Summertime Strike – Denaby Haulage Hands Want Earlier Start and Finish

April 1956

South Yorkshire Times April 28, 1956

Summertime Strike
Denaby Haulage Hands Want Earlier Start and Finish

A strike of 20 young haulage hands on Monday afternoon developed into a major strike in two of the three seams at Denaby Main Colliery on Tuesday afternoon.

On Monday 20 lads between the ages of 16 and 22 years came out demanding an early start on the afternoon shift. It was the first working day of summertime and they claimed that they wanted to enjoy the long evenings.

On Tuesday afternoon about 100 of the lads from the Barnsley and Parkgate seams were on strike because of this move.

18 years old Barry Davis, of Tickhill Street, Denaby Main, told reporters, “It’s all eating, sleeping and working on this shift: we get no pleasure time at all. I can never manage to take out my girl during the week. I’m fed up with the times of this shift and so is my girlfriend.”

The lads want the starting time of the shift bringing forward from 1:30 PM to 12:30 p.m. so that they can get off half an hour earlier.

Peter Coley (19), of Melton view, Denaby, is a keen dancer, “but I can only go to weekend answers,” he said. “I also like a nice walk out into the country now that the light nights have come, but it is not possible on the shift. I never get home until about 10 p.m. and that is too late to start an evening out. We shall stick this out until we get the time change.

Brian Cartwright (15), of Halifax Avenue, Conanby, is a keen swimmer, but can only go to the baths at weekends. “I enjoy swimming and would like to go in for competitions, but I cannot get in enough practice.”

The 100 lads were led to see the manager with their complaint by 25-year-old Joe Turton, of Leeds Terrace, Denaby. “I like a quiet drink after work but there is no time for that on this shift,” he said.

Resumption of Work

A mass meeting of 100 haulage lads was held at Denaby and Cadeby Miners Welfare Hall on Wednesday evening.

Although N.U.M. Secretary, County Councillor George Hanson and delegate Mr Abe Collins were instructed to “make no statements whatsoever to the press” it was learned that the lads had agreed to resume work and yesterday (Thursday) afternoon there was a full resumption of working both seams concerned, the Parkgate and Barnsley seams, Mr Hanson reported.

Coal production had not been held up by the strikers as the pit has been working on a skeleton staff of other men who have been moved to the haulage work.