Mine and Men - Company, Management and Men at Lofthouse Colliery 1872-1921, by John Goodchild
Published by Wakefield Historical Publications in 1989, 38 pages. A5 size booklet (N6558X1)
This booklet provides a short account of Lofthouse Colliery, which was located a few miles north of Wakefield in West Yorkshire.
From the introduction: When Lofthouse Colliery closed in July 1981, it had had a productive life spanning only some 103 years, but its story is nevertheless a peculiarly interesting and significant one. Its importance depends upon two facts: the first that Lofthouse was the only English colliery established on a co-operative basis which ultimately succeeded financially, and the second that the printed reports - or a large proportion of the reports - of the company and its Board survive, and that the colliery's labour relations are illustrated by the rare survival of a long run of union branch records from 1879. While the Lofthouse company's own minute and account books seem not to have survived, their detailed printed reports and accounts have proved invaluable in the study of the colliery's history, and a long run of the Lofthouse Colliery Lodge minutes is almost continuous from 1879 until 1922 (with gaps in the years 1891-93 and 1901-05). These Lodge records are illustrated by a number of loose papers and copy letter books found with them, and something of the technological development of the colliery is told in the Colliery Guardian's account of the company's concerns, published in 1895. Use has been made of a variety of further source materials, including the records of the regional coalmasters' association, the files of the local newspapers - and particularly of the Wakefield Express - and maps and plans, local government records, Mines Inspectors' reports, other printed and manuscript materials, and physical evidence has been investigated too.
This essay attempts to illustrate the story of Lofthouse Colliery up to the early 1920s, beyond which the surviving principal sources do not extend; there appear indeed to be very few subsequent surviving records prior to Nationalisation. The author would indeed be most interested to hear of any additional papers of any period which survive in relation to Lofthouse Colliery.
The condition of the booklet is generally very good. The cover is clean and tidy, the staple spine is intact and all pages are clean, intact, unblemished and tightly bound.