Killamarsh People

This section is for us to include information about Killamarsh people (past and present) to let us know what you have been doing over the years.

If you would like to be included you can either email your information to or send it to The Secretary, Killamarsh Heritage Society, 15 Manor Road, Killamarsh, Sheffield, S21 1BU and we will feature your details.  If would be good if you can include a photograph (perhaps then and now).

This could include an achievement in your career.  Perhaps you would like us to feature someone who has gained their degree or some other qualification.  Perhaps you have worked somewhere unusual or done something impressive for charity.  Or perhaps you have an unusual hobby or interest.  Let us know, it would be great to hear from you.

We hope you find this interesting.



I was born and brought up in Killamarsh and I have been reading the accounts submitted by others on their life in Killamarsh and now attempt to give mine.

Alan Godhard_Baby



Little digression and explanation, recently it has been proved that my partners grandfather was not lost at sea in WW1 but was in the grave of the unknown marine in Padstow, Cornwall, the grave was rededicated to him in August 2015, because of this we have been getting very interested in family history, you now find that your parents would most likely have had the answers to many of our questions but they are no longer here to ask, this makes you realise what a lot is lost to future generations if we do not pass on our knowledge so that is why I have decided to write down what I remember.  W MK Whitmore Isabel's GFGMM

Alan Godhard

The problem is that the more I remember the older it makes me feel, I am only seventy-one, some of the things only seem like yesterday were has all the years gone?.

A little about my family

Tom Jenkins (1884-1951), It was always implied that he was Great Granddad, I can just remember Tom, the big man with the pipe and the walking stick who lived with my grandmother at 258 Sheffield Road.  I always think of him as being tall but there again I was only small.  I believe he was a hewer at Norwood Colliery, I was told he worked laid down in narrow seams.  He spent his retirement days walking, he walked for miles, he had relatives in the Retford area, he would be given bus fare to visit them but he would set of early and walk there and back, again given more bus fare by the relatives, returning early enough to use the bus fare up at the Midland Hotel.  In his early life he played football for what was called Churchtown which is in the Kirkcroft Lane area, there used to be a Club on Kirkcroft Lane. I think Tom actually originates from the Harthill area and there may be a boatman connection.  The name originally could have been Jenkinson.  Also in Photo Tom Jenkins brother George Jenkins and his wife’s brother Fred Foster.

Churchtown Football team

jane E Foster GGM

Elizabeth Jane Foster was my Great Grandmother, the family lived in Upperthorpe.  I believe she was the daughter of Ann Lea, at the moment I have not found any history for Ann.  As I said her name seems to be Lea, there could be a  connection to Leah which is a Killamarsh family name.  Ann Harris GGGM



Nellie Foster GM


Nellie Foster (1894-1958), My grandmother was one the two illegitimate children of Elizabeth Jane Foster of Upperthorpe, Killamarsh. Elizabeth married Tom Jenkins and had four more children, Robert, Mary Ann, Hilda and Emma.  I remember visiting one at Kiveton Park and I believe one of them lived in Adelaide, Australia.  I believe it is the Nellie Foster who raised the alarm at the terrible skating accident involving the death of six young people which occurred on the Chesterfield Canal at Churchtown, Killamarsh on 28th November 1915.  I remember grandma she had one leg shorter than the other and had special shoes with a heel on one about two inches higher than the other, she was hard of hearing and had a hearing aid which consisted of a battery box on a belt, a microphone in the middle of her chest and earphones on her head, I must have inherited her hearing problem, but now if I drop a tiny hearing aid they are so small my old eyes have difficulty seeing them.  Grandma was in service and when she washed she would always ensure that the largest items on the line would be nearest the house, if any were dry enough to iron she would take them in and then move all the washing up the line so there were no spaces, she folded sheets and the bashed them on the table after each fold, doubtful if anyone can get them as flat with an iron.

Horace H Snowling GF

Nellie married Herbert Horace Snowling (1892-1930), a soldier in the Royal Artillery; in 1916, he was injured in WW1 and I believe he could not use his hands normally after that, I suspect that the marriage took place after his medical discharge as this has a bearing on a future event.  I am still researching his past, I have some of my grandmothers stamp collection and many are postmarked; Nelson which is in Lancashire, there is a Herbert Horace Snowling who was in the Lancashire Regiment; who was discharged with ignominy.  When WW1 broke out Herbert Horace Snowling is a Soldier in the Royal Artillery (would they take him back because of the war, is there any connection, did he tell them?).  Herbert and Nellie had one child May, he died when Mum was only 13.

Nellie had a fish and chip shop on Bunkers Hill, she put my Mother through hairdressing school and was the registered occupant of a shop, possibly next to Mrs Godber’s sweet shop on Sheffield Road which was where my mother did hair dressing.  I do not know when Grandma moved to Sheffield Road but that was the only place that she lived that I remember.  I know she remarried in 1942 to George W Robinson, when I was young she lived at Killamarsh but she would pack her little suitcase and off she went at the weekend to Doncaster where George ran the Black Bull Public House, what she did there; I do not know but I remember her skill with playing cards, she shuffled them like a professional gambler. We all have distant memories we cannot explain, Grandma had a connection with the fair, when the fair came to Killamarsh she would always go, there was definitely an underlying reason, it could have been a family connection.

May Snowling

May Snowling (1917-1989) My mother was wonderful, all Mothers are. She married my father Stanley Godhard (1914-1992) of Mosborough by special licence; at the outbreak of WW2; father volunteered to serve in the RAF; they married before he went because Herbert her father only had a single pension as he married Nellie after his discharge. Before he went they made up a code which was based on the names of picture houses and dance halls so that he could get round censorship and tell her where he was stationed.  When I was young we lived at 12 Bridge Street, at the back of Alice O’Connell’s haberdashery shop, we had the two upstairs Stanley Godhardbedrooms, a living room and the off shot kitchen with a coal fired clothes washer in the corner. We were posh; in our outside loo, on a nail behind the door we had paper from the Women’s Weekly, not newspaper. The bath hung on the wall outside, I have a grave recollection that I was grabbed out of this bath, because someone had inadvertently thrown a ration book into the fire and I went out as the ration book went in to douse the flame. Grandma had a proper bath in her house so some nights we went there, after we would be put into our pyjamas, the bottom would be taken out of my sisters’s Silver Cross Pram and I was put in the bottom and she was on top for our journey back to Bridge Street. Father kept chickens at the top of the yard. Jim Baines the butcher had chickens, if the cocks escaped they would fight in the yard, Mr Baines’ cocks always suffered badly against dad’s, his second or third replacement was a special fighting cock, that didn’t last long either, I thinks dad’s finished up in the cooker. In 16 Bridge Street lived Mr Bates, who rode a tricycle, I don’t think the front room on that property was a shop when we lived there.

