Orders, Decorations and Medals (28 June 2000)

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Date of Auction: 28th June 2000

Sold for £360

Estimate: £200 - £250

Mine Rescue Medal, bronze, obv. bust of King George V in naval uniform, rev. wreath of laurels inscribed within ‘South Kirby, Featherstone & Hemsworth Collieries Ltd., Awarded for Bravery in the South Kirby Mine, February 1922’, named on the edge (William Jenkinson) with ring suspension, in its Fattorini & Sons Ltd presentation case, extremely fine and rare £200-250


Awarded by South Kirby, Featherstone & Hemsworth Collieries Ltd., for bravery at a rescue on 11 February, 1922, at the South Kirby Mine, near Barnsley, Yorkshire. Two of the miners were awarded the Edward Medal in Bronze, London Gazette 27 June 1922: ‘A workman named Creighton, employed in a seam of the South Kirby Colliery, Yorkshire, was completely buried by a fall of roof on 11th February 1922. Several miners who were at work near the spot, came to the rescue, among them Humphries and Smith. The imprisoned man’s head and shoulders were soon freed, but owing to the pressure of debris on the lower part of his body and legs, it was impossible to pull him clear, while, so fast as earth was removed, more slipped down in its place. The rescue party placed sleepers across the body of the imprisoned man, thus preventing him being completely engulfed by the debris, and eventually a passage was made under the sleepers over Creighton’s body, which was unhurt with the exception of one foot which was firmly pinned down by a large stone. The foot was eventually released and the man freed after eight and a half hours work. All the men who took part in the rescue were exposed to great risk for a prolonged period, and behaved with great gallantry and devotion to duty, but Humphries and Smith were unanimously selected by their comrades as having specially distinguished themselves. (Bronze Medal to each man).’