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1981

Evening Sentinel Jan 2nd 1981 Page 1 Crewe
A major row is blowing up over fears of a pit closure and job losses in the North Staffs coalfield. A question mark hangs over the future of Victoria colliery.

Evening Sentinel Jan 8th 1981 Page 1 Crewe.
A tiny plot of land in the village of Halmerend became a permanent shrine to the victims of two mining disasters at the Minnie pit.

Evening Sentinel Jan 22nd 1981 Page 15 Crewe.
North staffs branch of the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors went on a five-hour tour of Silverdale colliery with some of their London colleagues.

Evening Sentinel Jan 24th 1981 Page 24 F.F.
Florence colliery was working normally today after 40 miners were sent home for safety reasons. There was a fault on the winding gear at No.2 shaft.

Evening Sentinel Jan 31st 1981 Page 4 L.
H. Newton has retired as superintendent of the NCB Berry Hill Mines Rescue Station. He has been associated with the mines Rescue Service for forty years.

Evening Sentinel Feb 14th 1981 Page 1 Crewe.
Full details of the controversial cut backs planned for the Staffordshire coalfield will be revealed when the NCB and union leaders meet on Monday.

Evening Sentinel Feb 16th 1981 Page 1. Crewe.
Controversial NCB cut backs, which are expected to include the close down of Victoria colliery, Biddulph, were outlined to union leaders this afternoon.

Evening Sentinel Feb 17th 1981 Page 1 Crewe
A cool it plea went out to North Staffs miners today as a lightning 24 hour strike halted production at the doomed Victoria colliery.

Evening Sentinel Feb 18th 1981 Page 1. Crewe.
Miners in North Staffordshire are ready to vote yes in a national ballot for strike action a union chief said today. Feelings are running high and the men are determined to fight the cutbacks.

Evening Sentinel Feb 19th 1981 Page 1 Crewe.
A jubilant North staffs community were today celebrating victory, after coal board plans to close Victoria colliery were scrapped.

Evening Sentinel Feb 26th 1981 Page 6 Crewe
Sixty-nine years ago an explosion occurred at Norton colliery that, had it happened only a few hours earlier, would almost certainly have resulted in the biggest loss of life in the history of the North Staffs coalfield.

Evening Sentinel 28th Feb 1981 Page 16. L.
Investigations are continuing today after the death of Mr. W.G. Summerill. He was returning to the shaft bottom on a man-riding conveyor at the end of his shift when he collapsed or fell.

Evening Sentinel March 3rd 1981 Page 9. Crewe.
Newcastle MP John Golding has called for the illness, emphysema to be recognised as an industrial disease for potters and miners.

Evening Sentinel March 4th 1981 Page 11. F.
Six North Staffs men have retired after clocking up a total of two centuries in the coal industry. Hem Heath R. Bailey and G. Mottram. Florence H. Buttany. Silverdale R. Mayer. Staffordshire H. Q. F. Bailey and S. Pieroni.

Evening Sentinel March 6th 1981 Page 9 Crewe.
Output from the western area is 40,000 above budget. Several collieries have smashed output records including Hem Heath with 1,056,936.

Evening Sentinel March 7th 1981 Page 5. L.
Parish councillors at Audley have been told that they have enough power to call a public inquiry over plans for opencast mining in their area.

Evening Sentinel March 13th 1981 Page 7. Crewe.
Peter Cheeseman from the Victoria Theatre visited Hem Heath today and announced the date of a new performance of a new play, “Miner Dig the Coal”

Evening Sentinel March 16th 1981 Page 7. Crewe.
Miners gathered at Hem Heath colliery for the launch of the Victoria Theatre’s “Grand Pit Rhymes Competition” open to all miners and their families.

Evening Sentinel March 17th 1981 Page 10. Crewe.
Industrial review article on “Coal the fuel of the future” including a road heading machine at Silverdale that will access to a new area containing 50m tonnes of coal. Page 13 NCB chief Sir D. Ezra will visit Stoke-on-Trent later this month and spend a day at Chatterley Whitfield mining museum.

Evening Sentinel March 18th 1981 Page 1. Crewe.
Newcastle Mayor, Jack Beech went on a fact-finding tour of a new coalface at Wolstanton colliery. (Photo) Page 3. An article in “Women’s World.” about Chatterley Whitfield mining museum.

Evening Sentinel March 19th 1981 Page 1. Crewe.
A new golden handshake for miners could spark off a big rush in North Staffs for early retirement. It could also give a boost to job recruitment. Page 9. There is to be a series in the weekly Sentinel on Norton colliery 1915. Page 15. Story of Wilf Simcock starting work at 14. He worked 51 years underground.

Evening Sentinel April 8th 1981 Page.
Pitmen at Hem Heath colliery have ended the coal board’s financial year with their best ever, annual output. The 1,790 men produced 1,173,370 tonnes.

Evening Sentinel April 9th 1981 Page 9 Crewe.
Stoke-on-Trent Lord mayor Mr. John Wallis held up miners as a shining example to British industry, after he emerged from a three and a half hour tour underground at Florence colliery.