Tom Jenkins had the small bedroom at Sheffield Road, he died in 1951 so I guess it may have been some time after that when we moved in with Grandma. My dad bought a 9″ single channel black and white TV, during Queen Elizabeth’s coronation my mother spent all her time making sandwiches and tea for the hoards of people packed into our living room peering at the little screen. Grandma and Father did the football pools each week and they won, it was over a thousand pounds, I suppose if I was still doing my last proper job I would be paid that for a week’s work but then it was a fortune, they bought the house and a car, that didn’t go down too well with the local Doctors.

Armstrong Sissley Whitley

Doctor Lipp had a Jaguar and Doctor Murray had a Rover, we had an Armstrong Siddley Whitley, I remember I had the job of keeping it clean and polishing the acres of black.  Dad worked for Glovers at the Flower Mill and also at the ATCO at Eckington.  Eventually we moved to Mosborough when I was about 18.

Glovers Flower mill C1955

My father drove for Glovers and in his early years one of his jobs was to fire up the steam lorries.  I can remember seeing the railway goods trucks on the siding by the mill.  Later he worked for the Cooperative Insurance in Chesterfield.  He had an accident when he was working in Cutt’s saw mill up Netherthorpe Lane and eventually had to retire early because of it.

A little about me

I was born in Killamarsh 18th August 1944.

I went to the infant school where we used slates and chalk; counted using cowry shells; made models with multicoloured plasticine.

At junior school we were taught by Mr Lowe, Mr Fisher, Mrs Fisher and Eric Large, Eric lived next door to my parents at Mosborough. I am told he  died about 2010.

My father drove around the country and was sometimes in the right place at the right time and one of his acquisitions was a pedal car, he restored it, it was built like a tank and me and my friends would all sit on it and career down Bridge Street.

Killamarsh Secondary Modern School (1955-1959)  Mr Seston was headmaster who retired, his replacement was Mr Reid.  Mr Lound was the Sports Master.  We had to do cross country running, we had to run down Norwood past the Angel and along the canal, it was a teachers dream there were no short cuts so he didn’t have to come with us just make sure, when we left the school we went left and came back from the right. The javelins we used were bamboo with steel points.  High jump and pole vault landing was into soft sand, no foam cushions so the idea was to land on your feet, either Weston roll or Scissors, no Fosbury flop. Some days we played tennis on the courts at the Nether Green. We had gardening with Mr Danks, we had bee hives and I think after I left the school they had pigs.  Bob Martin, the geography teacher, taught us how to make puppets and put on shows.

School trip

A party of us from the school went to Switzerland with Ray Bolsover (Music) and Winnie Davis (RE) in about 1957.

Peter ?, Geoffrey Beech, Charlie ?, Norman Hallam, Roger Nettleship,

Keith Sharp, Barry Richards

? ?, W Davis, Valerie Newton, Stuart Bright, Alan Godhard, ? ?

Paula ?, ? ?, Linda Rotherham, ? Rotherham, ? ?, Rita Woodhead

I went to Whitehall Outward Activity Centre, I had a sniffle, they decided it was flu and as there was going to be a visit to the centre by the Duke of Edinburgh, they sent me home in an ambulance. I was only occasionally in Little Smick’s class, the main thing you learnt was catching chalk and black board rubbers.  If the rain had turned the sports field into bog we played hockey instead of football, if it was a paddy field we had modern dancing.  It did not appeal then but now it’s different and I dance regularly.  As a teenager I danced in the school hall to the Savanna Band, the old ladies loved to teach you the dances, the old ladies are still teaching me the dances. Now unfortunately I imagine school boys will not see this warning until too late; that is when eventually they have got interested in local history – “Boys should never play netball against the girls without wearing body armour”.  Other teachers names were Mrs Briggs, Mr and Mrs Riley (they married whilst I was at the school, I cannot remember her previous name), Mr Hurst, Big Smick, Mrs (Yendall) Arblaster, June Farrer, Mr Thornton, Mr Rawson.

I was a cadet with the St John’s Ambulance Brigade, which met in a wooden hut on the Holbrook Colliery site and went on many events at the Miners Camp at Skeggy.

After leaving school I was allowed to do a pre-apprenticeship year at Clowne Tech and got an apprenticeship to be an electrician with the Yorkshire Electricity Board in Sheffield.  In the weeks between leaving Tech and the start at the YEB I worked in the Glover Provender Mill at Halfway, that was an experience.  Flapping leather belts driving the machines, repairing floors when sack barrows broke through the old floorboards, feeding the cats, shovelling up their gifts.  I took my HNC at Sheffield, I have had a varied career, YEB, Hotpoint, Sheepbridge, Coop insurance (my area was Ted Jowitt’s old round in Killamarsh and Wales bar), Engineer at Summerfield Hospital in Birmingham, Brown Bailey Steels, Hall and Pickles, MTE in Rayleigh, Bassetlaw Hospital, MALA Consultancy and Design.

In 1962 my family moved to my father’s home village of Mosborough, I did keep in touch with friends, I had transport so this was easy.  I learnt to drive early so I was in demand to ride shot gun with others, you could in those days; now the law has changed.  I know my friend’s brand new van cost him £340 in the days when heaters were an optional extra.  Eventually I got married and lived in Eckington, Birmingham, Sheffield and Worksop before moving to Clowne where I now reside. Divorced once, widowed once, now live with Isabel who I mention in the first paragraph. We like SKIing:- Spending the Kids Inheritance.

Sheffield Road

I remember many of the occupants of the south side of the road, Teshs, Doxeys, Sharps, Goodlads, Hewitts, Greens, Humphreys, Parrs who are mentioned by others in the Killamarsh Heritage site. I had a second hand half size bike and can remember how my friends had learned the technique of riding their fathers’ bike by peddling stood up with one leg under the cross bar.  Maurice Draper used to cut my hair in what is now the tattoo parlour.  Further along just before the LD&ECR embankment was Mrs Cunningham’s shop and Scrappy Walkers Yard.

