being anxious to secure food, &c. for those dependant upon them. Many tons of coal have been excavated from the pit mounds of the Lilleshall Company’s Collieries during the week, and it has been a veritable God-send to many poor families, who had nothing coming in, and who have much appreciated the company’s kindness. Meanwhile relief in the form of free meals, breakfasts, soup, bread, and cocoa, &c., has been liberally dispensed by a good number of tradesmen and private persons.

The men working at the Arscott Colliery, Hanwood, belonging to Mr. Smallshaw, all resumed work on Monday last. The Hanwood miners employed by Mr. S. Atherton will probably start work in full swing on Tuesday next. They were met by Mr. Atherton at the pit mouth on Thursday, and it was decided to open the pit on Tuesday next— a prospect very pleasing to the men employed. The people living in the village of Arscott are very grateful to Mr. Smallshaw for allowing them to pick coal from the old pit mounds round his colliery during the strike. This kindness is keenly appreciated, especially by the women, who would have been absolutely without fuel but for this generous concession.

13th April 1912


GENEROSITY.— The distress in this town and Jackfield is very acute, and what the inhabitants would have done without Lord Forester’s kind help is difficult to imagine. His lordship has given of everything largely, including a great quantity of wood, whilst he has opened up a coal mine in Benthall Edge where deserving cases obtain coal daily, and this alone has proved a god-send to the poorer members of the community.

MARRIAGE.— A pretty wedding was celebrated in All Saints’ Church on Wednesday, the contracting parties being Mr. Arthur Cyril Walker of The Inett, Broseley (second son of Mr. Edmund Walker, The Lye, Morville), and Miss Dorothy Grace Ledger (eldest daughter of Mr. E. H. Ledger of West Holm, Oswestry). The ceremony was performed by the Rev. A. C. Howell (Rector). There was a large gathering of friends of both bride and bridegroom to witness the function. The bride, who was handsomely attired in a dress of ivory crepe meteor, trimmed with Brussels lace and pearls, and wore a wreath of real orange blossom (given by Miss Potts), and a veil, and carried a very choice bouquet of carnations, lilies of the valley, and white heather (gift of the bridegroom) was escorted by her father, who gave her away. The bridesmaids were Miss Winifred Ledger (sister of the bride), and Miss Lilian Walker (sister of the bridegroom), who were prettily attired in Mandarin blue voile, trimmed hand-painted satin and point lace, with hats to match; they wore gold bangles and carried bouquets of pink carnations and lilies of the valley (gifts of the bridegroom). Mr. Ernest Walker (brother of bridegroom) acted as best man. A reception was afterwards held in the Town Hall, a good number of relatives and friends being present. The bride’s going-away attire was a light grey coat and skirt, with Tegal straw hat trimmed with Saxe blue satin. Later in the day the happy couple left in a motor-car for their future home.


13th April 1912



The general coal strike, which began on March 1, was declared on Saturday by the representatives of the miners to be at an end. These representatives, forming a conference of the Miners’ Federation, met in London to consider a recommendation from the executive of the Federation that the men should go back to work pending the fixing of minimum wages for coalgetters in the several districts by the district boards to be set up under the Coal Mines (Minimum Wage) Act. They endorsed the recommendation of their executive, the figures being 440,000 to 125,000, the terms of the decision being that instructions should be given that work be resumed at once. The news was received all over the country with a feeling of relief, and by Wednesday, most of the colliers in the various coalfields had re-commenced work.

In South Lancashire, however, many of the miners refuse to go back, and several conflicts have taken place between large crowds of strikers, and the police outside collieries where work has been resumed. On Wednesday troops were despatched to the disturbed area from Chirk, Norwich, and Aldershot.

Now that fresh coal supplies are beginning to reach the manufacturing centres there are indications in many quarters of a revival of industry. The railway companies also are showing greater activity. The returns for last week of most of the leading companies have been issued, and show that the loss of traffic sustained during the fifth and final week of the strike was not quite so severe as in the preceding week. This was due to increased passenger traffic during the holidays. The loss in gross receipts of 25 companies for the five weeks of the strike exceeded three millions sterling.

At a first meeting of the Shropshire Miners’ Board at Shrewsbury this week it was agreed that the Wage Board should consist of fifteen members with a chairman. The men’s representatives could not agree to the suggestion that Mr. Moseley, vice-chairman of the North Stafford Railway, should be appointed chairman, and another meeting will be necessary to settle the position.

A meeting of miners was held on Good Friday at Oakengates Mr. A. Hoggins presiding. The Chairman said they had met after practically a five weeks’ national strike, and it was to their credit that they had stood loyal to the resolutions of the federation, the strike having shown to the country the power of combination and organisation. They were not a defeated party, for it was a fact that they had won— they had got the principle of a minimum wage established. To get all that was in the Act required all the moral fibre that was in them, for they meant to have the rates that had been scheduled. If they were to continue their loyalty they must now return to work.- Mr. W. Latham (agent) said that they had met to consider the question whether they should resume work pending a settlement of a minimum wage by the district boards. They had been instructed by their executive to resume work. Referring to the formation of the district boards, he said that for many years they had belonged to the Midland Federation, who had been a great help to them in the past, but now help was most needed they found that they had been trusting to a broken staff, and he strongly criticised the action of being broken off from the Midland Federation, and said that there was no use of a federation if they were to be divided into sections. The moment had come for need of the best intelligence of the county, for now was the supreme moment for the destiny of the Shropshire miners, for a good many years lay within the next few weeks, and they must have linked hands, for they had to fight their own fight. They ought to have no trouble in establishing the schedule rates for the district, for they had been admitted by an employer on the board to be the average wage. Mr. Latham then gave a general survey of the situation, in which it was shown in this district that 1,415 had voted for returning to work and 428 against, and he asked them to confirm that and also the resolution of the national executive. A vote was taken, and the resolution was confirmed, and it was decided to return to work.— Most of the pits accordingly began work on Saturday and Easter Tuesday, and much gratification is felt throughout the district at the resumption of work.

The men employed at the Kinlet and Highley Pits, near Bridgnorth, numbering about 600, have been out of sympathy with the strike from the commencement, and when they were informed that the funds had run out they decided to return to work at once.

Work has been resumed at the Kemberton and Meadow pits in the Madeley Wood coal- but in consequence of the Blest’s Hill Furnaces having been blown out upwards of 200 workmen have been thrown out of employment.

4th May 1912


DISTRICT COUNCIL.- Wednesday.— Present:— Alderman D. L. Prestage (chairman), Councillors T. I. Griffiths. G. D. Collins, and G. Keay, Messrs. F. H. Potts (clerk), G. Stevenson (surveyor), H. Herbert (sanitary inspector), E. Oakes (rate collector), and E. Abberley. (water inspector).— Mr. Herbert reported one case of scarlet fever and diphtheria at Jackfield, and also one case of scarlet fever at Broseley. A number of nuisances were reported by the officer, and the usual orders, were made.— Mr. Keay expressed his opinion that a good many people would begin to wish that they had no property. He thought it would be a good thing if the world went altogether. (Laughter.)- It was reported that there was an overdraft at the bank for £300— The Clerk said that they would soon begin upon the new rate.

Dr. Collins brought up the question of the “fair nuisance”, stating that the noise at midnight on Tuesday was most hideous. He suggested that the fair should be held a distance from the town.— Mr. Keay said that he would have no objection for the fair to be held at his end of the town.—The Chairman said that the best way to deal with the matter was for the residents to memorialise Mr. Jenkyn, asking for an abatement of “the nuisance.” — The matter was left with the clerk, who was asked to communicate with the landlord. - The Surveyor reported that his expenditure for the month was £19 8s. 2d. A letter was read from Dr. J. G. Boon, who enclosed a packet of nails which he had picked up at Barrett’s Hill. Considering that their rates were so high, he thought that better material should be put on the roads!— The meeting was of opinion that the nails had been thrown on the road by the inhabitants and the matter was referred to the Surveyor.  The Chairman made reference to the recent fire at the Dean Farm, and spoke of the smart work of the fire brigade, who turned out and were at the place in 15 minutes, and saved a large portion of the farm buildings. Their work was smart, and he considered that they ought to have some credit for it. (Hear, hear.)        Mr. Abberley reported that all the water mains were in good working order. The consumption of Harrington water was on the increase.


11th May 1912


TITANIC DISASTER FUND.— A collection on behalf of this fund was made at the afternoon service on Sunday in the Parish Church, resulting in a sum of £3 15s. 6d. being raised. The preacher was the Vicar (the Rev. W. A. Terry), who very sympathetically referred to those suffering from this, the most terrible marine catastrophe of modern times Mr. E. P. Price ably presided at the organ. The hymns, “Eternal Father” “Nearer, my God, to Thee” and “Peace, perfect peace”, were feelingly rendered by the choir. There was a very large congregation.


18th May 1912


DEATH OF MR. JAMES LEE.— On the 11th inst. Mr. James Lee passed away at his residence. 49, Crew’s Park, Broseley Deceased was 68 years of age, and in his early days was in the employ of Messrs. Maw and Co. at the Old Works, Benthall, eventually entering the service of Messrs. Craven, Dunnill, and Co., as a packer, in which capacity he continued until his death. He had been a member of the “Rose of the Vale” Lodge of Oddfellows (Iron-Bridge) for about 46 years, and the lodge was strongly represented at the funeral, the members wearing the usual regalia of the Order. His remains were interred in the cemetery on Tuesday. The Rev. A. C. Howell (rector) conducted the service in the church and at the graveside. The mourners were Messrs. James and William Lee (sons), Arthur Brown, James Speake, Robert Lee, and George Williams (nephews), and Mr. T. E. Patten (brother-in-law). There was a large gathering present, among whom were: —Mr. C. C. Bruff, Mr. W. Smith (representing the firm of Messrs. Craven, Dunnill and Co.), Mr. C. W. Hughes and Mr J. Watkins (representing the office staff), and Mr. F. Smith (representing the employees), Messrs. W. Francis (Church View), W Edge (Mill House), T. R. Hill, T. Edwards, R. Watkins, A. Harvey, Geo. Higgins, T. Marlow, W. Leadbetter, Arthur Shaw, and James Davies (King Street), by whom the funeral arrangements were carried out. Mr. H. Foster, P.O., read the Oddfellows’ address at the graveside. Beautiful wreaths were contributed by the family, relatives, and friends of deceased, including one from the office staff and employees of Messrs. Craven, Dunnill, and Co.

