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Miners Memorial

A Grade II Listed Building in Ashington, Northumberland

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Coordinates

Latitude: 55.1891 / 55°11'20"N

Longitude: -1.5482 / 1°32'53"W

OS Eastings: 428863

OS Northings: 588402

OS Grid: NZ288884

Mapcode National: GBR K8MF.MP

Mapcode Global: WHC2M.6T0V

Entry Name: Miners Memorial

Listing Date: 18 December 1986

Last Amended: 3 June 2010

Grade: II

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1041386

English Heritage Legacy ID: 235898

Location: Ashington, Northumberland, NE63

County: Northumberland

Civil Parish: Ashington

Built-Up Area: Ashington (Northumberland)

Traditional County: Northumberland

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Northumberland

Church of England Parish: Woodhorn with Newbiggin

Church of England Diocese: Newcastle

Find accommodation in
Newbiggin-by-the-Sea

Listing Text

ASHINGTON

1761/2/27
18-DEC-86

WOODHORN COLLIERY
ASHINGTON
MINERS MEMORIAL

(Formerly listed as:
SIXTH AVENUE
ASHINGTON
MINERS MEMORIAL IN HIRST PARK)

GV
II

Memorial, 1923, by W H Knowles and John Reid. Re-erected in 1991 at Woodhorn Colliery Museum.

MATERIALS: Bronze figure on a white granite plinth and pedestal with low relief bronze panels.

PLAN: Square

A stepped base with a low pyramid-capped pier at each corner carries a tall tapering granite pedestal with a moulded base. A moulded string is arched over drinking fountains on the north and south sides, a plaque on the east side bearing a low-relief colliery scene and a plaque on the west side carrying the inscription:

ERECTED BY/ THE MINERS AND/DEPUTIES TRADE-/UNION BRANCHES IN THE ASHINGTON GROUP/OF COLLIERIES (ASSISSTED/BY DONATIONS FROM THE/ASHINGTON AND CO. LTD., THE NORTHUMBERLAND/MINERS ASSOCCIATION, THE NORTHUMBERLAND/DEPUTIES ASSOCCIATIONS AND FRIENDS)/IN MEMORY OF THEIR FELLOW WORKMEN WHO LOST THEIR LIVES IN THE WOODHORN COLLIERY EXPLOSION ON SUNDAY, AUG. 13 1916
Followed by the names of three stonemen, two putters and eight deputies.

A laurel wreath carved in relief is set immediately below a moulded cap which carries a life-size sculpture of a mining deputy holding up a safety lamp.

HISTORY: This colliery disaster occurred on Sunday 13 August 1916 in the Main Seam at Woodhorn Colliery, when a repairing shift was in the mine for the purpose of setting steel girders as roof supports. As the work was of a special nature the shift was composed of eight deputies and five other persons sent in to assist them. The explosion which occurred was caused by the presence of inflammable gas within the seam. Eleven men were killed outright and two others never regained consciousness.

The memorial was designed by William Henry Knowles (1857-1943) and sculpted by John Reid (born c. 1890). Knowles was a renowned Newcastle architect who has a number of Grade II listed buildings to his name, notably several buildings which are now part of the University of Newcastle including the King Edward VII School of Art (1911) and the School of Bacteriology (1922). He was also a respected archaeologist and authority on Hadrian's Wall who directed and reported on the excavations at Corstopitum between 1907 and 1914. Reid was Master of Sculpture at Armstrong College, Newcastle and his Royal Tank Regiment war memorial, Newcastle upon Tyne is listed at Grade II.

SOURCES:
http://www.dmm.org.uk/names/n1916-01.htm
Paul Usherwood, Jeremy Beach, Catherine Morris Public Sculpture of North-East England (2000)

REASON FOR DESIGNATION: The Miners Memorial at Woodhorn Colliery is designated at Grade II for the following principal reasons:
* It is a well executed monument in bronze and white granite in the style of a war memorial but to a civilian accident
* It was designed by the renowned architect W H Knowles, and incorporates a bronze statue by the sculptor John Reid
* The work commemorates a colliery disaster during The Great War, whose impact on the community was all the greater given the absence of many men serving in France at the time
* The pose of its subject, a pit deputy searching for gas with the aid of a safety lamp, is unusual and conveys strongly the message of 'safety first'.

This text is from the original listing, and may not necessarily reflect the current setting of the building.

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