St John Ambulance Brigade

Bolsover Colliery Company set up a separate department attached to the St John’s Ambulance Brigade. The skilled ambulance men were readily available on each shift throughout the mine. All members were re-examined once a year. Thoresby Colliery had over 60 fully trained members during 1940’s.

This photo shows what we think may be the first photograph of the founder members of the
Thoresby Colliery Division. It is taken in the front garden of one of the Colliery Villas, the
houses that were built for the colliery officials, on Ollerton Road.
1st row: Mr Taggart, Mr Beardsley, Mr Beeson, ? ? Mr Hooley, ? ? Mr Gozzard, Mr Wood, ?
2nd row: Mr Jones, ? Mr Guy, ? ? Mr Evans, Mr Steed, Mr Hollingsworth, ? ? Mr Poslthwaite, ?
?. 3rd row: Mr Barber, ? Mr Revil, ? Mr Russon, Mr Tagg, ? Mr Fell, Mr Bowler, Mr Middleton,
Mr Cudworth, ? Front row: Mr Snuggs, ? ? Mr Battison, Mr Redfern, Mr Meridith, ? Mr Brown,
Mr Freeman, ? ?

The Bolsover Colliery Company set up a separate department to deal with safety measures, and each colliery maintained a uniformed division attached to the St John Ambulance Brigade. The skilled ambulance men were readily available on each shift throughout the mine.

The photo shows Mr Aisha Gozzard, Mr George Hargreaves, and Mr Harold Battison taking part in an ambulance competition during the 1950’s.

Mr Battison receiving his certificate.

Rhyl Camp

For many years the Company provided for employees sons and daughters who were members of the Boys and Girls Brigades and for the six Ambulance Divisions who were also attached to collieries to spend a week each year in a camp at the seaside.

The Company purchased a site at Rhyl, North Wales, and constructed a permanent camp which opened in the summer of 1936.

The site was a short distance from the sea front and the principal shops and Amusement Park.

Members 1940.

The boys section of the St John’s Ambulance Brigade –  It was taken in the early 1950’s.

L to R, Back row:  Dick Duffin, Eric Clay, Alan Hodgkinson, Barry Green, John Vessey, George Maxfield, Robert Postlethwaite, Herbert Brown, Noel Moseley, Brian Wathall.

Centre row: Derek Green, Ray Mellors, John Guy, Colin Rose, Mr Frank Rose, Mr Stewart Worrell, Pat Moody, John Wiltshire, John Coulson,

Front row: Richard Kirkland, Barry Wardle, Brian Hall, Keith Woodland, Frank Crossland, David Gascoine.

Senior Cadets – 1950

Back row. ? ?  ?  Mrs G. Hill,    Mrs N, Cannon.

Front row. Mary Wilson, Margaret Guy, Margaret Rose.

 Janice Gozzard, Christine Brown, Jackie Street, Elaine Clark

      Marion Else, Joan Gozzard, Margaret Rose.

Ambulance Cadets Party 1953

Dick Duffin, Robert Postlethwaite, ? John Wiltshire,Peter Callaghan, Terry Scothern, Derek Green, David Gascoine, Peter Green, Pat Moody, Alan Higgs, Colin Wilton, ? Jackson. Noel Moseley

                                    Some of the boys recognized in the photograph.                                                  Ken Mollatt, Stewart Higginbottom, Robin Flear, Brian Wiltshire, Terry Hodgson, Brett Baines, Dale Furniss, John Vessey, Richard Kirkland, John Guy, Keith Woodland.                                                             

                Ambulance Dinner in the Dukeries Hotel 1960

 Mr & Mrs Thorneycroft. Graham Thorpe, Colin Rose, ? Margaret Rose, Janet Pell, Pauline Clark, Stewart Clark, John Mellings .

Thoresby Nursing Cadets May 1960

The photo was taken in May, 1960, when the cadets spent time at the camp in Rhyl.

Back row: Brenda Jackson, June Fletcher, Glenys Hawkins, Rosemary Cooper, Sansia Sherratt, Joy Farrol, Ann Savage, Valerie Moss, Susan Illet, Susan Marriott, Susan Milner, Susan Baines.

Middle row: Jennifer Towe, Denise Higginbotham, Marlene Dean, Cynthia Kent, Elaine Clark, Mrs Bartle, Mrs Bentley, Janet Pell, Joan Hallam, Margaret Bell, Maureen Watson, Judy Barker, Janet Rayner.

Front row: Donna Mellors, Betty Carver, Annette Jones, Veronica Parker, Mavis Else, Vanessa Moore, Ann Ward, Jane Furniss, Hilda Jacobs, Paula Hallam, Glenys Weekes, Felicity Hall, Lilian Jacobs.

Princess Margaret – 1965

Royal visitor to Derbyshire on Sunday was Princess Margaret. the Commander in Chief of the St. John Ambulance and Nursing cadets, who flew in and out from the East Midlands Airport at Castle Donnington. The Princess was to have inspected many cadets at Bemrose School, Derby. The event was planned for the outdoors but because of the rain, the inspection was switched to classrooms. She met members of the Order of St. John Association from Britain and overseas and led the cadets in their promises and enrolment ceremony, which was conducted by the Bishop of Derby, the Rt. Rev. Geoffrey Allen. The Duke arrived at the airport in a Hawker Siddeley Andover of the Queens Flight and was met by the Lord Lieutenant of Leicestershire. Col. R. St. G. Martin. After presentations of members of the consortium which operates the airport the Duke unveiled a plaque at the entrance to the main concourse and was taken on a tour of the airport buildings. His visit last only 30 minutes.

LINED THE ROAD – Ambulance and nursing cadets from Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire were among those enrolled and among those who received Grand Prior’s badges. Earlier the Princess had been welcomed into the county by the Lord Lieutenant.                                                                     Long Eaton Advertiser 16 July 1965

Elizabeth Wright, of Edwinstowe Ambulance Cadets had been chosen to represent her Brigade. An honour, well deserved. Although Elizabeth didn’t follow a nursing career, her training must have stood her in good stead because she had been a First Aider at work, and has been a First Responder with the Yorkshire Ambulance Service for the past 11 years.

County Competition Winners  

                                 Nursing Cadets taking part in the Miners Gala Mansfield       

St John ambulance cadets circa 1972

Area St John’s Ambulance review at Edwinstowe next to King Edwin School. The School Canteen is visible in the picture April 1981.

 St John Reunion – 2006

St John Reunion – 2006

Members and former members of the Thoresby Colliery St John Ambulance Division are pictured at a reunion to celebrate 75 years of first aid in Edwinstowe. The formation of a division of St John was encouraged by the Bolsover Colliery Company in each of its colliery villages. The Thoresby Colliery Division met weekly in the Welfare Hall and members were instructed in first aid by experienced officers and local doctors. They were thus prepared to administer emergency treatment at the colliery pending the arrival of a doctor. Uniformed members were also present at village functions, including attendance at the Saturday night dances, and were prominent on the annual pit-trip trains to and from Skegness. There was an annual camp, under canvas, in the grounds of Scarborough

Castle. In 1939 a permanent site at Rhyl, North Wales was purchased.