18th May 1912


OLYMPIAN SOCIETY.— At a meeting on Friday last week, Mr. J. H. Grainger presiding, tenders were accepted for prizes, booth, and refreshment tents. The Mayor (Councillor H. A. Whitley), as advertised, is giving prizes for the best horses in the tilting competition.


Present:— Councillor J. H. A. Whitley (mayor), Aldermen A. B. Dyas, J. Davies, D. L. Prestage, F. G. Beddoes, and W. J. Legge, Councillors B. Maddox, G. D. Collins, J. E. A. Wolryche-Whitmore, A. L. Hayes, J. Roberts, G. Keay, J. Jinks, R. Clarke, A. A. Exley, W. G. Dyas, W. F, Bryan, T.  Morris, C. Edwards, and W. J. Milner, Mr. I. H. Potts (town clerk), and other borough officials.

The Clerk stated that the Chief-Constable had approved of the plans suggested by the Justices to alter the Much Wenlock Police Station, but they have to be submitted to the Home Office.— Mr. Herbert presented the plans which were explained by the clerk.

The amount of the quarterly bills, &c., to be paid, the Mayor said, amounted to £405 0s. l1d. There was a sum in hand of £122, leaving to be raised by a rate £282 19s. 9d. The rateable value of the borough was £54,811. He moved that a borough rate of 1½d. in the pound be levied.— Alderman Dyas seconded, and the motion was carried.

Alderman Dyas presented a report of the Main Roads Committee, which was adopted. The meeting decided to accept from the County Council £1,864 per annum towards the cost and maintenance and repair of the borough roads for a period of three years.- The question of tar spraying the roads was left to the Sanitary Committee.— A sub-committee, was appointed to draw up a letter to the County Council, who offered the sum of £100 towards the repair of the Broseley and Iron-Bridge road, ascertaining what the County Council were prepared to do in the future with these roads.— Mr. Maddox- stated that the new bridge at Iron-Bridge was being worn, and moved that the surveyor be instructed to give attention to the bridge and its approaches.— Alderman Prestage seconded.— Mr. Maddox said that a weight limit would have to be arranged.— Alderman Prestage considered that the bridge was efficient for the work of the district.— The motion was carried.

The Mayor said that the next business was to pass a resolution on behalf of the Wenlock Sanitary Committee instructing the town clerk to apply to the Public Works Loan Commissioners and others for a loan of £5,000 for the purpose of the Much Wenlock sewerage scheme, and to order the borough seal to be affixed to the mortgage deed and other documents relating thereto.— The. Clerk explained that the sanction of the Local Government Board had been obtained for borrowing £6,000, and that the scheme had commenced, and before long the contractor would require some money. The Wenlock Sanitary Committee wished to apply for £5,000.— Mr. Edwards, in proposing a motion to the above effect, remarked that the scheme was forced upon them. — Mr. Maddox said that he seconded the motion with reluctance, and Wenlock had his deepest sympathy. He hoped that it would not be forced upon other parts of the borough.— The motion was carried.

The Mayor said that they had now to pass a resolution instructing the town clerk to obtain a loan of £1,500 towards the amount paid to the Montgomery County Council under the agreement as to the dissolution of Salop and Wenlock with Montgomery in respect of Bicton Asylum, and to order the borough seal to be affixed to the mortgage deed and other documents relating thereto. — Alderman Davies proposed a resolution to this effect, which was seconded by Alderman Dyas, and carried.

The public analyst reported that all the three samples of milk that he had analysed were genuine.

Mr. Buckland reported that he had audited the elementary education accounts; in which there was nothing special to draw the Council’s attention.

Mrs. W. G. Owen (Dale End) was appointed representative manager of the Coalbrookdale County School.

With reference to the Shops Act the Clerk said that he had posted up notices concerning it in the borough, and the question was now to appoint an inspector. He did not think that his duties would be very heavy.— Mr. Symonds stated that until the closing orders were made in the borough they could do no work.— The Clerk said that meant that the Town Council could make an order that all the shops closed on a certain day.— Alderman Beddoes thought that they could trust the people as to what day they should close. He did not think there would be any difficulty in the borough.— The question was referred to the General Purposes Committee.

A communication was received from the County Council criticising the unsatisfactory arrangement of the Broseley Isolation Hospital.— Dr. Collins said that he did not think there would be any difficulty to staff or make the necessary arrangements at short notice.— The Clerk was instructed to reply to the County Council to that effect.

A letter was also read from the County Council asking the Borough Council to proceed with a sewerage scheme for the Iron-Bridge and Broseley districts without delay. — The clerk was ordered to inform the Council that the matter was under consideration.

Mr. Symonds, inspector of weights and measures presented his annual report upon the administration of the Weights and Measures Acts in the borough. He had made 332 surprise visits of outdoor inspection, which were more than required by the Board of Trade, and he was pleased to report that he had met with no case requiring a prosecution.— Mr. Symonds was thanked for his satisfactory report.


1st June 1912



A pleasing and memorable ceremony took place on the Victoria Memorial Green on Saturday, when the poor inhabitants of Broseley and Benthall gratefully acknowledged the extreme kindness during the coal strike of Lord Forester and Captain Geo. Forester by presenting them with an enlarged framed photograph of the Foxholes Mines in which they appeared. The inscription read:— “Presented to the Rt. Hon. Lord Forester and Captain G. C. B. W. Forester by the poor of Broseley and Benthall as a slight memento of their generosity during the coal strike of 1912’’. Councillor J. Nicklin presided, and was supported on the platform by Lord Forester, Captain Geo. Forester, Mrs. Forester and son, the Rev. A. C. Howell, the Rev. W. A. Terry, Dr. J. G. Boon, Messrs. T. I. Griffiths, E. C S. White, and W Bishop. The Jackfield Band was present, and under the direction of Mr. G. W. Aston discoursed some excellent music. The Boy Scouts, under the command of Scoutmaster W. Edge and Assistant Scoutmaster Leonard Wase were also in attendance. There was a large crowd present.

Councillor Nicklin referred to the many kind acts of the Forester family, adding that Lord Forester was always ready to ameliorate the sufferings of the poor of that parish, and it was a pleasure to him to render what assistance he could during the late lamentable strike. (Applause.) There was consequently an out-burst of feeling among those who benefited that they should do something whereby they could recognise his lordship’s kindness, and that was the object of their meeting together that day. (Applause.)

Dr. J. G. Boon (chairman of the committee) then made the presentation amid great enthusiasm. He said that it was a great honour to him to be asked to make the presentations from those who suffered during the recent coal strike presentations got up by themselves and paid for with their coppers. (Applause.) Many homes would have been fireless had it not been for his lordship’s kindness in giving wood away in large quantities and coal free during the time of need. (Applause.) He knew that no words of his could express the deep gratitude which was felt in Broseley and Benthall to the Forester family. (Applause.) It was also a very great pleasure to him to have to make at the same time a presentation to Captain the Hon. Geo. Forester, the worthy son of a worthy father—(applause)— who took a very active part in this generous work (Applause.) The King, he added, had this week made Capt. Forester a Knight of the Order of St. John of Jerusalem, it which was a recognition of the interest he had taken in charities. (Applause.)

Lord Forester said that he had not expected anything from them, but he would say that the feeling which prompted them to offer those mementos he fully appreciated. He was glad that he had had some wood and coal handy to give away. (Applause.) The poor had all suffered through strikes, and he saw that there was another strike in London, which had raised the price of food. He paid a tribute to Mr C. R. Jones for the way in which he had met them and helped to obtain the coal, in fact without Mr. Jones’s assistance they could not have done it. (Applause.)

Captain Forester remarked that it was very kind of them to have given his father this appreciation of their feelings to him, but it was, still more kind of them to have also given one to him, because he did not consider that he deserved it in the very slightest. He did not give them the wood or coal, but he did try to do all he could to help his father’s action, which they had so generously acknowledged that day. He would say with pride that the family he belonged to had always tried to do their duty to alleviate any distress when any crisis arose such as the late strike. (Applause.) Actions of this kind, he maintained, drew the different classes together, instead of widening the breach. (Applause.) As long as he lived he should value the photograph amongst his cherished possessions from his old friends of Broseley and Benthall. (Applause.) He added that he would now make a third presentation from the poor of Broseley and Benthall to his very great friend, Dr. Boon. (Applause.) He then handed to that gentleman a similar photograph, which, the Captain said was a little surprise to him. He also referred to the good work that the doctor did among the poor of the town. The Captain also referred to the keen interest and great help which Mr. A. C. Edwards (secretary) had taken in the distribution of the coal, and handed to him a handsome pipe and cigarette-holder in case.

Dr Boon, in acknowledging the gift, stated that that was the biggest surprise he had ever had, and he preferred that picture to being knighted, (Laughter.) He hoped they would never have another winter in Broseley like the last. (Applause.)— Mr. Edwards also returned thanks.

Mr. Griffiths proposed a vote of thanks to Dr. Boon for making the presentation, which was seconded by Mr. W. Bishop, and carried with musical honours.— The Rev. A. C. Howell proposed that a vote of thanks be tendered to the Victoria Institute, the band, and Boy Scouts, which was seconded by the Rev. W. A. T. Terry, and carried.-  On the motion of Mr. E. C. S White, seconded by M. G. P. Bagley, a vote of thanks was accorded Mr.  Nicklin for Presiding.— Cheers for Lord Forester and family concluded a memorable event.

The following gentlemen composed the committee and carried out the arrangements:— Dr. J. G Boon (chairman), Messrs. J. Evans, R. Blood, W. H. Ball, F. Ball, H. Mason, R. Clinton. J. Broadhurst, W. Gainham, and A. C. Edwards, the last-named proving an energetic secretary.

8th June 1912



Before Alderman F. C. Beddoes, Captain Geo. Forester, Councillors B. Maddox and W. Roberts.

THE TRANSFER of the Falcon Inn, Much Wenlock, was granted to Councillor T. R. Horton; and that of the Duke of Wellington, Coalport, to Geo. Downes.

DRUNK IN CHARGE.— Richard Childes, Posenhall, was summoned for being drunk in charge of a horse.— Sergeant Morris stated that he saw defendant and another man named A. James in charge of three horses. Defendant was riding the first horse, and was in a drunken condition. Witness had the horses stopped, and put the team in charge of James.— Defendant was ordered to pay costs.

