Denaby’s Christmas

January 1903

Mexborough and Swinton Times, January 2.

Denaby┬┤s Christmas.

The Christmas holidays were spent in a quiet manner at Denaby and Cadeby, in contrast to the corresponding period of former years. The miners, generally speaking, spent a fairly good time, and enjoyed themselves as well as circumstances would permit, thanks to the double strike pay, with the 6 shillings per man “nipsey” money, which the men received last week.

The respite of the Colliery Company in the matter of ejectment has now lapsed, and Denaby may, at almost any moment, be thrown into a state of topsy turveydom, and if this happens where are the families to shelter from the cruel blasts of winter?

During the week people have almost tumbled over each other in their search for houses, but with little success, and it is feared that many will have to take what little advantage the crude shelter of canvas tents offer. People say they stood so much in the memorable 1885 strike, but they must recollect that the men had not wintry weather to contend with then. Should there hand of Providence intervene much trouble in the way of disease and health may result.

The underground fire at the Denaby pit head has not yet been mastered, but gradual progress is being made. A number of men are still working to subdue it, but the demonstrations of the women have ceased, thanks to some pretty straightforward talk by the men to them, and a large number of police that have been drifted into the players have had a comparatively easy time of it.

There are also a number of men still working at the Cadeby pit, and although the women eye them curiously, the men stand in groups as they leave the pit and will not be seen to recognise them.

One aged and infirm miner, it is said, found lodgings for one or two men will come from Sheffield to work at the Denaby pit, and this has provoked the wrath of the men on whom, in times of peace, he depends for his livelihood. The offended party in this case is said to be a “knocker up.” And it would appear that is likely to lose some of his custom where work is resumed.

It was stated on Monday that a lady well known in social circles sent 100 tons of coal for distribution among the poorer families of miners, but we cannot vouch for the authenticity of the statement.

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