Evening Sentinel April 13th 1981 Page 14. Crewe.
The NCB have changed their minds and accepted liability for subsidence damage to eight houses in Fenton.

Evening Sentinel April 14th 1981 Page 16. Crewe.
An alarming drop in NCB recruitment of apprentice craftsmen could hit coal production, a North Staffs miner’s chief said today.

Evening Sentinel April 24th 1981 Page 9. Crewe.
Fears of Scot Hay residence have been allayed over plans for open cast mining within a few hundred feet of their back gardens.

Evening Sentinel April 28th 1981 Page 12. F.
A report is expected on a new deal for a North Staffs pit, which was at the centre of a closure storm earlier this year. Victoria colliery will now remain open for at least 3 years.

Evening Sentinel April 29th 1981 Page 13. Crewe.
Ex-miner Harold Brown returned to his former home town of Silverdale on Monday to attend a VIP launch of his book entitled, “Most Splendid of Men”

Evening Sentinel May 6th 1981 Page 17. Crewe
“Miners Dig the Coal” is the 100th world premiere at the Victoria theatre. It is a new Vic musical documentary in the tradition of the Knotty and the fight for Shelton Bar. It tells the tale of the miners at Hem Heath, their work, stories, families and songs.

Evening Sentinel May 27th 1981 Page 12. Crewe.
Major coal reserves above and to the west of Chesterton and Knutton are proposed to be extracted through open cast mining over a three year period starting in 1983.

Evening Sentinel June 3rd 1981 Page 11 Crewe.
Mr. B. Dyer has been appointed the new manager of Victoria colliery, Biddulph. He succeeds Mr. D. Lane who has moved to Cronton colliery Widnes. Page 12. A coal cleaning operation at Silverdale colliery went wrong when a pipe containing waste material fractured and caused extensive pollution to the watercourses in North Staffs.

Evening Sentinel June 16th 1981 Page 1. Crewe.
An investigation into a pit accident was going on today in which 46 year old Mr. J. McGreedy was badly hurt at Great row colliery. A runaway truck hit him.

Evening Sentinel June 25th 1981 Page 24. Crewe.
A proposed four-year scheme to dump thousands of tonnes of pit dirt in the Apedale valley to reduce flooding in Silverdale was deferred last night.

Evening Sentinel July 1st 1981 Page 16 F.
Attendance figures at Stoke-on-Trent’s Chatterley Whitfield mining museum have been smashed with a record 601 visitors yesterday. By 1983 officials hope to have 120,000 visitors a year.

Evening Sentinel July 9th 1981 Page 9 F.
A new row blew up today over plans to carry out open cast mining at Scott Hay. Families say the coal board’s proposals for the North side of the village would bring working within 8 yards of their homes.

Evening Sentinel July 11th 1981 Page 1. F.
Residence of Tunstall were today assured that there was nothing to fear from an old mine shaft which suddenly opened in Clandon Ave. It was a brick lined shaft and would be dealt with.

Evening Sentinel July 21st 1981 Page 12. Crewe
Mr. Ray Hunter, director of the NCB Midlands area has retired. He was appointed on its foundation in 1974. He was awarded the OBE for his services to the mining industry.

Evening Sentinel July 28th 1981 Page 1. C.F.
Angry workers walked out and production was halted at Wolstanton colliery. The men on the day shift went home in an incentive bonus scheme row.

Evening Sentinel Aug 6th 1981 Page 1. Crewe.
Newcastle’s Mayor, Miss E. Mayer, who works in the scientific dept at Chatterley Whitfield colliery says farewell to her boss Ray hunter on his retirement. (Photo in Mayer’s parlour).

Evening Sentinel Aug 6th 1981 Page 11. F.
Mr. Gill Butler has retired as manpower planning officer at Staffordshire House. He has served 46 years in the mining industry.

Evening Sentinel Aug 12th 1981 Page 7. Crewe.
Wolstanton colliery has carried off another award in the NCB safety league competition for the second year running. (Photo of Mr. G. Irwin, manager, receiving the shield.

Evening Sentinel Aug 13th 1981 Page 1. Crewe.
Miners at Florence colliery agreed to have 50p deducted from their pay to help a 4 year old boy with a kidney complaint. The cheque was handed over br Mr. Sam Brookes, ass personal manager. (Photo)

Evening Sentinel Aug 14th 1981 Page 13. F.
Miners at Florence colliery have smashed a productivity record, which has stood for a decade. Output per man-shift hit a new peak of 3.71 tonnes. They produced 21.660 tonnes from three production faces,

Evening Sentinel Aug 22nd 1981 Page 8. L.
A party of Dutch visitors went on an underground trip at Chatterley Whitfield mining museum yesterday. They were hosted by Congleton Town to celebrate their tenth anniversary of the town twinning with Oosterhout.