8th June 1912


BURIAL BOARD. — The quarterly meeting was held on Wednesday, with Alderman D. L. Prestage in the chair. The clerk (Mr. F. H. Potts) reported a balance of £7 1s. 2d. in hand. The other business was of a formal character.

DISTRICT COUNCIL, Wednesday.— Present:— Alderman D. L. Prestage (chairman), Lord Forester, Councillors J. Nicklin, T. J. Griffiths, G. Keay, and Messrs. F. H. Potts (clerk), G. Stevenson (surveyor), H. Herbert (sanitary inspector), E. Oakes (collector), and E. Abberley (water inspector).— Mr. Herbert reported that there had been no notifiable infectious disease cases since the last meeting. He also reported a number of nuisances, and the usual orders were made.— The Clerk reported an adverse balance on the two accounts of £363 13s. 8d., and the collector was instructed to proceed with the collection of the new rate.- The Surveyor stated that his expenditure for the month was £17 10s. 3d. — It was decided to paint the steam roller water cart.— Mr. Abberley reported that since the last meeting he had made a general inspection of the water mains in Broseley and Jackfield, all of which he found were in good working order.- The Secretary of the Fire Brigade made application for the annual subscription of £10. — Mr. Nicklin said he was asked to make a further application for a little assistance in insuring the men.— Mr. Keay asked if it was a rule with all councillors to make an allowance, for what was the use of insuring the men and paying the fire brigade as well?— The Chairman said the Council was not liable.— It was decided to make a grant of £12 to the brigade.- Mr. Griffiths brought up the question of the closing of the Coalport ferry boat. He thought there should be a public road across the river, and thought the Council should take steps in the matter— Mr. Keay considered there should be a footbridge.— Mr. Griffiths said he had heard there was a possibility of Messrs. Maw and Co. taking over the boat, but only to be used for their own work people. He thought a footbridge would cost £150, and that Madeley Council should join them in the scheme.— Mr. Keay considered the work should be done by the local bodies.— Mr. Griffiths said the question was whether they could erect a footbridge and charge toll until it was paid for.— The Clerk said they would have to obtain an Act of Parliament before they could take tolls. The river was a highway, and they had no right to throw anything over it.— The Madeley Wood Company,  the Clerk said, paid £500 for the landing rights on the Jackfield side.- The Clerk was eventually instructed to write the Company offering them a grant to keep the boat on.


15th June 1912


DISTRICT COUNCIL, Wednesday.- Present:- Alderman  A. B. Dyas (chairman) and W. J. Legge, Councillors B. Maddox. W. F. Bryan, A. F. A Wolryche-Whitmore, W. Roberts, S. R. Maw, R. Clarke, and S. Jinks, Messrs. F. H. Potts (clerk), G. Stevenson (surveyor), H. Herbert (sanitary inspector), and A. O Callear (water inspector and collector). —

Mr. Maddox raised the question of the Coalport ferry boat, which had been a means of passage over the Severn for more than 150 years. He said that the ferry was proposed to be discontinued at the end of the present month, and he thought that some steps should be taken on lines indicated by a member of the Broseley Council, who suggested a joint conference with the Madeley Council.— Mr. Maw endorsed the last speaker’s remarks. - Mr. Bryan considered that they were out of order in dealing with the question, as Broseley had taken the matter up by offering the company a grant to keep the boat on. He would support the scheme of erecting a footbridge, but not to maintain the ferry. Now that Broseley had taken up the matter they must wait and see what followed. Had the new bridge been erected in a more reasonable place it would have answered the purposes of all. — Mr Maddox moved that the standing orders be suspended to discuss the matter.— Three voted for this and three against, and the Chairman decided to consider the matter at the next meeting.

6th July 1912


ROSE SHOW.—A successful open rose show was held on Saturday at the Lord Hill, the proceeds being placed in the Hospital Sunday box. Mr. T. Marlow gave a prize for the largest number of points. Mr. H. Aston carried out the secretarial duties with satisfaction. The prize winners were:— 1 J. Coney. 2 W. Shaw, 3 H. Russell, 4 T. Marlow, special E. Shaw.

DISTRICT COUNCIL, Wednesday.— Present Alderman P. L. Prestage (chairman), Councillors J. Nicklin, G. D. Collins, T. I. Griffiths, A. A. Exley, G. Keay, and T. Doughty, Messrs. F. H. Potts (clerk), G. Stevenson (surveyor), H. Herbert (sanitary inspector), E. Oakes (rate collector), and E. Abberley (water inspector).— Mr. Herbert reported the district free from notifiable infectious disease. He also reported a number of nuisances, and the usual orders were made.— The Clerk reported an adverse balance on the two accounts of £305 without signing cheques that day.— Mr. Keay: It is easy to sign cheques, Mr. Chairman. You can sign a cheque for £1,000, and only have £1 in the bank.— The Chairman having remarked that there was so much money to come in, Mr. Keay observed that they did not know what was coming in — they were only certain of death.— After some discussion the collector was instructed to issue summons against two persons for the recovering of the water rent.— Mr. Keay considered that the regulations were “rotten”, and he wished that all the people would apply for a reduction in their assessment. The people were now living on the verge of bankruptcy.— The Chairman said that the regulations had been in existence over 20 years. “You (to Mr. Keay) are doing nothing but disturbing the meeting. Let’s get on to business. You place me in the chair and won’t give the other members a chance to speak.” —Mr. Keay: They have spoken.— Mr. Abberley reported that all the water mains at Broseley and Jackfield were in good working order.— With reference to the Coalport ferry, the Clerk said that he had written the Madeley Wood Company about the matter, and had also seen Mr. Oakes from the Madeley Wood Company’s office, who plainly showed to him that the company had been losing £30 a year. He had asked Colonel Anstice to keep the ferry open till the end of this month, which the company were doing. Mr. Doughty said that the boat was 70 years old.— Mr. Griffiths was of opinion that it would cost about £500 to erect a bridge over the Severn.— Mr. Nicklin: What can we do in the matter?— Mr. Keay: Let it die.— The Chairman: You (to Mr. Keay) are rather rude to interrupt another member when he is speaking!— Dr. Collins observed that if Madeley Council were willing to help them they might do something.— Mr. Keay: We cannot do what we like, or else we should have what we like.— Mr. Griffiths said that the present boat was not safe, and there was no doubt but what the ferry would be closed.— Mr. Nicklin proposed that the clerk be instructed to ask the Madeley Council to consider the question with them, with a view of making some arrangement.— Mr. Doughty seconded the motion, which was carried unanimously.


6th July 1912


PRESENTATION.— On Saturday in the school-room Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Jones, on the occasion of their marriage, were presented with a walnut coal vase and pictures by a number of the parishoners in recognition of Mr. Jones’s faithful services as postman of the parish for 15 years. In the absence of the vicar (the Rev. W. A. Terry) the presentation was made by Mrs. Terry in a few words suitable to the occasion, and Mr. Jones suitably responded.

CHOIR TRIP. On Monday the members of the Church Choir, together with the Vicar and organist, proceeded with the Severn Valley Choir Trip to Blackpool, where a most enjoyable time was spent.





 13th July 1912


BOARD OF GUARDIANS, Friday Week.—Present: Mr. J. Clayton (chairman), Revs. E. Delstrode Pryce, E. Party, Dr. G. D. Collins, Mrs. Lloyd, Messrs. C. Edwards, G. Windsor, H. Hughes B. A. Rhodes, J. Davies, T. Doughty, G. Keay. C. C. Brunt, W. J. Legge, J. Parton, J. Simpson, J. E. A. Wolryche-Whitmore, J. E. Hartshorne. A. A. Exley, A. H. Thorn-Pudsey (clerk), F. W. Derry (deputy clerk) G. Watson (master), J. C. Mole and W. Edge (relieving officers).— Mr. Shuker’s (Broseley) tender for supplying the house with bread at 5d. per loaf was accepted.— The Master reported that the number of vagrants admitted to the house since the last meeting was 30.— Messrs. Parton and Norgrove reported that they had visited the house and found everything in good order.— The Clerk informed the Board that the Devonport nurse had returned her travelling expenses.


Present:—.Aldermen A. B. Dyas (chairman), W. J. Legge, and F. G. Beddoes, Councillors W. F. Bryan. W. Roberts, W. G. Dyas, B. Maddox, J. Jinks, S. L. Maw, and R. Clarke, with Messrs. P. H. Potts (town clerk), G. Stevenson (surveyor), and H. Herbert (sanitary inspector)…

Mr. Maddox moved the resolution of which notice had been given— “To consider the question of the Coalport Ferry, and move a resolution.” He said that it would clear the ground for them, having heard what the town clerk had told them, and seeing that the ferry would close at the end of the month he thought that immediate steps should be taken to confer with Broseley in view of a passage being made over the river not with a ferry but with a foot-bridge. He informed the Council that since the erection of the free bridge it had been in his mind to obtain a scheme for a footbridge at Coalport, and in November last year an engineer came down to look at the place and promised to submit a scheme. In January a sketch was sent down, with an approximate estimate for a footbridge, showing the cost to be about £250 or possibly less. In a conversation he had with Mr. W. Griffiths, also Councillor T. Griffiths, they had expressed their willingness to grant a landing on very easy terms. From what the clerk had said it had been suggested that the loss of £30 per annum should be made up to the Madeley Wood Company to continue a ferry boat, but it would be seen that for about £10 a year in interest a sum could be loaned to carry out a bridge scheme. In fact, he had been in-formed that a gentleman had been asked some time ago to prepare data for a footbridge, and he worked out the cost at £150. He asked the Council to agree to a conference with the members from Broseley, and moved that the Madeley Council agree to meet them in the same proposition as the members on the Joint Water Committee.-  Councillor Jinks seconded. — Mr. Maw expressed his approval of some steps being taken to provide a passage over the river.— Mr. Legge thought that the number of per-sons could not be numerous who crossed the river seeing that it did not pay the Madeley Wood Company to run the ferry. He considered that it was not the time to involve the ratepayers in further cost to erect another bridge. They had only just paid off the balance on the new bridge. — Mr. Roberts supported.— Mr. Bryan said that he could see no harm in appointing a committee to consider and report, but beyond that they must not go. It should be understood that the committee could only meet and draw up a report. They should have no authority to spend any money.— The Chairman pointed out to Mr. Bryan that the terms of the resolution were simply to consider and report.—In reply, Mr. Maddox pointed out that as the representatives of the people, it was their bounden duty to do their best in the public interests, and endeavour to provide means for a safe passage over the river. It was not a pleasant feeling for those people who had to cross the river in the winter season when the river was in flood by a worn-out ferry-boat. Of course those who were not placed in such difficulty had no thought or feeling for other people. He suggested that a special meeting of the Council be called to consider the report of the committee.— The motion was carried.

