South Yorkshire Times, November 2.
Denaby men stick by “Go Slow” plan.
Despite closure rumours circulating at Denaby Main Colliery this week, the men are determined to stay their ground in their four weeks old dispute with the management over contract payments, N.U.M.branch officials told the “South Yorkshire Times” yesterday.
Trouble at the pit started when the management claimed that a packing job in the collery´s Barnsley Bed was below standard, and refused to make contract payments for it. As a result the men started a “goal-slow” campaign.
After a meeting between NUM and NCB officials on Friday, a mass meeting of the men was called at the weekend, when it was decided by a majority vote to carry on with the “goal – slow,” even after appeals for a return to normal work were made by NUM area officials.
“The difference which separates us and the management is just over seven pounds – the payment for the job,” said one official.
Branch secretary, Mr Tom Ryan said, “we are prepared to return to work. If this payment is made – and it certainly should have been.”
“Everybody admits that the work was done but because the face in question was out of line some of the packing was damaged by the increased pressure,” he continued.
“There is no question of shoddy workmanship.”
The refusal to pay was penalising not only the men directly concerned, but also those working in the seam the day after, who also came under the job contract, he added.
Another official referred to the dispute as a “red herring” led by the management to draw attention away from other trouble spots at the pit, in particular the minus claim, following a fall in the Barnsley seam that ring girder should have been set. In one section.
Mr Riding confirmed that rumours that the pit was to be clause or taken over by officials above area level were current, but he commented, “regardless of these, the men are sticking by their decision to go slow.”
Mr Ryan emphasised that the rumours are not been officially confirmed. He added: “there are no troublemakers in the Barnsley seam, which is normally productive. In fact it is the best seam at Denaby Main.”
He concluded: “if nothing is resolved by next weekend, the branch are prepared to make a full disclosure of all the trouble. There has been at the colliery.”
Yesterday afternoon light contract workers returning from the morning shift alleged that although they were not involved in the dispute, their bonus for working a number of complete shifts, had been withheld because they had accepted a branch resolution to “go slow”.