South Yorkshire Times March 3 1945
Reference to Heroic Work at Cadeby and Denaby Fires
“I want to say publicly gentleman, “thank you for a grand job.” That was a tribute paid to mine rescue men of the Wath Joint Rescue Station for their ability, courage and readiness in successfully combating underground fires at Cadeby Main and Denaby Main Colleries during 1944.
Mr Norman Hully (Chairman of the station management committee and agent of Denaby Main Colliery) speaking at the fifth annual dinner in the Miners Welfare Hall, Denaby on Saturday.
Mr B.H.Pickering (production director of the Ministry of Fuel and Power and chairman of the station trustees) who presided, revealed that in future the men will be subject to a more intensive medical examination.
The Chairman said he was happy to be able to say that the station had only two call during the past year, and at Denaby and overactive. He believed these were called “incidents.” “Incidents” they might be, but these were true that my been very serious. Fortunately no lives were lost, although certain men were burned and injured at Cadeby. Arising out of that additional insurance was taken out was payment under the Workmen’s Compensation Act brought in these men combined sum of 3 pounds a week. Unfortunately Bailey, one of the men died later. There was considerable doubt in the minds of the medical men asked the reason of the death, but they are to come to terms, finally, with the insurance company.
“We have arranged for more intensive medical examination to be made in the future,” continued Mr Pickering, “I think that should be done if only and in fairness to you rescue men who take part in these precarious and gallant operations. From now on the examination will be made in June instead of December. To get into that cycle there will be two this year, one taking place now and the other in June.
Mr Pickering extended a welcome to two old friends, Mr Thompson and Mr Bell. He sang the trustees for the way that supported him and he paid tribute to the management committees work under Mr Hulley (Chairman) and Mr G.C. Payne (secretary). They must not forget Mr J. Macaskill (superintendent) and Mr J.W.Poole (assistant superintendent)
“I was unable to be present at either the Cadeby of the Denaby incident,) Mr Pickering stated, “but I understand the work Mr Macaskill put in both these incidents was prodigious.”
“Coming to you men, I have said before, and I shall say again, that you are the salt of the earth as far as a mining profession is concerned. You give up your time, and always and unfailingly, when anything goes wrong, explosions, fires or anything else, you acquit yourself like men, as you have in the past year, on those two occasions.”
Mr Hulley said they had had during the past year, two calls on the station. “I want to say sincerely I was not only amazed but very highly gratified at the way you carried out your jobs at Cadeby and Denaby, in May and November 1944. I know they were both difficult jobs. I felt afterwards that as far as Denaby is concerned it seems at times that I was asking you to do the impossible, but you pulled it off; you pulled that little bit out of the bag which was necessary to make the job a success.
“It was probably easy for me to say, just one more and then we shall be all right, but you were the chaps who are doing it and you did not fail. I feel privileged to say publicly to all members of Wath Rescue Station, thank you very much for a grand job. Nothing I can say express a feeling of myself, Mr Cowlan, Mr Pickering and the trustees. If your work in the future never surpasses that standard – it may surpass it, personally I don’t think it can – if it remains at that high standard, neither the trustee, the management committee or your employers, and I would venture to say, His Majesty Inspector, or anyone, will have need to question your ability, courage and readiness to do your job. That I thank you and I hope that the Wath Rescue Station will maintain this high standard of efficiency it has done for years. I wish you the best of luck.”
Proficiency certificates were awarded: Cadeby Main: H.Bott
Bronze medals (five-year service): Cadeby Main: J.C.Brown, A.E.Hirst, J.B.Smith; Denaby Main: E.Oxer
Silver medal (10 years service) Cadeby Main: G.Lani, J.Humphreys, J.wall
Gold medals (15 years service) Denaby Main: W Rylatt, P.Henson
retiring certificates: Cadeby Main: T.Larney (10 years); A.Hirst (five years)