20th July 1912

Letters to the Editor


In your last issue is a report of the Madeley District Council’s discussion on the closing of the Coalport ferry. Some members appear to think that this crossing is not of importance because of the Madeley Wood Company’s statement that the boat does not pay. Surely the people have been patient long enough, and now think it time that the Council should do something to ensure a safe passage for the workers who live on opposite sides of the river to which their work lies. It is the duty of the Council to safeguard the ratepayers’ money. But are we passengers of the ferry not ratepayers? Do they think we should grumble to have some of our own money spent on ourselves? I guess not! A bridge will not only benefit the workers, but the tradesmen of the district also.





20th July 1912


EMPLOYEE’S TRIP.— The office staff of Messrs. Craven, Dunnill, and Co. had their annual trip on Saturday, when they drove to Bridgnorth. The route taken after leaving the works and Broseley was down the leafy avenue of Willey Park. A slight halt, with the permission of Mr. Hamilton (Lord Forester’s agent) was made at the Hall with its commanding view. Driving on past the prettily-situated church of Willey, with the old Hall adjacent, and emerging into Smithies Lane, the party entered into the park of Aldenham with its sweeping views of the surrounding country. Having reached the Hall, they proceeded down the famous avenue to the fine entrance gates on the main road just above the village of Morville, where a halt was called to visit the ancient church. Getting on the road again, Bridgnorth was reached at about 5 p.m., the party being met by Mr. C. C. Bruff (managing director) and Mr. J. Cheadle (secretary), who had motored over. After a short walk round the town, inspecting the various sights, the party gathered at an hotel, where they were generously entertained to dinner by the Managing Director, who presided. After an excellent repast some interesting remarks were made relative to the progress of the firm, and a hearty vote of thanks was accorded to Mr. and Mrs. Bruff., also to the secretary of the firm, Mr. Cheadle, and members of the staff, which brought a very enjoyable time to a close.


3rd August 1912


ROSE SHOW.— A successful rose show was held on Saturday at the Lord Hill, and was in every respect a success. Mr. George Potts was judge, and the proceeds will be devoted towards the hospital fund. Prize winners:— Rose class.—1, J. Boden; 2, T. Jones; 3, D. Boden. Buttonhole class—1, H Russell, 2, E Humphries; 3, J. Boden; 4, W. Shaw.

MARRIAGE IN AMERICA.— On July 13 at St George’s Church, Schenectady, New York, by the Rev. B. W. R. Tayler, D.D., Mr. William Cartwright, son of Mrs. Charles Cartwright, was united in marriage to Miss Beatrice Tufnell, formerly of Blackheath, London. They were the recipients of many handsome presents. Their future home will be at 142, Front Street, Schenectady, New York, where the bride groom holds a position at the Schenectady Works of the American Locomotive Company of New York City.

DISTRICT COUNCIL, Wednesday.— Present:— Alderman D. L. Prestage (chairman), Councillors J. Nicklin, T. Doughty, A. A. Exley, T. I. Griffiths, and D. G. Collins, Messrs. F. H. Potts (town clerk), G. Stevenson (surveyor), H. Herbert (sanitary inspector), E. Oakes (collector) and E. Abberley (water inspector).— Mr. Herbert reported the district free from notifiable infectious disease. He also reported a number of nuisances, which were ordered to be abated.— The Clerk re-ported an adverse balance on the general district and water accounts of £276.— Mr. Abberley’s report was considered satisfactory.— After some conversation Mr. J. Nicklin proposed, “That the recommendation of the joint sub-committee that a footbridge be erected at Coalport to take the place of the ferry be adopted.” — Mr. Doughty seconded the motion, which was unanimously carried.

10th August 1912


BOROUGH COUNCIL. Wednesday.— Present:— Aldermen D. L. Prestage (chairman), T. Cooke. A. B. Dyas, F. G. Beddoes, J. Davies, and W. J. Legge, Councillors W. G. Dyas, C. Edwards, W. Roberts, A. A. Exley, R. Clarke. J. Roberts, A. L. Hayes, T. Morris, W. J. Milner, B. Maddox, W. Bishop, J. Nicklin, and G. D. Collins, Mr. F. H. Potts (town clerk), and other borough officials.— Mr. Maddox said that three months ago an order was given to the surveyor to repair the new bridge and its approaches at Iron-Bridge, but nothing yet have been done. He maintained that when an order was made in the Council or committee it should be carried out by their servants.— Alderman Cooke asked if the work was to be done on the borough account, for he considered that they had no right to spend borough money on district roads.— Mr. Maddox added that the town clerk had said that the borough having taken over the bridge, the bridge and landings were the property of the borough, and they were within their right to repair the same.- Alderman Cooke still maintained that no district road could be repaired by borough money.— The Chairman said that the approach to the bridge was a part of the bridge, and the surveyor was instructed to carry out the work. — The Chairman said that the borough accounts had been passed, and the bills due and coming due for the quarter amounted to £495 10s. 6d.; there was a sum in hand of £227, leaving £267 to be raised by rate. He moved that the accounts be paid, and that a borough rate of 1½d. in the pound be levied. Alderman Davies seconded the motion, which was carried. Alderman Cooke presented a report of the visitors to the Joint Lunatic Asylum, and moved the adoption of the same, which was seconded by Alderman Davies, and carried.— The Chairman said that they were indebted to Alderman Cooke for the great interest he took in the work of the asylum. He (the speaker) paid a visit to the place a short time ago, and was astonished to see how orderly the whole place was. The inmates were very well looked after.- Alderman Dyas presented a report of the Main Roads and General Purposes Committee, which was adopted.— The clerk was instructed to write the County Council asking for a grant of £75 as the authority’s share from the Road Board, and if allowed the Council decided to devote it to the proposed improvement of Iron-Bridge Market Square, the work to be done at once.— The Council agreed to accept £100 from the County Council towards the upkeep of the Broseley and Iron-Bridge road, Madeley Sanitary Committee to have £20 and Broseley £80, and no doubt, Alderman Dyas remarked, the Broseley people would appreciate Madeley’s kindness. (Laughter.)— Committees were appointed to see to the carrying out of the alterations at the Iron-Bridge and Much Wenlock Police Stations.      The question of appointing an inspector under the Shop Act was deferred to a special meeting.— The Clerk read the borough auditor’s report, which was of a satisfactory character. They complimented the town clerk and rate collectors on the excellent manner in which the books were kept— Mr. Roberts, in moving the adoption of the report, said that each collector appeared to have made it a study to keep his book properly as well efficiently.- In seconding  the motion Alderman Dyas expressed his pleasure at hearing those remarks of the auditor. —The Clerk was of opinion that all the collectors should in future see that their books were closed on the 31st of March.— The report was adopted.—The Chairman said that the next business was to pass a resolution ordering that the Infectious Disease (notification) Act 1889, should apply within the borough to cerebro-spinal fever, acute poliomyelitis and pulmonary tuberculosis.—The clerk said that he had to obtain a resolution of Council, which had to go to the Local Government Board and they would order the matter to be published.—Alderman Cooke proposed the above resolution; Alderman Beddoes seconded, and it was carried.

17th August 1912


PROPOSED FOOTBRIDGE AT COALPORT.- The sub-committee appointed to consider this question reported that in their opinion a foot-bridge should be erected at Coalport at a cost not to exceed £250, and that the amount should be borne equally by the Madeley and Broseley wards.— The Town Clerk stated that the resolution had been passed by Broseley —Councillor Dyas asked if the amount quoted would be the total expenditure for bridge and landings, as the report did not make it clear.— Councillor Bryan said he would like to know if an estimate had been received for erecting the bridge.— The Chairman formally moved the adoption of the report.— Mr. Maddox, in seconding said that Broseley had shown a generous spirit in offering to pay one half of the cost, seeing that their rateable value amounted to little more than one half of that of Madeley. It might be that the Broseley working people employed at the different works near to Coalport would receive the greater benefit. Still the larger question was that of making provision for all who at any time desired to cross the river. It had been stated that only a few persons had used the old ferry, but that was caused by the workpeople choosing to walk the longer distance over the new bridge, and from the fact that there was no passage sufficiently early for them to get to their work in a morning. A fairer way to look at the question was if a free passage were provided, how many persons would it benefit. For a century and a half, he had been informed, a passage across the river had existed, and this alone proved the necessity for a bridge. Of one thing he was quite certain, that the majority of the electors approved of the action that had been taken, and were in favour of the proposal.-  Ald. Leg said that although, a member of the sub-committee he voted against the proposal. It had been stated that only 50 people used the old ferry, which meant that Madeley was asked to spend £125 to benefit from 20 to 25 persons. He considered the time most in-opportune, as the, rateable value of the ward was declining. There was a loss of £175 in rates from the Madeley Wood Co. closing their works. There were two large houses empty at Coalbrookdale. They had reduced the rate 1d. this year, which meant £80, and in his opinion, there would be a deficit balance on March 31st of at least £400. He was of opinion that the Council ought not to further increase its liabilities.— Mr. Bryan said that. they were indebted to Mr. Legge for the figures he had given with regard to their financial practice, but he considered that a footbridge was necessary for people who had to cross to their work, and on these grounds he supported the adoption of the report, but would like to know if the amount of money required could be spread over a period for repayment.— Mr. Whitmore agreed with the last speaker’s remarks.— Mr. Clarke suggested an appeal being made to the works of Messrs. Maw and Co. also the Coalport China Works. If a sum of money could be raised in this way it would lighten the burden for the ratepayers.— Mr. Jenks thought the suggestion a good one, and appealed to Councillor Maddox, as he had been successful in a previous scheme.— Mr. Roberts said that he had listened to the gloomy picture drawn by Alderman Legge with regard to their finances, but surely if Broseley could afford to contribute one half of the cost Madeley had nothing to fear, and while it was true that some works were closing, there was a prospect of others opening, and to his mind there was an absolute necessity for a bridge.— Alderman Beddoes said that he should refrain from voting unless it could be shown clearly that the sum of £250 was the total amount to be spent on the bridge and landings, and that no further liability would be incurred.— In reply to questions Mr. Maddox said that an engineer from the Hennebique Ferro-Concrete Co., visited the site last November, and submitted an estimate with plans of a foot bridge consisting of a  complete span over the river, the roadway to be five feet wide. The question of landings had been gone into some time ago, and Mr. Bruff kindly consented to find a landing on the Madeley side. Mr. Sydney Maw also offered a landing on the Jackfield side. Since then, Mr. W. Griffiths had expressed his willingness to assist by allowing a landing on his ground. The question of spreading the rest over a period had been under consideration by the committee, and there would be no difficulty in making arrangements for this to be done.— On the question being put to the meeting, Messrs. Whitmore, Maddox ,Jinks, Roberts, and Bryan, voted for the adoption of the report, Ald. Legge and Mr. Clarke against, and Alderman Beddoes and Mr. W. Dyas were neutral.