The street lighting was gas and each day a man with a bike would come each morning and night to turn the lights on and off, eventually clocks were fitted. Sometime looking back makes me feel ancient, like when you go in a museum and they have toys that your children had, electronic calculators and early mobile phones, we all know the test but I have now got grandchildren older than the bobbies.

On the north side of Sheffield Road near the LD&ECR railway was a lane which lead to the Gas works where I spent time with my friend; Harry Hill.

Gas works

In the row of stone cottages a Ward family lived, then there was Mrs Coleman’s sweet shop, I seem to remember the sticky fly papers that hung from the ceiling.

The Juniors Club was a wooden hut in those days, we played snooker and billiards, there was a Bowling Green behind a high wall to the east where the car park is now, behind the stone cottages were lawn tennis courts, on Saturdays I used to score for the cricket matches. The cricket field occasionally used to flood, opposite the wickets were large wooden white screens built onto pit bogies so that the batsmen could see the balls.

Next to the Junior Club was a lane which could be followed down to the River Rother.  I have often wondered how my friend MW explained how he had left a wellington boot in the mud by the river when he arrived home with one boot.  Off the lane was Hagen’s House which stood in the land behind our house, they had a stable, I can remember mother and father, they had two sons, Sam who was single; I seem to think he could not read and write, he had a horse and trap and other horse drawn vehicles, he did local deliveries for Glovers Flour Mill.  Michael who I believe he married a girl from of the White City as it was called.

266 Sheffield Road lived Mr Owen and his wife.  He was the caretaker at the Secondary Modern School but chose not to live at the school.  In the garden there was a brick structure with a concrete roof which I believe was a WW2 air raid shelter.

264 Sheffield Road lived the Purdey’s.  I remember Peter who was a couple of years younger than me; he had a younger brother.

262 Sheffield Road lived the Hopkinson Family, he managed the Coop grocery shop at the bottom of Bridge Street; I seem to remember a son and daughter but they were older than me.

260 Sheffield Road lived the Charlie Goodyear’s family; children David and Christine who married Stuart Drakett.  I believe the Goodyear’s eventually moved into 266.

258 We lived at 258 Grandma, Mum, Dad , sister Valerie and me. Grandma died when I was 13. The house had the name “Denmead”, the pair of semis had the name “Kerridge Villas”.  I do not know the origin of either of these names. I was told that a WW2 doodle-bug came down in the meadows and the roof of the house had some superficial damage.

Audrey Ken's wedding

256 Sheffield Road lived the Hills; Harry the manager of the gas works, Dorothy his wife, daughter; Audrey and mother Mrs Liversidge.  Audrey was a police woman; she married Ken Harpham who I believe worked at the Coop grocery shop at the bottom of Bridge Street.  They then worked for Tennant’s who had the grocery shop which is now the vets.  Tennants was run by two brothers and when the brother who managed the grocery side of the business was killed in an air crash the shops were sold and Ken and Audrey bought it, they later moved to a shop in Sutton in Ashfield, eventually retiring and living in Rainworth, Ken has since passed away, Audrey is very sprightly and looks after herself.  Their Children Ian and Judith are now reaching retirement age, time disappears so quickly. Dorothy missed her telegram from the queen by about three months she was always known as Sill, as I couldn’t say Mrs Hill and Sill stuck for ever. That’s me with the lucky horse shoe at Audrey’s wedding.  I remember them fondly as they were active in my bringing up; my father was abroad in the RAF when I was young and Harry took me under his wing which was very nice, but when dad returned it created difficulties, can’t really explain or completely remember but know it must of had an effect.

254 Hopkinson, Frances who managed the Coop shop at Mosborough

252 Milner’s, possibly one son, younger than me.

250 Mallender’s Family, John and David who married Wendy Glover. Father had a carbide lamp on his bike.

248 Patterson’s, Billie who, worked for Parsons

246 Cahill’s Family, children Marie and Patrick, I believe they moved to America

Mrs O’Connell’s sister called Mrs Curzon lived further along, she made a cure all ointment.

Someone called Varley lived in the big house.

There was a lane which led down to the tip, another play area, dumps of material for the construction of dens. I remember lots of round cardboard tubes with lids, they were about 6″diameter.  I wonder if they were shell cases.

Next was Fords Garage, behind the garage were dozens of WW2 army vehicles, there was no fences so it made a fantastic playground. The garage was owned by Allen and Arnold Ford, they both had a daughter Marilyn and Valerie, eventually the girls married motor engineers and the garage stayed in the family till late last century.

Next was the long row, I have never understood why they knocked down one long row and replaced it with another one.

Where the houses are next to the Nether Green Club were hard surface tennis courts.

At the end of Barbers Lane stood a snow plough, many farmers used their horses or tractors to clear the roads. We used to sledge down the empty fields where the White City is now, also the red brick path from the Junior School to the bottom of Church Lane; and through the narrow path between the houses and for the very brave down Long Lane.  In the summer we use trolleys which were home made from old prams.  Mine had the old wheels off my pedal car on the front and large pram wheels on the back, the quickest was one which had six wheels the rear had a chassis from a huge pram.
Other things that I remember about Killamarsh

The Fire Station used to be at the side of the Midland Hotel and the retained firemen were called to duty by a WW2 siren on a large post. When the siren went the firemen would come racing past on their bikes followed by children who wanted to watch.  the fire engine had no roof and a ladder with huge wheels.  In the summer it was very often the railway banks which were on fire, ignited by the ashes from steam engines these were extinguished with brooms.  Sometimes we were co-opted to put out the fires.  I recall that there was an incident involving the Fire Appliance and Doctor Lipp’s horses coming together on Bridge Street.

We could hear the trains from where we lived, because of the incline there were often two engines pulling a train up the slope on the LD&ECR line, occasionally it would be headed by a Beyer-Garret 2-6-0 0-6-2.  We could see the trains which used the line through Bedgrave, on a damp day you could hear the rattle as they went over a little Beyer Garrettbridge.  I think this is the way the excursion trains used on their way from Killamarsh to Cleethorpes.  The excursion trains had to stop four times at Killamarsh Station as the platform was only a quarter the length of the train.

