This page includes information about events happening in and around the village of Halmer End during January 2018 to commemorate the Centenary of the Minnie Pit Disaster which took place in the village on 12th January 1918 when 155 miners and 1 rescuer died.
Events at the Methodist Church during the Centenary Weekend are:
Friday 12th January 2018
The Chapel will be open from 9.30 am until 12.00 noon with Rev'd Helen Hoe present for prayerful remembrance by members of the churches and the public.
At 6.30 pm there will be a Pie and Pea Supper, with external caterers, followed by a dramatic re-presentation of events of the disaster based on accounts by Mrs. Christine Lamb in her book "The Minnie Pit Disaster"; this will be a ticket only event for 80 people with tickets at £10 each available from Ann Moore on 01782 721086 or Raymond Dale on 01782 720292.
Saturday 13th January 2018
There will be an exhibition in the Church Hall by various organisations associated with the coal mining industry from 10.00 am until 2.00 pm. These include:
Audley & District Family History Society
Apedale Heritage Centre
Podmore Conservation Group
Knotty Coach Trust (Foxfield Railway)
There will be exhibits and memorabilia connected with the disaster and the coal mining industry on display.
Admission is free.
At 2.00 pm the Audley & District Family History Society will launch their new book 'Victims of the Minnie Pit Disaster 1918' as a tribute to the miners who lost their lives in the disaster. The book will contain information on every victim and their immediate families, giving dates of birth, marriage and death, along with details of the occupations of the miners in the pit, recovery of bodies and burials. More details about the book can be found on the Audley & District Family History Society web site.
The book launch will be followed by folk music from the Wilcox:Hulse trio who feature the disaster in their repertoire. Admission is free.
Sunday 14th January 2018
There will be a Service of Commemoration at 3.00 pm in Halmer End Methodist Church led by Rev'd John Palmer and Dr. Jill Barber (Vice President of the Methodist Conference in the 2015 – 2016 year). This service will be broadcast live by Radio Stoke. All are welcome.
You can hear this service for the next month on the BBC Radio Stoke website and following the links.
Car parking for this service is available at Riley's Car Park behind the store.
The Minnie Pit Disaster happened during the First World War. The Staffordshire Great War Project, based at Staffordshire Archive Heritage, Shugborough, now has the Minnie Pit Centenary event added to their web page. It is listed under the 'What's on' tab latest events section and you will need to scroll down a few items to find it.
FREE SCREENINGS AT THE FILM THEATRE, College Rd, Stoke-on-Trent ST4 2EF
WEDNESDAYS, 7.45pm. Bar open from 7.00pm. Ticket-free – No booking required. Free parking adjacent to Film Theatre – enter from College Road opposite Queen Anne Street.
Wed 10th January 7.45pm
THE MINNIE PIT DISASTER 1918 – A Special Centenary Commemoration
January 12th 1918 saw the worst mining disaster in North Staffordshire's history – at the Minnie Pit, Halmer End. 155 men and boys died in the explosion, and the death of the leader of the Rescue Team made the final total 156. Archive recordings of personal reminiscences of the explosion, photographs, newspaper reports and films combine with expert insight as a tribute to our coal mining communities.
Other groups involved in the Centenary Commemoration have provided details on Facebook pages. The main source of information about the Centenary Commemoration is included on the Minnie Pit Centennial Commemoration Facebook page.