7th September 1912


DISTRICT COUNCIL.- Present Alderman D. L. Prestage (chairman), Councillors J. Nicklin, and T. I. Griffiths, Messrs. F. H. Potts (clerk), G. Stevenson (surveyor), H. Herbert (sanitary inspector), E. Oakes (collector), and E. Abberley (water inspector).- A letter was read from the London and North-Western Railway offices in London with reference to the complaint of the rapid speed at which the company’s motor-dray was driven through Broseley and Jackfield. The Company promised to look into the matter at once.— Mr. Herbert reported the district free from notifiable infectious disease. — The meeting was pleased to hear this statement.- The Officer also reported a number of nuisances, which were ordered to be abated. — The Clerk reported that there was a balance in hand of £104 on the general district rate account, and an adverse balance of £104 on the water account.— The Chairman remarked that their position had improved since the last meeting, but there was still outstanding on the general district rate account the sum of £193.— Mr. Oakes presented a big list of rate defaulters, which was carefully gone through by the members, and the collector received the usual instructions to take proceedings for the recovery of the rate.— The Surveyor informed the meeting that his expenditure for the work was £19 9s. 4d. His application to order 600 tons of stone for the roads in the ward was allowed. He was also instructed to order a snowplough. —Mr. Abberley reported that all the water mains in the district were in good order.— With reference to the proposed new footbridge at Coalport in the place of the old ferry, the Clerk stated that the Madeley District Council had decided to meet the Broseley Council to discuss matters and make arrangements for the carrying out of the proposal.— Mr. Griffiths asked if the Madeley Wood Company would allow someone to have the use of the ferry-boat in the meantime by paying a nominal sum for the landing rights.- The Clerk: Is the boat safe? I think the Madeley Wood Company would lend the boat, but would take no risk.- Mr. Griffiths believed that the men who had been looking after the boat would take the risk and pay for the landing. He would be contented to take what he could get.— The Clerk said that he would write Colonel Anstice on the matter.

21st September 1912


DEATH OF AN OLD RINGMASTER.- There was buried on Monday at the Cemetery a well-known figure in the of Abraham Bezman, who was one time ringmaster to the Lord John Sanger. Relatives and attended the funeral

HOSPITAL SUNDAY.- parade of the Broseley and District Friendly Societies was held on Sunday afternoon. A procession was formed near the Mission Hall, Broseley Wood, marching thence through the principal streets to the Parish Church, in the following order—Jackfield Brass Band (under the leadership of Mr. G. Aston). Territorials (under the command of Major A. N. B. Garrett), Boy Scouts (under the command of Scoutmaster L. Wase and Assistant-Scoutmaster A. Nicklin), Broseley Fire Brigade (under the command of Captain Taylor), nurses, Ambulance Brigade (males) under the command of Chief Superintendent A. W. Bartlam and Assistant Superintendent Debney, Ambulance Brigade (females) under the commands of Chief Superintendent Mrs. J. W. White. Councillor J. H. A. Whitler (Mayor of Wenlock Borough), Mr. F. H. Potts (town clerk of Wenlock Borough), Alderman D. L. Prestage, Councillors T. I. Griffiths, J. Nicklin, and G. Keay, honorary members (Captain Forester and Dr. Boon), Female Lodges, Order of Oddfellows, Madeley Brass Band (under the leadership of Mr. E. Tram-ter), Order of Foresters, and Order of Modern Masons. The Rev. P. R. Bartley (vicar of Albrighton) was the preacher, and Councillor J Nicklin read the lesson. The choir was under the direction of Mr. W. H. Griffiths, and Miss Hilda Watkis, L.R.A.M., presided at the organ. A large crowd was present to witness the huge procession on its way to church marshalled by Messrs. T. Pritchard, H. Griffiths, T. Lloyd, G. Wilde, A. Humphries, and T. Pryce. From the Town Hall the band proceeded to the grounds of the Victoria Institute, and there played selections of music. The total collections were £22 10s., which sum will be devoted to the Salop Infirmary Shrewsbury Eye and Ear Hospital, Iron Bridge Dispensary, and other charitable institutions. There was a large and energetic committee, of which Mr J. Watkins was chairman, Mr. W. H. Ball vice-chairman, Mr J. Morgan treasurer, the secretarial duties being in the hands of Mr. G. P. Bagley, to whom the success of the undertaking is mainly due.

21st September 1912



A gloom was cast over the village of Jackfield, near Iron-Bridge, when the news was circulated that the Rev. R. de Ricci (rector) had expired suddenly at the Rectory on Saturday night. The deceased gentleman had not been well for a week, and on the previous Sunday he preached his sermon sitting down. On Saturday night after his supper he went to one of the rooms, where he was afterwards found dead. The rev. gentleman, who was 60 years of age, had held the living some 18 months, and was very popular with his parishioners. He was an excellent preacher, and most generous. There was no service at the church on Sunday morning.

On Monday Mr. Coroner F. H. Potts held an inquiry at the Rectory. Before the jury viewed the body the Coroner remarked that he was voicing the sentiments and feelings of the jury in sympathising with the family of the late rector in their sudden bereavement.

Colonel R. H. Morrison, Dublin, said that the last time he saw deceased alive was at the end of July in Kempton Court, when he was on a holiday. He then appeared to be in his usual health, although he had told witness that his heart was not strong. He had not consulted a doctor.

Laura Elsie Bowen, domestic servant, Jackfield Rectory, stated that on the previous Friday she saw the rector in bed. He made no complaint, although she thought he looked very           ill. Mrs. de Ricci told her that deceased had a bad leg and was staying in bed to rest it. He took his meals as usual. On Saturday witness thought that the rector looked much better, having more colour. He had no tea that day, but she tooks his supper on about 7 o’clock in the evening, and he ate it all right. About ten minutes to nine Mrs. de Ricci rang the bedroom bell, and witness went directly upstairs and found the master lying on his face on the landing. He was groaning. She called the cook, Sarah Fletcher, who came immediately, and between them they lifted him on his back. They propped him up with pillows on the landing where he fell and covered him. The rector kept saying “I’m fainting.” Witness immediately went for Dr. Edwards.

Sarah Fletcher cook at the Rectory, gave evidence as to being present in one of the rooms with Mrs. de Ricci when the rector suddenly expired.

Dr. Fox Edwards said that the cause of death was heart failure.

The jury returned a verdict in accordance with the medical evidence.

The funeral of the rev. gentleman took place on Wednesday amid every manifestation of sorrow. Every house in the village had drawn blinds, and at the Tumbling Sailors the Union Jack floated at half-mast. The remains were interred in Broseley Cemetery, but the service was held at St. Mary’s Church, Jackfield, and was of an impressive character. The clergy present were the Revs. C. B. Crowe, R. D. (Coalbrookdale). E. V. L. Steivenard (Buildwas), A. C. Howell (Broseley), W. A. Terry (Benthall), and W. Hamlyn (Iron-Bridge). The choral service was conducted by the Rev. C. B. Crowe, assisted by the Revs. E. C. Howell and W. A. Terry. The surpliced choir sang the hymn, “Nearer, my God, to Thee,” and the “Nunc Dimittis.’ The organist     (Mr. F. Wilson) tastefully played the air. “O rest in the Lord,” as the cortege entered the church, and the “Dead March” in “Saul” after the service, whilst at the graveside the choir rendered the hymn, “Now the labourer’s task is o’er.” During the procession through the village the school children formed a guard of honour. The cortege was headed by the choir, who wore their surplices, the adult members acting as bearers. The mourners were the three brothers-in-law. Colonel Morrison, Lord Errington, and Captain Kennedy-Purvis Messrs. E. and H. Exley, and the servants, Miss Bowen and Fletcher. Among others present were the clergy, Messrs. W. H. Smith and Chas. H. Hughes (wardens), T. Price and J. Hearn (sidesmen), Dr. G. D. Collins, Captain George Forester, Messrs. H. W. Hamilton, W. H. H. Rawden  Smith, G. Gray, Dr. Fox-Edwards, Messrs. W. Jones, W. Price, C. C. Bruff, F. Brookes, E. W. Shorting, C. H. Shorting, A. Smith, W. Davis, A. Ball, G. H. Roe, F. Wilson, E. W. Ball, J. Harrison, H. Potts, E. Harrison, H. Hughes,  Hayter, F. Hambleton, Theodore Doughty, T. Ball, D. Morris, H. Pellowe, and A. Harrison. The funeral arrangements were satisfactorily carried out by Messrs. W. Lloyd and Sons, Iron-Bridge. The following sent wreaths and flowers:—Mrs. de Ricci, Lady Errington, Mrs. Kennedy Purvis, Mrs. Hobart Morrison, “R. F. H. G., and C. C. Morrison (nephews).” the Misses Thornhill, “ the Maids at the rectory” Mrs. J. A. Exley and family, Lord and Lady Forester, Mr. and Mrs. C. Fetcher, Mr. and Mrs Shepherd, “Mr. and Mrs. Hart and all at, 31, Bernard Gardens,” Mrs. Barwell, Mr and Mrs. Rumsby, the Rev A. and Mrs. Terry, Dr and Mrs. Richmond, Mr and Mrs. Gerald Heywood, “The Mothers’ Union, Jackfield,” Mr. and Mrs. Prestage, Mr and Mrs, Ernest Shorting, teachers and scholars of Jackfield Day School, Mrs. Sandbach Parker and Miss Parker, Mr and Mrs. W. Jones and family &c.

