Mexborough & Swinton Times, January 14, 1927
Retirement of John Brocklesby
The chief news this week is the impending retirement of Coun. John Brocklesby after a long term of service to the community.
It is practically 40 years since Mr. Brocklesby came to Conisborough and for nearly all that time he has been concerned in local government. Mr. Brocklesby does not intend to retire altogether from public life, but he will not contest in the East Ward at the next U.D.C. Election. The intimation was conveyed in a letter to the Citizen’s Association which state that he felt it was time to make way for younger men. He was glad to have played some small part in the formation and development of the Council and its duties and responsibilities stood very high in his estimation. He desired for it the largest measure of success. He did not wish to break with all his work and if the Council approved he would like to continue his Educational duties.
Conisborough will regret the retirement of Mr. Brocklesby for he has an exceptional knowledge of local administration. ‘Though I did not always agree with him, I am sorry, for he knew more than the rest of us put together,’ I heard a local councillor say when he heard the news, ‘We shall very much miss him in the Council chamber.’
Forty years ago Mr. Brocklesby resided near to Kearsley Brook which was at times offensive and he attended a vestry meeting where parish business was then transacted, to voice his opinions. He was shortly afterwards concerned in the cemetery. He was on the side of the victors, though he made some enemies among the church people. ‘Do you want me to be buried like a dog?’ was one of the outbursts of the late Mr. G. T. Nicholson, but Mr. Brocklesby assured him that if the land was as God made it, consecration could not improve it. And the cemetery has been in use for 35 years.
It is 35 years ago since he threw in his lot with the advocates of urban powers, but the first agitation died down when the late Mr. Godfrey Walker assured the parishioners that they would get all the amenities they desired under a Parish Council. The Parish Council was not as progressive as was desired and Mr. Brocklesby became secretary of an Urban Powers Committee. This time there was strong opposition from Denaby and once when he was addressing a meeting in the Conisborough Schools a crowd of opponents came from Denaby headed by a brass band. Though his supporters varnished Mr. Brocklesby stood his ground and obtained a hearing. Later he became chairman of this committee and gave evidence at the Government enquiry which resulted in obtaining the powers in 1921.