I never did take up train spotting but sometimes went with my friends, the three lines kept us busy.   When neighbour Harry Hill went on his annual holiday to Eastbourne the boys would see him off, that was in the days when he could arrange to be picked up at Killamarsh Station by the Master Cutler.

I remember the picture house, the owner was a Miss Ward.   The back row of seats were doubles, the balcony as it was called was at the back and about 6 rows of seats which were up steps.  There were two usherettes, ticket ladies, ice-cream ladies and everything else.  When I was at school I was not that big but I must have been as big as them, one was called Queenie, one would watch the toilet area which was divided of the main auditorium with a curtain, there was an emergency exit in there and they made sure no-one could let anyone in without paying.

In the corner of the site between Rother Valley Way (Cow Lane) and the LMS line now occupied by MTE truck bodies near the road and railway line was the remains of what I believe was a navies village from when the railway was built.

As a teenage we congregated at the coffee bar on Kirkcroft Lane which had a Juke box, did we get seventeen people into an old ford pop and drive it round the village?

Somewhere off the right of Rother Valley Way was some sort of Military Storage area.

Behind what was the Secondary Modern School were concrete air raid shelters, half sunk and buried with soil, very eerie places.

I had a friend called Jeff, his mother was the daughter of the Mallinders who lived in the old farm which was somewhere around Mallinder Close. I can just remember it, it was stone with low doorways.  I know the facilities consisted of a wooden board over a pit which needed to be shovelled out.  Jeff’s father was a signalman at the scissors where all the lines crossed towards Beighton.  I have been to the signal box and watched him work when trains came from all directions.

There were houses on Field Lane and a man with a hook on one arm repaired shoes in a little shed, he may have been called Marrison.

There was a foot bridge off Field Lane with stone steps over the canal.  I thought that was called the Cat Gallows.  In a field on the Eckington side of the canal was some sort of tunnel, it may have been a drain, it may have been about 4ft square and led almost all the way to Eckington.

Local Electricity was supplied from Renishaw Works which was part of the Staveley Works. The electricity was 240 Volt, 30 cycles rather than the normal 50 cycles.  This was done as the owner of the company (could have been a Captain Stannier) decided that if the supply was 30 cycles people in the area would have to buy their appliance from his stores but other people produced converters.

We had a mains radio but believe accumulators could be charged at the Post Office.

About 1955 Bird’s shop on Kirkcroft Lane burnt down, a son and a friend died in an attic bedroom.

I don’t know what the year was but after the White City had been built there was a tremendous rain storm and the road and gardens were flooded.  Water came up from the road drains, the Hagins were marooned, eventually huge diameter pipes were laid down the lane by the Juniors to the river to take the rain water from the White City.

Kids in the past were little goody, goodies. I never put empty dustbins on top of coal houses; tied them with string to door handles, knocked on doors and hid, or tied door handles together, and I know Bull roarers wouldn’t be a good idea with plastic pipes.

Other things that I remember about the surrounding places

When the explosive store exploded at Westhorpe it caused cracks and damage to the plastering at father’s house at Mosborough.

I can remember the dam in Eckington woods having some water in it, the building on the corner down Gas house Lane at Eckington had the remains of an old water wheel. As I said Dad worked for Glovers who owned the property, he told me that later the mill was driven by a gas engine that needed a fire cracker to start it.  In the woods was an air raid shelter for the men who lit fires in the wood to encourage the German bombers to drop bombs in the woods rather than on Sheffield.

Minor corrections in other areas

My name is Alan Godhard, not Alan Goddard.

My Mother was May Snowling not Macey Snowling

Otherwise a fantastic site, keep up the good work.

I would love to hear from anyone who remembers me or can add to what I have submitted.  Try not to let our information and memories die with us. I hope my reminiscing encourages others to expand on what I have written or write their own.

Alan Godhard


Peter Lewis Walker writes about his father Eric Walker


After being encouraged by an old school friend, I recently visited the Killamarsh Heritage Society website and was delighted to see my grandfather Lewis Walker, my mother Eunice Walker (nee Wadkin) and to read about an enquiry for the Savana Dance Band.  I therefore thought some of your readers might like to be reminded about my father Eric Walker and his love of music and Killamarsh.

My father Eric used to live at 24 Mansfield Road, High Moor along with his father and mother Lewis and Emma (nee Longstone).  They came with his grandfather Samuel from Tideswell in order to transfer into coal mining.  This is also where I was born.  When I was 3 we moved into the new housing development at Norwood.  I remember with great fondness growing up in a small mining village and in a home full of love and music.

Dad left school at 14 to work at Kiveton Colliery but he also found he had special gifts in music.  Throughout his life he was involved in the Savana Dance Band, Killamarsh Silver Prize Band and earlier, the village orchestra.  He played the piano, tenor horn, euphonium, trombone, alto saxophone, clarinet and accordion.

The Savana Band. Eric Walker behind the Savana sign. Photo courtesy of Peter Lewis Walker.

I am not sure when the Savanna was formed but its members were family and friends and the core of the band stayed together.  There was Dad on alto. sax. and clarinet (sometimes piano), Ernest Cramp on alto sax., Aubrey Tesh on tenor sax., uncle Sam Walker on trumpet and Ian Fox on trumpet.  In the early days I remember my uncle Joe Wadkin playing the drums before my brother Keith taking over the sticks.  There was also John Turner on piano and Cal Shimwell on trumpet.  They had a good reputation in the district and were good enough to take the Peak District Challenge Cup in the earlier years.  They provided lots of local entertainment for the village and the surrounding area.  They had full coverage of all the main ballroom and Latin American dances.  Dad spent countless hours repairing manuscripts and transposing for different instruments.

Dad was also a good pianist and could always be relied upon to find the keyboard in exchange for a pint!  He worked hard to accompany numerous singers in the pubs and clubs in Killamarsh; some of them not knowing which key they were singing in!

The Savanna Band. Eric Walker centre front row. Photo courtesy of Peter Lewis Walker.

I don’t know whether there has been a history written about Killamarsh Brass Band but if there has then Johnny Shimwell particularly and Dad would certainly feature.  Apparently Dad was a talented tenor horn player and sought after by National bands.

Killamarsh Brass Band. Photo courtesy of Peter Lewis Walker.