21st September 1912


THE MARRIAGE took place at St. John’s Church on Tuesday of Mr. George Herbert Denson (elder son of Mr. John Denson, of Willey) and Miss Ada Holland (second daughter of Mr. Frederick John Holland, of Dorchester). The bride, who was given away by her father, was attired in a dress of cream eolienne trimmed with lace and satin, and cell of tulle with wreath of orange blossom. She wore a gold pendant, and carried a shower bouquet of lilies-of-the-valley, roses, and orchids (gifts of the bridegroom). The bridesmaids were Miss Mina Holland (sister of the bride), and Miss May Denson (sister of the bridegroom). They wore dresses of pale blue silk voile, with Oriental trimmings and satin to match; they also wore black picture hats underlined with pale pink and trimmed with a spray of pink roses. They carried shower bouquets of pink carnations and lilies-of-the-valley, and wore silver wrist watches (the gifts of the bridegroom). The officiating clergyman was the Rev. W. H. Wayne, of Willey. Mr. R. Holland (brother of the bride) acted as groomsman. At the conclusion of the ceremony, a reception was held at the home of the bridegroom. Later Mr. and Mrs. Denson left for Lichfield for the honeymoon.

28th September 1912



Before Mr. J. H. A. Whitley (Mayor), Alderman T. Cooke, and Captain the Hon. Geo. Forester.

TRANSFERS.—The license of the Three Tuns, Iron-Bridge was transferred to Mr. Geo, Williams; the Red Lion, Madeley, to Mr. J. Richards; and the Talbot Inn, Broseley, to Mr. Thos. Davies.

No LIGHT.— William Rutter, the eleven-year-old son of Samuel Rutter, fishmonger, Broseley, was charged with driving a vehicle without a light.— Police-constable Churm said that when he was in Waterloo Street, Iron-Bridge, he saw a horse and cart coming in the direction of the free bridge. There was no light; he stopped the horse, and asked why there was no light. Defendant replied that he did not know that the light was out.— Defendant pleaded guilty, stating that he had taken some furniture to Kemberton for Mrs. Scott.— The mother of the lad said that the father was not well, and that was the reason the lad was in charge of the lorry. He should never go out again with it.—The Bench considered the practice dangerous, and made an order on the father to pay the costs.

DRUNKENNESS.— William Jones was charged with being drunk and disorderly at Broseley. — John Hoff, ironworker, Dawley, stated that on a Sunday night he was coming on a bicycle from Linley Brook, and when near the Broseley Hospital he saw a man staggering about the road, and eventually he came in front of witness and knocked him off the bicycle. Witness could not work the following week. His lamp was also broken. Defendant used very bad language, and consequently he gave information to the police. — Police-constable Edwards stated that he saw defendant at his lodgings the same night; defendant was in a drunken condition and his language was shocking.— Defendant, who did not appear, was fined 5s. and costs Hoff was allowed 10s. expenses.


28th September  1912     


PRESENTATION.— A pleasing function took place at the Boat Inn on Saturday, when Mr. J. B. Williams, jun., who is emigrating to California, was presented with a handsome travelling-bag by the executive of the Jackfield P.A. and a few friends. The Chairman (Mr. A. Evans), in making the presentation, referred to the valuable assistance Mr. Williams had always rendered in his position as vice-chairman. The recipient suitably responded. The rest of the evening was given up to harmony, in which the following took part: Messrs. P. Price, J. Shelly, A. Jones, W. Perkins, and A. Harrington A. Evans, J. Hearn, T. Pritchard, and G. Lewis. Messrs. A. Harrington and C. Jones carried out the arrangements.

12th October 1912


DISTRICT COUNCIL, Wednesday.— Councillor J. Nicklin presided.— The business transacted was purely of a routine character.—The Chairman said that he had been petitioned by some people to light up Ball’s Lane.—The meeting instructed the surveyor (Mr. Geo. Stevenson) to obtain estimates for the carrying out of the work.

DEATH or MR. H LLOYD.— On Saturday Mr. Henry Lloyd died at his residence, the Pheasant Hotel. Deceased, who was 54 years of age, had been employed as clerk in the offices of Messrs. Maw and Co., Ltd., Jackfield, about 42 years, and was greatly esteemed. He was a keen sportsman, having taken a great interest in local cricket and football for some years. He had been a member of the “Rose of Sharon” Lodge of Oddfellows for many years, and a contingent from the lodge attended the funeral, which took place in the Parish Church-yard on Wednesday, the service in the church and at the graveside being conducted by the Rev. A. C. Howell (rector). The address prescribed by the I.O.O., was delivered by Mr. W. Price (C.S.). The deceased leaves a wife and four children. The mourners were:— Harley, Herric, and Leslie (sons), Marion (daughter), Mr. Charles Lloyd (brother), Mrs. Attwood (sister). Mrs. Hollyoake (sister), Messrs. Edwin Davis (Homer), H. Wase, Ernest A. Wase, Ed-win Ryalls, Stephen Ryalls, Osborne Ryalls, Edwin Francis (cousins), Mr. and Mrs. Beddle (brother-in-law and sister-in-law), also a large gathering of friends, among whom were:— Messrs. S. Hill, J. H. Rushton, P. A. Dixon,  I. H. Onions, W. Instone, W. Bowyer, A. Wilde (Benthall), G. Roberts (Coneybury), J. E. Smith (representing the Broseley Excelsior Cricket Club), Mr. Isaac Cross (representing Benthall Junior F.C.), Mr. Smithies (Rochdale), W. Watkins, Mr. Moore (Duke of York), W. Penson, F. Powell (Willey), J. Curran (Linley), J. T. Williams, E. Stephan (Coalport), J. Watkins, P. Mason (Iron-Bridge), W. Bennett, F. Price, A. Leadbetter, H. Watkins, J. Ball (Jackfield), Thomas Jones, G. Cadwallader, G. V. Cox, G. Moore (Queen Street), T. Marlow (Lord Hill), P. Blackford (Benthall), H. Haynes, V. Aston, T. Cox,  D. Potts, J. Norry, W. Taylor, A. Watson, F. Potts, J. Seabury, and Joseph Jones (Fox Lane). A large number of beautiful wreaths were contributed by relatives and friends, including one from the Broseley Excelsior Cricket Club and one from the Benthall Junior Football Club.

5th October 1912


 BROSELEY SEPTUAGENARIAN’S DEATH. At Broseley on Wednesday Mr. Coroner F. H. Potts held an inquiry touching the death of Samuel Lears, Lloyd’s Head, Jackfield, which occurred at the Forester Hospital on Monday. The G. W. Railway Company were represented by Chief Divisional Inspector Lark (Worcester), and Mr. Eaton (stationmaster, Iron-Bridge) was also present.

Samuel Lewis, jun., (son, of deceased), said that his father was 71 years of age and was a labourer, but had not worked for some years. Deceased went to Shrewsbury by train on the previous Thursday to hear the bands and was expected back by the 8 o’clock train. About 8.30 at night witness was sent for to the station at Iron-Bridge, where he saw his father in the waiting-room lying down, but be did not speak. Deceased was removed to the hospital.

Edward Roper, foreman porter at Iron-Bridge Station, said that he was on the plat-form when the train came into the station. His attention was called to a door being opened, and he walked along the platform to this compartment, and found a cap on the seat. The compartment was empty. Witness passed down the platform to the rear of the train, and a young lady passenger told him that she saw a man fall out of the compartment a quarter-of-a-mile from the station. He then went along the line with two others in the direction of Shrewsbury, and found deceased on the upside of the line lying on his side near the metal. Witness picked Lears up, and one went for a stretcher and the other a doctor, He remained with de-ceased until the doctor arrived. Deceased was conscious, and told witness that he thought he was at the station, and opened the door.

William Christopher, stationmaster, Buildwas stated that he saw the train at Buildwas station which he started. All the doors of the carriages were closed when the train left.

Louisa Poole, nursing sister at the Lady Forester Hospital, Broseley, said that she was present when deceased was brought to the hospital on Thursday night. She nursed him until he died on Monday. Deceased never mentioned anything about the accident; in fact, he never seemed to have realised that he had met with an accident.

Dr. J. G. Boon said that deceased had three ribs broken on the right side and two on the left and extensive cuts on the top of his head which necessitated ten stitches. The case was serious from the first.

Agnes Walters, a married daughter of de-ceased, stated that when she saw her father in the hospital on Monday he was quite conscious, and she asked him how he met with the accident, and whether the door was shut or opened, and he replied ‘‘Open.”

Inspector David Evans (Worcester), in the employ of the G.W. Railway Company, stated that he saw deceased at the hospital on the Friday. He was conscious. Witness explained to him that he came to make inquiries into the accident. and asked deceased why he opened the door, and deceased replied that he thought he was at the station, and further added that he did not remember whether he had been asleep,

The verdict of the jury was “That deceased accidentally fell out of the train, and died from the injuries received.”




12th October 1912


No LIGHTS.—The Rev. J. W. Reader, curate, Willey was charged with riding a bicycle with-out a light.— Police-constable Edwards stated; that about 9 p.m. on a Sunday night he met the rev. gentleman riding a bicycle on the highway leading from Willey Lodge to the Dean without a light. He stopped defendant. and asked him why he had no light, and he replied that it was a nice night, and he did not know the light was out.—Defendant told the Bench the same story, and the case was dismissed with a caution. Henry Reynolds, general dealer, Broseley, was charged with driving a vehicle without any light.— Police constable Edwards stated that he saw defendant driving a horse attached to a lorry on a Saturday night without a light.—Defendant’s wife appeared, and remarked that they were returning from the Bridgnorth Market, and the light went out at the top of the New Road.- Defendant was fined 18s., including costs.

26th October 1912


THE RECTORSHIP. — The Rev. R. Gillenders (curate of Madeley), has been offered and has accepted the living of Jackfield, vacant through the sudden demise of the Rev. de Ricci. The Rev. R. Gillenders, who is a powerful preacher, was formerly rector of Kilcooley, Tipperary; and was educated at Trinity College, Dublin. The last two years he has been curate of Madeley, where he has made many friends.

19th October 1912



With the object of starting a bacon factory in the district Mr. A. Corner on Tuesday came down from London, and addressed a meeting at the Town Hall, on the subject, “Now English farmers can astonish the world.” There was a very poor attendance.