Evening Sentinel Aug 27th 1981 Page 13. F.
The NCB no longer propose tipping thousands of tonnes of coal dirt in the Apedale valley to remedy subsidence damage.

Evening Sentinel Aug 31st 1981 Page 5. Crewe.
Members of a party from Trappes, the French twin town of Gongleton toured the Chatterley Whitfield mining museum. (Photo)

Evening Sentinel Sep 21st 1981 Page 7. F.
The NCB Western Area junior safety quiz started with young miners from Florence, Hem Heath and Victoria taking part.

Evening Sentinel Sep. 23rd 1981 Page 1. Crewe.
Father of five, Mr. B. Ball age 44 died today after being crushed in an underground tragedy at Silverdale.

Evening Sentinel Oct 2nd 1981 Page 14.
Photo of Mr. R. Moreland, Staffordshire East Euro MP, as he visited Hem Heath colliery today with Mr. L. Hall manager.

Evening Sentinel Oct 5th 1981 Page 1. F.
Two pitmen were recovering after being badly hurt in an underground rock fall at Silverdale colliery.

Evening Sentinel Oct 6th 1981 Page 9.
The County’s and county side committee have received inquiries about Park Hall colliery and they believe there is some merit in allowing coal production to start again.

Evening Sentinel Oct 23rd 1981 Page 1. Crewe.
Miners have stepped up their campaign to extend the life of Victoria colliery and plan to enlist the help Yorkshire militant Arthur Scargill. Page 17. Chatterley Whitfield is planning to expand, with a second underground exhibition area showing the industrial and historical development of mining.

Evening Sentinel Oct 27th 1981 Page 14. C.F.
A top team of mining engineers are being called in to give a report on the doomed Victoria colliery following claims that the closing date was premature.

Evening Sentinel Oct 30th 1981 Page 24. C.F.
Sam Brooks age 61 retired after 47 years service. Five days after he got married, he missed the force of an explosion at Sneyd colliery that killed 57 men. For the past 5 years he has been personnel manager at Florence colliery.

Evening Sentinel Oct. 30th 1981 Page 24.
Miners at Florence colliery have smashed an output record for the second time in a month. The pit’s 1,340 men produced 26,829 tonnes – 515 tonnes more than before, plus the best ever overall productivity rate of 4. 60 tonnes per man each shift.

Evening Sentinel Nov 6th 1981 Page 1. C.F.
Miners battling to save Victoria colliery were thrown a lifeline today. Coal board officials and representatives from the NUM agreed to search for new reserves in an attempt to keep the 470-man pit open.

Evening Sentinel Nov. 11th 1981 Page 7. Crewe
Thousands of Starlings are causing a flap at Hem Heath colliery. They are defying all attempts to shift them from the ‘A’ frame. Officials are concerned that the bird’s favourite roosting place could become a death trap for maintenance workers, with their droppings.

Evening Sentinel Nov 12th 1981 Page 24.
Miner’s leaders were close to a settlement, despite rejecting the latest pay offer from the NCB a North Staffs based member of the unions negotiating team said today.

Evening Sentinel Nov. 23rd 1981 Page 1. C.F.
Three leading figures in the battle for the job of NUM president will speak in Stoke-on-Trent tonight.

Evening Sentinel Nov. 27th 1981 page 11.
An exhibition, which opened at the Chatterley Whitfield mining museum yesterday now means it, can tell the whole story of coal.

Evening Sentinel Dec. 1st 1981 Page 6.
Mr. Ken Hutchinson, public relations officer for the Stoke-on-Trent based Western area, has retired after nearly 22 years.

Evening Sentinel Dec 11th 1981 Page 1. F.
Miners were holding talks today following a lightning walkout at the Victoria colliery. More than a hundred men were involved in the stoppage in a dispute on incentive bonus payments.

Evening Sentinel Dec 12th 1981 Page 7. F.
Mr. Shufflebotham who was injured in an accident at Chatterley Whitfield colliery in 1974, was awarded £40.000 in the High Court at Stafford.

Evening Sentinel Dec. 17th 1981 Page 13.
Retired Wolstanton miner, Mr. W. Mottram received a 51 years long service award from Mr. G. Irwin, colliery manager. (Photo)

Evening Sentinel Dec 21st 1981 Page 5. Crewe
The NCB have submitted planning application to the Newcastle Borough Council for a new methane booster plant at Holditch colliery and a new haulage house at No.3 drift at Silverdale colliery.

Evening Sentinel Dec. 21st 1981 Page 1. F.
A. Scargill, was today accused of trying to bully miners into voting for a strike, by Mr. Roy Ottey, General Secretary of the Power Group.

Evening Sentinel Dec. 23rd 1981 Page 1. F.
Miner’s leaders called on the North Staffs to agree to a resolution urging the NUM to support attempts to bring democracy to Poland.

Evening Sentinel Dec. 24th 1981 Page 15. Special
Sportsman voted for Joe Wills, Wolstanton colliery, among the top ten who enjoyed remarkable success in charge of both Hanley town and Sunday club, Red House football teams.

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