What I remember about the Band is how welcoming, encouraging and collegiate they all were.  I enclose only one photograph from many, simply because these are the faces I remember from my childhood in the band.  Perhaps others can add their names.  Johnny Shimwell was the conductor and leader of the Band and another music icon and a good friend in the village.  His brother Cal was a fine cornet player and well-known throughout the area.  The photograph also shows uncle Harold Walker who helped out on the bass drum and John Drakett a good friend of Dad.  In fact the site already indicates a strong link between the Draketts, Cartwrights and Walkers.

There is much more to be told and I probably need to write a thorough recollection of growing up in Killamarsh, but I hope this short piece will be of some interest.



Regiment:    York and Lancaster

Rank:    Sergeant

Service No:    313 745

Enlisted:     29.8.1914

Killed in action  17th September 1917 Aged 23



Born in Killamarsh in 1894, the son of Robert and Elizabeth Walker, Joe lived at High Moor and larger at Norwood.  The 1911 census shows that he was employed as a “Colliery pony driver underground”, probably at Norwood pit.

After the outbreak of war in 1914, Joe walked to Sheffield with his Killamarsh pals in order to ‘join up’.

He was enlisted into the York and Lancaster regiment on 29th August 1914.  Joe was trained at Pontefract, Yorkshire with the 3rd (reserve battalion) York and and Lancs.

Details of Joe Walker’s Service taken from army records:

13.07.1915  Post to France with the 7th Battalion York and Lancs

20.08.1915  Invalided home wounded, injury described as ‘bullet wound right arm severe’.

02.01.1916  Returned to France posted to 8th Battalion York and Lancs.

23.07.1916  Appointed Lance Corporal in the field.

02.10.1916  Wounded and sent for treatment

10.10.1916  Rejoined the Battalion

20.10.1916  Appointed Corporal

03.12.1916  Awarded Military Medal

19.04.1917  Appointed Lance Sergeant

17.09.1917  Killed in action

Joe survived the Battle of the Somme, only to lose his life a year later in 1917.

He is commemorated on the Tyne Cot memorial at Passchendale, Belgium on panels 125 to 128 in the south rotunda of the memorial.



I lived at No 5 Boiley Lane throughout my teenage years with my parents, Leslie and Dorothy Stevens and my elder sister, Lesley and younger brother Timothy.  We all went to Westfield School.  My dad, a teacher, was brought up in Soft Water Square, Killamarsh and is related through marriage to the Bartholomews of Rose Cottage, where cousin Christine still lives.

It was my dad who managed to get the houses  connected with electricity. The five houses had to spend something like £40 a quarter each on electricity; what sounds like peanuts now was a cause of great debate with the neighbours.

I think it must have been about 1964 when our houses had their roofs blown off when someone tried to break into the powder magazine for the Westthorpe Pit and blew himself up.  It was Easter time but it was snowing hard. In the middle of the night my brother found himself out of bed and standing on glass. At first my dad told him off for being out of bed until he discovered that we had no electricity and no windows!  I remember newspaper reporters coming for interviews and a photo of my mother was in the paper – News of the World I think. We cooked on the coal fire and relied on Tilly lamps for light.

I think I was due to go on a school hiking trip but for the life of me I I can’t remember if I went but I don’t think I did. I was greatly relieved that the tree that grew next to the magazine was still standing as I used to climb it and do my revision there!

I read somewhere on the memory bank an article by a man writing about playing down Boiley Lane but can’t find the article again. He mentions the ponds and the slag heaps. I remember seeing a group of lads skinny dipping in one – perhaps it was him!

I also remember walking across the golf course from Eckington late at night having missed the last bus home from Sheffield to Killamarsh. I think my greatest fear was missing the bridge and falling in the River Rother rather than the fear of being attacked.

I was a teacher in education all my working life, mainly in London and I now live in Cumbria.



To Miss Joan Tompkin    1918-2016   R.I.P.

Miss Joan Tomkin, Teacher at Killamarsh Endowed School

 What can I tell you about the woman I knew as Aunty Joan ……..

Joan was born at 3 Queens Road in Beighton on the 8th November 1918.  Her Grandparents on her fathers side were the great and renowned Milliners of Sheffield who came from London somewhere in the 1800’s.  Her father was enlisted into the Army and was brought back home by hospital train from Flanders.  It was touch and go whether he would get home due to mustard gas poisoning.  Joan was aged one month, he then died two months later so Joan didn’t get to know her father.  Her father has one of the only two war graves in Beighton St Marys Church yard (Theodopolis Tompkin).  She was brought up by her Mother and Aunt in Beighton and got a scholarship to a College for Ladies in Derby.  On the eve of World War Two she wanted to be a Wren, but due to the services being well subscribed to was approached by the principal and talked into going into teacher training due to a vast shortage of teachers due to the war.

She had trained as a St Johns Nurse (she had to do two days a week at weekends from Friday to Sunday).  Her mother worked with the WRVS on Victoria Railway Station in Sheffield (in the history of Beighton book there is a picture of Joan in uniform the Junior School in Beighton being taken over by the war effort as a Hospital).  She then worked at various schools in the Diocese of  Derby, for the Church of England and as well being a Parish Clerk at St Mary’s Beighton was kept very busy.

During the war a troop train carrying military personnel was sliced in two whilst travelling on the Great Central line toward Sheffield near Beighton Station when a load of steel plates moved on one of the trucks in a sidings.  Because of the War and Propaganda Ministry keeping it as hush hush as possible nothing much was reported.

However two sailors where billeted at Joan’s house as were the rest of all on the train who where not maimed or decapitated in the disaster, until transport could be found to move them onward.  One would become a beau of Joan’s but this was short lived! They saw each other twice until he joined his ship, the ill-fated HMS Hood that went down with all hands sunk by the Bismarck (leaving poor Joan left shattered).  Life went on for Joan although with ups and downs she often poured out to me her regret that her mother could not afford a cap and gown at her graduation so she was one of the graduates without cap and gown (a wish she so wanted).

She was based at various schools in training and then Mosborough School until a position became available at Killamarsh Endowed School (now St Giles) after meeting and knowing well Mr Harston the Head and she worked with for decades in  Killamarsh,  I am not sure when she started there but I understand it to have been around 1948-49 and she was there with the Head until he retired in 1971 when she was Acting Head until her retirement in 1977.