Captain the Hon. George Forester presided, and was supported by Messers. W. Bishop, J. Nicklin, and Shuker (secretary).

The Chairman at the outset remarked that this was not a political gathering, but a meeting convened for the purpose of trying to improve that industry which was most vital to the welfare of every country, namely, agriculture. (Applause.) They had heard a great deal of talk lately about our Navy and Army, but in his opinion it was no good to pay large sums of money for the upkeep o the Army and Navy if they were going to be starved out. (Applause.) He could never make out why the statesmen of either party had not brought this question more to the front than they had done. It was absolutely necessary to the safety of the Empire that they should be able to feed themselves for a certain period. (Applause.) As long as the world went on, war was certain to be a factor that they could not dismiss from their minds. The very first thing a general in command of any Army did if landed in a foreign country, was to provide for the feeding of his troops. In their insular position there was no denying the fact that four-fifths of the food supply came over the sea in steamships, and he thought it was about time that that condition should cease, and that there should be more co-operation amongst the home farmers and small holders to effect this. (Applause.) The number of acres under wheat in this island in 1871 was 8,700,000, but in 1911, with an increased population it had shrunk to 1,800,000; thus they would plainly see that agriculture had been decaying; and it was a matter of history that when once a nation allowed its agriculture to decay it meant that the end of that nation as an empire, or first-class power, was in sight. (Hear, hear.) He advised them to put their heads together to see what, could be done, without bringing politics into the question, to improve what was certainly the first industry of any country, and thus they would be doing a great thing for our Motherland and this great empire. (Applause.)

Mr. Corner then addressed the meeting. He said he was exceedingly fortunate because he had listened to a speech with which he entirely agreed. The chairman had covered a lot of ground, because he had studied the question for years. He was sure that the Captain’s heart was in the matter, and that he would do his best to bring about an improved state of affairs.(Applause.) He believed that the landlords had the power practically to revolutionise, in a quiet way, the condition of affairs in England, and he thoroughly believed that a quiet revolution was coming along the lines of co-operation, which meant that more land was going to be put under cultivation, and he believed the chairman was in agreement with it. If they had more land under cultivation they would have more food to eat. England was going to reconsider the question of the land. He divided his address into three parts, the need, the way to meet the need, and the result to farmers which would ensue if they did what he suggested they ought to do. With reference to the need, they would probably be astonished when he would tell them that in London on the previous Friday there were more buyers than sellers. Practically the whole of the bacon was sold out, and he therefore would ask them the simple question why was it that their English farmers were so supine in going in for the pig if it was necessary for them to have the bacon? The prices in bacon had that day gone up to another 3s. per cwt. In fact for the last 11 weeks there had been a diminution of imports of bacon of no less than 235,000 cwt, which meant that the whole world was in the same position—there was a world shortage. It was, he said, common knowledge that the cost of living was becoming excessive throughout the world, and in Germany the government had to put down import duties because the price of meat was simply prohibitive. In Germany they were giving 3s. for a pig’s pluck. In 1810 in America there were 26,000,010 hogs to a human population of 17,000,000; but in 1910 there were 47,000,000 hogs, and 92,000,000 people. He wanted to show to them the need of production in England. Having given other figures showing that they must not depend on America in the future, he remarked that they must produce more in their own country if they wished to be a strong nation, and that strength must be got out of their own land and not from imported food. (Applause.) The Continent, he said, was in a worse condition than America. The whole world was needing foodstuffs. Co-operation was not much good of itself; they must get more people on the land, and then there would be plenty of room for co-operation. Why, he asked,  would not the English farmer co-operate? He was the biggest individualist in the world, and believed in standing on his own legs, and hated the idea of working with anyone else. He (the speaker) did not believe that the English farmer understood the meaning of Co-operation. To make a bacon factory the farmer must co-operate to breed pigs, but any pig would not do for bacon. The farmers should try to breed a particular type of pig, which the lecturer explained. Co-operation, he observed, meant increased production. They wanted the farmer to make more money and to put a portion of it to increase his facility of doing business. Having explained how this could be done, he said that the first English Co-operative Bacon Factory was a paying concern after six months’ working. He thought that that ought to encourage the Shropshire farmers to look into the matter for themselves, and he suggested that they erect a factory in that district right away. (Hear, hear.)

The Chairman asked the meeting if they would like to have a factory erected in Broseley, but there was no reply.

Votes of thanks were passed to the lecturer and the chairman.

9th November 1912


DISTRICT COUNCIL. Wednesday.— Present:— Alderman D. L. Prestage (chairman), Lord Forester, Councillors G. B. Collins, T. J. Griffiths, A. A. Exley, J. Nicklin, and G. Keay, Messrs. F. E. Potts (town clerk). C. Stevenson (surveyor), H. Herbert (sanitary inspector), P. Oakes (collector), and E. Abberley (water inspector).— Mr. Herbert reported that the district was free from notifiable infectious disease.- Messrs. Bird and Evans wrote respecting their houses at Jackfield, stating that a considerable sum of money had already been spent in the repair of these houses, and that if they did more work they would be compelled to increase the rents.- The meeting decided that the work pointed out by the inspector most be carried out.- The Clerk reported that there was a debit balance on the two accounts of £91. Bills required for payment amounted to £90, which would bring the debit balance up to £181 -The collector was instructed to issue the final notice for the clearing up of the water rate. - The Surveyor reported that the Gasworks Company’s tender for fixing four lamps and laying the mains in Ball’s Lane was £60.— The Chairman asked if it was necessary to light up this road.— Mr. Nicklin replied that since the new bridge had been erected this road was very much used. There was no question in his mind about the need, but whether they could afford it was another matter. He thought that the company should meet the Council in the matter.— Mr. Keay thought that the price was excessive.-Messrs. Nicklin and Griffiths were deputed to see the Company on the matter.- The surveyor’s expenditure for the past month was £46.— He was ordered to widen the road near the old rope walk.— Complaints were made concerning a quantity of paper and straw being in the streets on Sundays, and the surveyor was asked to remedy the nuisance.- Mr. Abberley reported that he had examined all the water mains at Jackfield and Broseley and found them all in good working order. The pumping had been very satisfactory during the past mouth.- The Chairman read a petition numerously signed by the residents of Coalport asking the Council to support the scheme for the erection of a footbridge near the old ferry. It went on to state that since the removal of the ferry-boat great inconvenience was caused to lower Jackfield, and also to the working people, who had to travel a long distance to work.- Mr. Nicklin reported that meetings of the joint committees had taken place concerning the proposed footbridge, and that Councillor Maddox surprised him when he stated he had received a letter from the engineer stating that their lowest estimate for the erection of a concrete bridge was £550 and not £250 as he previously stated. He added that the cause of this was the increased price in material during the last few months. The Joint Committee referred the matter to the Madeley and Broseley Committees for further consideration, and he (Mr. Nicklin) considered that was the only course they could take.- The Chairman said that they decided at a previous meeting to erect a bridge at a cost not exceeding £250.— Mr. Nicklin was of opinion that the two Sanitary Committees should reconsider the matter— In reply to Mr. Keay, the Chairman said that a concrete bridge was the cheapest. —The Clerk maintained that a bridge across the Severn was bound to be a borough bridge, and the question should therefore he considered by the Borough Council, and that was what they would have to do before they could do anything.— According to the clerk’s ruling, the Chairman said, they were going beyond their powers to spend a farthing on the bridge.— Mr. Nicklin said that Mr. Maddox maintained that as the public demanded a bridge they should have it, whereas another member of the Madeley Committee contended that a number of ratepayers were against spending any more money on a new bridge.— Mr. Griffiths said that if the scheme were not adopted some road should be made for the people.— Mr. Nicklin observed that they should devise some way or other to build a bridge.- After further discussion the clerk was instructed to write the petitioners, stating that whilst the Council were in sympathy with the proposal, they had no power or right to build a bridge.


16th November 1912



The annual meeting of the Wenlock Borough Council was held on Saturday at the Guildhall; present:- Councillor J. H. A. Whitley (mayor), Lord Forester, Alderman A. B. Dyas, T. Cooke, G. Lloyd, F. G. Beddoes, W. J. Legge, D. L. Prestage, J. Davies, Captain George Forester, Councillors W. Bishop, W. G. Dyas, B. Maddox, F. Bagnall, G. Keay, T. J. Griffiths. J. Jenks, A. L. Hayes, J. E. A. Wolryche-Whitmore, S. R. Maw, J. Nicklin, W. Roberts, W. F. Bevan, A. A. Exley, C. Edwards, T. Morris, W. J. Milner, and J. Roberts, with Messrs. F. H. Potts (town clerk), G. Stevenson (surveyor), N. Herbert (sanitary inspector), A. H. Thorn-Pudsey (magistrates’ clerk), and J. S. Barker (borough treasurer).

A report of the election of Councillor Bishop as Mayor appears in another column. The Clerk stated that the quarterly bills amounted to £560 7s. 8d.; there was a sum of £277 11s. in hand, which left the sum of £282 16s. 8d. to be raised by a rate.— Alderman Davies proposed that the accounts be paid, and that a borough rate of 1½d. in the pound be levied.— Mr. Whiteley seconded, and the motion was carried.

The Mayor said that the next business was to receive the report of the visitors to the Asylum.— Alderman Cooke said that there was no formal report to bring before them respecting the Asylum, and referred to the increased cost of 2s. per head during the last 20 years caused  through the increased price of  articles, over which, of course, they had no control.- Mr. W. Roberts proposed that the report be adopted, and that Messrs. Cooke and Whitley be re-elected visitors to the Asylum.— Captain George Forrester seconded the motion, which was carried.

It was decided unanimously to increase the salary of Mr. H. Herbert, sanitary inspector, £10 a year in consequence of increased duties under the Housing and Town Planning Act, and to appoint him inspector under the Shops Act at a salary of £5.

In reply to Mr. Maddox, the Clerk stated that there was probably a balance in hand from the Education Committee of £1,200; but the committee had decided to transfer £.1,000 to the borough fund, to be devoted to the Asylum loan account.— Alderman Cooke thought that the Elementary Education Committee were deserving of congratulation to turn over such a respectable balance. They had done their best for the children and looked after the finances of the borough. (Applause.)— Mr. Maddox thought that they should all know what balance there was in hand, and he hoped now that the mightier authority would do the work better and cheaper, and he contended that the sum of £2,000 should come back to the borough fund, and that the ratepayers of the borough should thereby benefit.

