Conisbro’ Urban District – Something Attempted, Something Done – Decade of Progress

May 1931

Mexborough & Swinton Times – Friday 15 May 1931

Conisbro’ Urban District.

Something Attempted, Something Done.

Decade of Progress

The Conisborough Urban Council has just completed ten years of existence, a decade crowded with achievement of the most remarkable kind, as may be gathered from the data on the subject which by the courtesy of Mr. H. Thirlwall, engineer and surveyor to the Council, we have been able to collect for the purpose of this review.

Twenty Per Cent. Increase in Population

Ten years ago the new urban district had a population of 15,860 divided thus: Conisborough, 5,833; Denaby Main, 10,027. It is estimated (the exact figures will of course shortly be available) that the population to-day is 18,580, an increase of nearly 20 per cent. The rateable value in 1921 was £53,633. By 1921 it had risen to £81,666. Then came de-rating, and the figure to-day is £54,978, the district being compensated by Exchequer grants.

Highways and Sanitation.

In the last ten years the Council have re-conditioned all the highways under their, control except Elm Green Lane and Castle Avenue, which are to receive attention this year. All the important footpaths have been re-paved and altogether six miles of streets have been deal with, in addition to three miles of new street made up and taken over. Practically all the streets are scavenged daily, including Sundays.

Two and a third miles of new and enlarged sewerage have been laid and a mile of new sewage taken over from housing estates. The sewage disposal works at Burcroft, taken over from the Doncaster Rural District Council have been completely modernised at a cost of £17,000. Similarly the sewage disposal works at Denaby have been brought up to date and plans are in preparation for further extension of both the Burcroft and Denaby works, to make them capable of dealing with a dry-weather flow of 400,000 gallons a day.

The water supply is derived from the Council and the Denaby and Cadeby Main Collieries. The colliery company supply 1,880 houses and the Council 1,464. The average daily requirement of the district is 565,000 gallons a day, and the supply is drawn from a borehole at Cadeby Colliery and from the resources of the Doncaster and Tickhill Joint Water Board. There is adequate pressure for every purpose at the highest point of the district, Conanby. The number of houses receiving a piped supply to-day is 3,244.

Such services as scavenging, lighting , public and private transport, and communication have been thoroughly modernised and the district of Conisborough, a rural district ten years ago, is now as well served in these respects as any city.


During the decade 700 houses have been erected in the district. 264 by the Council, 400 by the Industrial Housing Association, for the Denaby and Cadeby Collieries (these qualifying for subsidy at the rate of £6 a year for twenty years from the Government and £2 a year for the same period from the Council) and the rest by private enterprise.


When the Council took control, the district was fairly well supplied with parks and open spaces. There was the Minniemoor, awarded by the Inclosure Acts and three small parks given by Mrs. Godfrey Walker in 1911. One of these, the Coronation Park, on the wayside in front of the Castle, has been greatly beautified and improved since it was handed over to the Council. Then the Council purchased thirty acres of rugged hillside, known as North Cliff, overlooking the Don Valley, in order to preserve it as an open space. This has been laid out with footpaths, electrically lighted, and forms a convenient and pleasant means of communication between the old mining village of Denaby Main and the new mining village of Conanby. In a sheltered corner a children’s recreation ground has been provided, and equipped at a cost of £2,000 by the trustees of the Miners’ Welfare Fund. There is to be provided at Denaby Main a wayside park corresponding to the Coronation Park at Conisborough, at a cost of £3,000 and work on this is to commence immediately.

Public Property.

The public swimming baths are now owned and controlled by the Council, having been handed over by the Miners’ Welfare Fund trustees. They are estimated to be worth £7,000. Indeed it may surprise the ratepayers of this young urban district to know how much property they really do own. Altogether it is estimated to be worth £170,900. Ten years ago they owned only the sewage works and three small parks. To-day the various sites they own are worth £5,400; in addition the Council offices are valued at £3,500, the Council houses at £95,000, the baths at £7,000, and the water works and sewage works at £60,000. In the last ten years the number of allotment gardens provided in the district has been increased from 465 to 741; a public mortuary has been provided, also a public ambulance; 1,120 privy middens have been converted at a cost of £23,000 of which the Council paid £8,300.

Outside Contributions.

And in addition to what has been provided by the local authority we have the splendid sports and recreation centre at Denaby and a smaller one at Conisborough provided by the Miners’ Welfare Fund, a “middle” school built by the West Riding County Council and an elementary school built at Denaby by the Roman Catholics, the conversion of Crookhill Hall into a county sanatorium, the extension of the isolation hospital and the small pox hospital, the extension of the cemetery at Denaby, the establishment of infant welfare centres ,at Conisborough and Denaby, and the development of road transport service of the district—truly a remarkable record of progress in one short decade. If the same pace is maintained in the next ten years, and that decade is free – as the last has certainly not been—of industrial trouble and trade depression, we ought in 1941 to see Conisborough a thriving borough, completely equipped at all points.