I know many at Killamarsh will have memories of the person who I have always called Aunty Joan.  An adopted aunt as her mother child minded me when my mother went back into a nursing career, and when her mother died in 1969 we adopted Joan and she would spend weekends with us.  Life was very different when Joan grew up.  She had no father figure in her life and was quite naïve by all accounts, so buried her life in her school work with the children of Killamarsh and the Church which played a great part in her life, helping to arrange things and being always roped in (even teaching the children Maypole dancing at the annual Rectory fair.

As a child she took me everywhere, I remember a school trip to Drayton Manor Park (even though I didn’t go to the Endlowed School).  I went on the school trips she took from there, long before rides and theme park status.  I recall seeing the lions and having bacon and tomatoes with bread and butter and jelly and Ice cream, and the fact that it rained nearly all day.

Joan’s mother was a wonderful lady, she too lost her father at Holbrook Colliery when he past away in a mining accident (he was Methodist Minister at Sothall in Beighton and a leading Liberal figure (the main political parties back then being Liberal and Conservative)

Not a great deal more I can say but if anyone has any photos or memories please include them on this site

LUKE OLDALE                                                                                                           Shireoaks and the Grant & Macallan Coach



Me as a boy

Born:    1948 in the Prefabs at Killamarsh

Mum:     Hilda Dopson (nee Laws)

Dad:      Trevor Dopson from Nelson South Wales

Me with my brother Allan

Above:  Me with my brother Allan.

We moved to 3 Norwood Crescent in 1949 when I was 6 months old.  In the family then was my brother Graham and sisters Wendy and Eileen.  Over the next few years I was joined by another sister Jennifer and 2 brothers Allan and last but not least Philip.

My Brothers and Sisters

Above:  With my brothers and sisters – back row left to right – Philip, Allan, Keith, Graham.  Front row left to right – Jenny, Eileen, Wendy.

My Mum and Dad stayed at the above address until they passed away.

I obviously don’t remember too much about the move to Norwood, except for my Dad telling me that as he was pushing the pram up Lockhill one of the wheels fell of the pram, well he was a Fitter at Westhorpe so he shouldn’t have had a problem putting it back together.

Hilda and Trevor Dopson - my Mum and Dad.

Above:  My Mum and Dad

I look back now and do wonder how my Mum and Dad managed to bring 7 children up, we certainly weren’t rich but we had everything we needed for a good upbringing, food, clothes and lots of love, oh and for me a new pair of football boots when I needed them.

Both my parents as I am sure many others did worked and worked to achieve the above.  Our house was known as Hilda’s cafe, it didn’t matter what time of day you visited you got fed, as some of my friends where to find out later on in our teenage years, we would go back to mine (Barry Morris, Bug Burgess) after the pub closed 10 o’clock on a Sunday night and Mam would knock up some bubble and squeak with a few slices of beef and of course brown sauce!!

My grandchildren ask me what I did when I was growing up. I tell them that I would take a bottle of water and along with other friends went off for the day, playing in the woods on the tunnel tops, flying kites off the top of the tips near the Angel pub and playing in the old Norwood pit, we would walk to Harthill and swim in the ponds or cycle to Cresswell for the swimming baths.  On the odd occasion we would go into Sheffield to the Glossop Road baths. We played football on the streets for hours and only moved for the odd car or someone selling from their van, Coop bakers Mrs Hutchins (Brenda’s Mam), Billy Whewel fishman and 1or 2 others plying their trade.

I wouldn’t swop my childhood for theirs even with all the electronic gimmicks they have today because they don’t have the freedom we had.  The list above is just a few of the things that we got up to. I am sure you can all add to it.

Here’s just a few, hotrice, kick the can, jack jack shine a light and hedge hopping.

I went to Norwood Infants/Juniors and then across the road to the Seniors.

I have to go along with Eric Morris’s comments about the teachers, we even used to meet them at the weekends and go climbing, on the odd occasion after school we all jumped in the back of Terry Allun’s pick up van, cling on tight and go out to Birchens Edge.  Of course no H&S in those days, our parents relied on Mr Hurst and Mr Reynolds to take care of us. They stayed behind to play badminton, table tennis and we also did trampoline and gymnastics – good times.

I was also lucky that our Head Master Mr Reid was a football fanatic and took a great interest all things to do with game, you didn’t get a minutes rest during the game.  He would be shouting at you to pass and move which stood me in good stead all through my footballing career until I was fifty.

Was I scholar?  Well I think the following comment on my last report will sum it up and it was, ” If Keith took as much notice of me as he does of the girls, he could go far”.  I of course blame the girls!!

I wonder what he would think when I became the Chair of Birley Campus PTA and then a Guvenor, probably what is the world coming too.

My first job was at Guardshaws foundry in Eckington (now the Coop).  I probably should have been a miner as all my family and male relations were, but after one school visit to Westhorpe, I told my Dad it was not for me.

In Hong Kong

Above:  In Hong Kong

It wasn’t long before I realised this was not for me and joined the Royal Navy for almost 10 years, 5 years in Hunter/ Killer subs, a little ironic I wouldn’t go underground but ended up under the sea, there are many stories from those days but I will save them.

My wedding day

Above:  My wedding.

It was British Steel next until Maggie shut us down, onto being a Financial Adviser and finally a job at Pennine Foods where I retired at 60 as their Health and Safety Manager.

Now I describe myself as a man of leisure except I seem to be busier than I was at work.  This could be down to looking after my 4 year old grandson a couple of times a week, you sure get to play some interesting parts like Ben 10, Fireman Sam, super heroes and not forgetting Scooby Doo!!!

I finish this part with, I have been to many places in the world and I have not resided in Killamarsh since 1969, but I still feel like I’m coming home when I cross that bridge and as my wife used to say my accent changed by the time we had got to the Midland!!!



1943 – 2014

Ron Marshall

It is with sadness that we announce that Ron Marshall passed away aged 72 on 11th February 2014 after a long illness.

He leaves a wife, Janet, 2 sons Matthew and Michael and 12 grandchildren.

His funeral on 5th March was attended by members of the family and many friends, and Janet is very grateful for their continuous support.

Ron contributed lots of articles to the Killamarsh Heritage Society website which you will have read with interest.

Ron was very supportive of Killamarsh Heritage Society and you will find his memories and stories under All Our Stories on the website.

He will be sadly missed.




Brian Arblaster

It was with deep regret that we heard of the sad death of Mr. Brian Arblaster.

Brian was well known in and around our village as an extremely talented goalkeeper, having played professionally for Chesterfield, Sheffield United, Barnsley and Matlock Town.