Captain Forester referred to the bad condition of the road to the Sanatorium, and ex-pressed the opinion that the borough should send a deputation to the County Council, asking for a substantial grant for the repair of the road.— Mr. Maddox was of opinion that before they went to the County Council the borough should do something towards the road.— Captain Forester said that the County Council were willing to give £400 provided the borough put down another £400. He pointed out to them that this was a county institution, and he did not see why the borough should be called upon to pay one farthing. (Hear, hear.)— Mr. Edwards moved that a deputation be appointed to approach the County Council on the matter.— Alderman Davies seconded.— Alderman Cooke said that the County Council looked upon this institution as private, and could not grant £800 to a body that did not represent the County Council.- Mr. Maddox thought the best thing to do was to appoint a committee, and then a deputation. He did not think that the County Council should find the whole sum, for it was a road in a particular ward of that borough.— Alderman Beddoes thought it would be well for them to wait the result of the meeting that day at Shrewsbury before they arrived at anything.— Captain Forester considered that a wise suggestion.— The motion was, however, carried.

Mr. Maddox brought up the question of the proposed new footbridge across the Severn at Coalport.— The Clerk said he told the Broseley Committee last week that they had no right or power to spend a farthing on the building of a bridge, which was a borough matter. It could only spend money on urban matters.— Mr. Maddox said it was a matter of great urgency, and he proposed that a special committee be appointed to consider and report what steps should be taken in dealing with it.— Mr. Nicklin seconded. He did so because he thought they should know what they could do with the public money. They had spent £100 towards the erection of one bridge, and why, he asked, could they not do it again?— Alderman Prestage sup-ported the motion. A footbridge, he said, was needed. They did not ask other wards to find the money, but they wanted their consent to do the work.— Alderman Cooke said he should like to know very much more before they dealt with a question of this sort. They had had the bridge, and a good many of them regretted it. Speaking for Wenlock, they did not want it. Those who would benefit by the bridge should, he maintained, find the money. They had as many burdens as they could already bear.- Mr. Edwards observed that they had been “drawn in” over the other bridge, and they should proceed very carefully now.— Captain Forester was of opinion that they should know their position in a straightforward manner.— Mr. Maddox said that all they asked for was an inquiry. They had all got their troubles:— Alderman Beddoes considered that before they arrived at any decision other wards should consider the matter. They were told at first that the erection of a bridge would only cost £250, and now it had risen to £550. He agreed that a bridge was necessary, but the question was the finding of the money.- The motion was carried by 11 votes, to 10.

23rd November 1912



On Wednesday Mr. Coroner F. H. Potts held an inquiry into the death of John Boddington Spalding (58), landlord of the Cape of Good Hope Inn, Broseley, who committed suicide by hanging on Monday night.

Samuel Spalding (brother), licensee of the Compasses Inn, Burton-on-Trent, said that he had received letters from deceased stating that he had trouble with his wife; but witness had not seen deceased since August last.

Harry Russel, present tenant of the Cape Inn, deposed that he saw deceased about 10-30 on Monday night. He was sober and appeared all right. Deceased’s wife went away a week ago. Spalding took to drink some time since, and a fortnight ago witness heard him say that he would hang himself on account of trouble with his wife, who drank heavily.

Police-constable Edwards stated that about 9-30 on. Tuesday morning he was called by Messrs. Alleopp’s (brewers) representative, Mr. G. E. Finch, Shrewsbury, to go to the Cape Inn, which was locked up. Witness knocked, and, obtaining no answer, burst open the kitchen window, and entered the house. He found deceased hanging by the neck from the banister of the stairs by the cord produced, and with the assistance of Mr. E. Wilde witness cut down the body. Deceased’s feet were about two feet from the floor. Deceased had been drinking lately, as also had his wife. Spalding had notice to leave from the firm (Messrs. Allsopp and Co.), and consequently had given notice of transfer of the license at Iron-Bridge. He had been living by himself since his wife went away.

Edward Wilde, cowkeeper, Benthall, stated that he called with the milk on Tuesday morning, but the place was locked up. He was present when Police-constable Edwards cut down the body. On Monday deceased asked witness to get the rope produced to pack a box to send to his wife.

The jury returned a verdict of “Suicide whilst temporarily insane.”

23rd November 1912


TUESDAY.-  Before Messrs. W. Bishop (mayor), A, B. Dyas. W. Roberts, F. R. Smith, W. J. Legge, F. G. Beddoes, J. Davies, and B. Maddox.

WELCOMED.- Mr. F. R. Smith, in welcoming the new Mayor (Mr. Bishop) on the Bench, remarked that this was the first time that he (Mr. Bishop) had ever attended a police court in any shape or form, but they hoped to see him with them often during his year of office. They all knew his qualifications, and he was sure they could not have made a better choice for mayor. (Applause.)— The Mayor, returning thanks, expressed the hope that would never have more to do than was before him that morning.

FIRST CASE DISMISSED.— William Williams, labourer, Jackfield, was charged with being drunk.— Police-constable Reeves stated that he found defendant lying in the road by Ladywood. When he picked him up he found that defendant was drunk, but he was very civil.— The Mayor told the wife, who appeared, that as this was his first case it would be dismissed.

LICENSING. - Harry Russell, full-back for Iron-Bridge Football Club, made application for the transfer of the Cape of Good Hope (Broseley) license.— The Magistrates’ Clerk stated that the license was held by Mr. John Spalding, who had that morning committed suicide. He saw Spalding on Monday, when he promised to attend the Court and consent to the transfer— Mr. Finch (agent) said that they had searched for the license, but could not find it.— A temporary transfer was, however granted.

30th November 1912



Mach credit is due to Captain the Hon. Geo. Forester for successfully persuading the Lady Forester Trust, of which he is Chairman of the Board of Management, to go in for radium treatment, and on Wednesday before a large and representative assembly Mrs. George Forester (wife of Captain Forester) opened two wards at the Broseley Hospital for patients under radium treatment.

After prayer by the Rev. A. C. Howell (rector), Dr. J. G. Boon (house surgeon), in introducing Mrs. Forester, said: I beg to ex-press, on behalf of the medical staff, our gratitude to the Lady Forester Trustees for their kindness in supplying us with this radium. I think I am safe in saying that we have the third, if not the second, largest quantity in the United Kingdom, over £2,000 worth. We started applying it in March, and up to now 18 cases have undergone the treatment; total number of applications 69, total number of hours radium was on 696. The length of the applications has varied from half-an-hour to 24 hours, and there is usually a month to six weeks between each treatment. Some of the results have been wonderful; others not so satisfactory; but I would ask you to bear in mind that we have had desperate cases to deal with. Among the cases we have had cancers of all sorts, primary and recurrent, ulcerated legs, and tubercular wounds. Cases have come from all over Shropshire. But I think, after this ceremony, it will be better known that we have this supply of radium here, and our radium wards will be full all the time, and cases come from other counties besides Shropshire. I truly believe that there is a great future in the treatment, but we are only at the start of it. In conclusion I should like to acknowledge the trustees’ and Dr. Ross Macdonald’s kindness for getting me facilities in London to see how the treatment was carried on before I started here. (Applause).

Mrs. Forester then opened the door of the wards with a gold key and expressed the pleasure it gave her to do so, saying that she earnestly hoped, they would prove a great benefit to mankind. (Applause.) Master P. G. Boon afterwards presented Mrs. Forester with a beautiful bouquet, which that lady acknowledged.

Sir J. B. Bowen-Jones said that he had the privilege of proposing a vote of thanks to Mrs. Forester for having opened the new wards at the hospital. The Forester family, he said, had always been honourably associated with all charitable and good work, particularly so in that neighbourhood. (Applause). There was a similar hospital to this at Much Wenlock, and there was the Llandudno Convalescent Home, founded by the Forester family and within the last two or three years Lord Forester had presented that magnificent site at Shirlett for the Sanatorium, a site that was not surpassed by any other in the United Kingdom. (Applause.) They in Shropshire should feel proud of having such a family living in their midst— a family that had done so much for the public well. (Applause.) He could not help feeling that it was satisfactory to them to know that the future or younger generation were following in the footsteps of their predecessors. Mrs. Forester was always taking an active part in public life, and was always ready to do what good she could for her neighbours. (Applause.) It was indeed a great satisfaction to have ladies in her influential position taking such active part in charitable works. (Applause.)

The Mayor, in seconding the proposition, also referred to the good qualities of Mrs. Forester. He said that they had an excellent staff at the hospital, and he had been told by a patient that no one could be treated better than they were at the Lady Forester Hospitals. (Applause.) — The motion was carried with acclamation.

In returning thanks, Captain Forester remarked that some two or three years ago, he was so much impressed with what a friend of his had told him of this wonderful mineral that he persuaded his co-trustees and Charity Commissioners to allow them to expend some money on radium, and after they had got it, they did not want to run any risks of other patients getting the malignant disease, so he obtained permission to put up these little wards, so that they could be treated quite apart from the rest of the hospital, which perhaps would save a great deal. (Applause.) Although he had been laid up for a few days, and was unable to attend the political meeting, he was determined to come to the hospital that day, as be was chairman of the Board of Management, and try to forward the work of which they had been so pleased to show their appreciation (Hear, hear ) He would like to say that their capital fund at the end of 1905 was £336,000, and today they were down to £280,000.

Mr. T. C Shingler, the indefatigable secretary, informed the gathering that Lord Forester would like to present everyone that day with a souvenir of the proceedings, which he then handed round.

Tea was served in the men’s ward, which was tastefully decorated for the occasion and presented a cheerful appearance. Miss Raynor (matron) conducted this part of the proceedings, which was thoroughly enjoyed. After the tea Dr. Boon showed the visitors the radium, and explained the records and results.

The new radium wards are intended for patients suffering from malignant disease, and have been erected by the trustees and Hospitals Board of Management, with the sanction of the Charity Commissioners, out of certain funds belonging to the Lady Forester Trust. There are two wards, each with two beds, with a nurse’s duty-room separating them. Each ward has cubical contents of 3,100 feet, and a floor space of 210 square feet. The cost of the building is about £299, which works out at slightly less than 5d. per cubic foot, and the whole of the work has been carried out by local workmen employed by the Hospitals Board. Broseley bricks and tiles have been used, and all fittings were purchased locally.