Brian was a well loved family man.  He leaves a widow Julie; daughter Angela, sons Paul, Gary and Simon and six grandchildren.

A resident of Killamarsh for most of his life, he later moved to Barlborough then to Staveley for five years.  Brian worked as an HGV driver up to his retirement in 2008.

All the donations collected at Brian’s funeral have been shared between the Dementia Society and Nethermoor Care Home.

Julie, Angela, Paul, Gary, Simon and all the family would like to thank everyone who attended the funeral and a special thanks to the staff at Nethermoor Care Home for their support and kindness shown to Brian during his short stay there.


By Melvin and June Shepherd

William Shepherd and Annie Amelia Johnson's wedding at St. Giles Church.

William Shepherd and Annie Amelia Johnson’s wedding at St. Giles Church.

William and Amelia's wedding certificate

William and Amelia’s wedding certificate

My interest started in researching my family ancestry when my wife started doing our family trees.  We started gathering information together by visiting relatives, and collecting as many old photos of members of our families as we could lay our hands on, and with the Shepherd family we came across a photo in our collection which was 100 years old on the 22nd of November 2008, of my Grandparents wedding.  They were William Shepherd (born 1887 – died 1917) and Annie Amelia Johnson born 25th December 1889.  They married on 22nd November 1908 and we have their original marriage certificate which verifies this date and also tells us they were married at Killamarsh Parish Church.  The photo looks as though it was taken outside in the Church grounds, so looking at the photo it made us interested in who the people were in it because basically we only know who the bride and groom are.  From finding the photo we then started our hunt for the Shepherd’s ancestors.

Albert Shepherd and Emma Jane Paulucci's marriage certificate

Albert Shepherd and Emma Jane Paulucci’s marriage certificate

We found out from my cousin Margaret that my Great Grandmother was called Emma Jane Pelucie, of Italian descent, and further research told us her father (my Great Great Grandfather) was called William Pelucie, and Emma was born in West Bromwich, my Great Grandfather was called Albert Shepherd, who father (my Great Great Grandfather) was called John Shepherd from Killamarsh.

Margaret also told us that my Great Grandparents might has been buried in Killamarsh Parsih Church cemetery, so from that information we set off, from our home in Harworth, on our trip to Killamarsh Parish Church.  Once we arrived we started looking at the old headstones in the churchyard, and to our amazement we found the grave we were searching for, but what we didn’t expect was to find that they shared the grave with two of their sons, one of them to my surprise being my Grandfather William Shepherd who is on the wedding photo.

William Shepherd (1887 to 1917) with his family. He was killed on 22 October 1917 during World War 1

William Shepherd (1887 to 1917) with his family.

I was surprised because I thought that he was buried in France where he died on 22nd October 1917 during World War I a war hero attaining the Military Medal.  He was only 30 years of age.  My father, who was also named William was only 18 months old at the time of his father’s death, their other son, who was buried with them, was Albert who died in 1918 aged 33 years old.  Sadly both sons died before their parents.

Below:  Albert Shepherd (born 1910) and William Shepherd (born 1916) in their later years.

Albert Shepherd (b. 1910) and William Shepherd (b. 1916) in their later years.

After that visit we decided to go there again, and take some flowers to the grave, only to discover after speaking to John Hall (Reader) and Chris Lambley (Church Warden) inside the church that there was another grave at the side of my Great Grandparents grave belonging to another of their sons called Fred, who died in 1960 aged 65 years old.  John Hall then told us that there was another grave for a George and Ethel Shepherd, and suggested they could also be my relatives.  We knew straight away that they were, as we had found out through our research that my Grandfather William had four brothers, George (born c. 1880), Albert (born c. 1885), Tom (born c. 1891) and Fred (born C. 1895).

Mel stood at the side of his Great Grandad's grave. He is buried alongside his wife and two of their eight sons.

Mel stood at the side of his Great Grandad’s grave. He is buried alongside his wife and two of their eight sons.

When we were shown where George and Ethel’s grave was, once again we were amazed as we found that Ethel was 6 months past her 100th birthday when she died, and George died on the 9th of May 1941, just 10 days before I was born.  So we found all my Grandfather’s brothers except for Tom.  Now the search is on for him.

Abe Shepherd and Alice Shepherd (nee Mallinder) - grave in St Giles cemetry     Great Uncle Fred's grave in St Giles Church Cemetery. It is next to the grave of his parents and 2 brothers.

What we did find when visited the graves was that flowers and wreaths had been put on them, probably at Christmas by the look of the ribbon that was on the wreath on George and Ethel’s grave.

Albert Shepherd, Maggie Shepherd (nee Clark) and William Shepherd

Albert Shepherd, Maggie Shepherd (nee Clark) and William Shepherd

4 generations of Shepherd's, L to R George Shepherd,his mum Emma Jane Shepherd nee Paulucci, his

The photograph above shows four generations of the Shephered family.  Pictured are George Shepherd and his Mum Emma Jane Shepherd (nee Paulucci),

We understand from a book on Killamarsh that what is now Bridge Street used to be called Shepherd Lane, which was named after on our Shepherd ancestors.  It was named after him because he was the Guardian of the Poor.

It would be nice to get in touch with any other member of the Shepherd family from Killamarsh, they may even have a photo of my Grandparents wedding, and be able to shed some light on who the other people on the photo are.  I’d be very interested to find out as one of the men looks very much like me, and I would love to know who it is that I look like.



Jenny Dopson

My name is Jennifer Hazzard.  My maiden name was Dopson and I lived in Norwood Crescent, one of seven children.  My four brothers and two sisters live within a radius of 10 miles around Killamarsh.  Perhaps you know some of them.

I now live in Australia with my family.  I married a Chesterfield boy and we decided to have a great adventure, so we set to come to Australia, but we did it the hard way, overland and many countries later, but that’s another story.  We have a wonderful life with two grown up daughters, one is married and the other some time soon.

We are in Perth, WA, where we have the most amazing beaches 20 minutes away, so we do like to spend days at the beach even though at the moment it can get too hot.  We enjoy the barbeques and outdoor living.

We have been here for 38 years, so I think you can say we really like it here.



I lived in Killamarsh on the new estate at Norwood from about 1950 until I was 18.  I think we were the first occupants.  I left Killamarsh in 1978.

I went to Norwood Infant and Primary Schools where I remember Mrs Smith who lived on Primrose Lane, and Miss Burton who had a flat on North Crescent.  In the primary school I remember Mr Lowe, but particularly Mr Large who many years later I played football with at Westfield’s Sports Hall.

In the Secondary School (across the road) I have fond memories of most of the teachers 0 Mrs Martin, Miss Briggs and her big bloomers (she must have 95 then).  I wnet on outward bound courses with the school to Overton Park and Whitehall at Buxton with Mr Reynolds, Mr Hurst and Mr Ellen.

When I left school, and after trying farming and Chesterfield Art College, in April 1967 I finished up with the NCB, training at Grasmore – but based at Westhorpe as an apprentice electrician.  I have fond memories of many people there but I was always a square peg in a round hole, so I was pleased to leave in 1975 to go to teacher training college in Huddersfield.

After 8 year day-release, the idea was to teach electrical engineering in an FE college – but after teaching practice in Barnsley and Castleford Colleges – I decided to go to university to study politics.  After studying A levels at Richmond College I went to Sheffield University.  Quite an achievement for someone who failed their 11+ and got crappy CSEs (Maths/English/Science were grade 4s – GCSE equivalent to Fs).

After nine years teaching in and around Sheffield I got a job in South East London – where I taught Communications.  But later I developed an Access programme – which are crash courses for adults in preparation for a degree.  This was obviously very rewarding.  In 2000 I completed a Masters in Political Thought which got me a job teaching first at the University of Greenwich – later on the degree and Access programmes at South Essex College in Southend.

I now live in Southend – not the centre of the world – but the jobs good – and it pays the bills.

I miss Killamarsh and the North enormously, and so I am looking forward to retirement when I can hopefully return ‘home’.

My favourite climbing tree is on Mansfield Road and 50 years later – this summer I am going to take my ten year old son there this summer to see if he can climb it!



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My name is Janet Jackson now but I was born Janet Gascoigne on the 16th of April, 1942 in Jessop’s Hospital in Sheffield.

My parents and I then came to live at number 42 Green Lane which was a stone cottage situated about halfway down the lane near to the entrance to Westhorpe pit yard,  just about where the entrance to the business park is now.

My family and I moved to 31 Dumbleton Road on the Manor Estate around 1954 where I stayed until I was married in 1961.  I attended Killamarsh Endowed School and then Killamarsh Secondary Modern School where, although not lacking in intelligence or so I was told by my teachers, I wasn’t particularly academic but loved anything artistic or musical, being in the school choir and orchestra I always enjoyed.

On leaving school aged 15 my first job was at Marrison & Catherall Magnet Factory in Forge Lane.  I hated every minute of this period but it was a job with wages and no travel so did as I was told and got on with it.  However after 4 years and getting married I was given the sack for taking a week’s holiday with my husband, but later whilst collecting my belongings, I was summoned to the Manager’s Office to be offered my job back.  In no uncertain terms I told him what to do with it.  He had done me a huge favour.  Apparently the then Employment Exchange had instructed the firm that the other 3 employees and I had to be reinstated as a week’s unpaid holiday was not a sackable offence.  I then went to work for Dawson Brothers on Pinstone Street, in Sheffield selling fabric, a job I loved.  At last I could commute to work with my friends.  This job lasted for 3 years until I stared my family.  The next few years whilst my 2 sons Phillip and Lee were small and during their early school years, I filled my time with home dress making and part time jobs working hours that fitted in with my husband being at home from work to take care of them.  These jobs included a fruit shop, Woolworths at Christmas and a long stint as a cook for Sheffield Area Health Authority working late afternoons and weekends at a nurses’ home in Broomhill, where nurses stayed during their training in the Sheffield Hospitals.    This was also the time my husband and I started learning to dance, something we both loved and although I don’t get to do it very often now I still love it.

After the nurse’s home closed I moved to Debenhams on the Moor selling all things for the home dressmaker and after 9 happy years, sometimes enjoying my two sons working in the store first part time school holiday jobs and then full time employment till Phillip received his degree, I finally finished there when my husband, Roy, took redundancy from the pit in 1991.  After a 4 year break I went back to selling fabric and haberdashery in Crystal Peaks where I stayed until I became a widow in 2002.

I finally retired and have spent the last 10 years caring for my Grandson Tom whilst his parents are at work, the best job in the world.  Sometimes hard work and tiring but never dull or uninteresting.  Holidays and Christmas are always great fun, he is the best ever.

Love you Tom.




I was born in Killamarsh in1939 on Fanny Avenue on the Manor Estate that was built for the miners.  My dad was Leslie Sewell, and my mother was Bertha who played piano at the Nags Head and the Blacksmiths Arms (when it stood on the roadside).  I had a sister Phyllis who married William Gee Pemberton from Barbers Row at the top of Renishaw Hill.  We both went to St Giles School (the Endowed School) then to Norwood Secondary Modern School where you stayed till you left at 15.  I got married in1957 to Thomas Glossop who lived in Barlborough Park.  We bought a house on High Street and have lived there 55 years on the14th December thls year.  We have 2 daughters Paula (born in 1961) and Claire in (born in 1963).  They both still live in Killamarsh.  We have 1 grandaughter Leanne, 4 grandsons Adam, Ricky, James and Lee and 1 great-grandson Mackenzie, 2 great grandaughters Lacie and Alexie.  Both our daughters got married at St Giles Church just as we did and all the children were chistened there.



 Born 20th April 1926 (Hitler’s Birthday)

Writer of Poetry and Prose much in local dialect and in humerous vein (I’ve tried a transfusion)

Dave Froggatt - Killamarsh Author and Poet

Started work as signal lampman at Woodhouse as a sixteen year old, it being wartime I was taken on before having a medical with the Railway Doctor some months before taking same – and failed – no reasons given.  Not long after, volunteered for Aircrew, underwent two rigorous medicals and a Selection Board and selected for Pilot/Navigator/Bomb-aimer training.

Married Killamarsh girl Dora Doxey in 1947 whilst in R.A.F. and came to live in Killamarsh on demob in 1948.

Started on railways at Chesterfield LMS Parcels Office in 1948, then to Yardmaster’s Office Holmes.  Next a Stationmaster’s Clerk at Parkgate and Rawmarsh and then supposedly as Goods Clerk at Killamarsh West.

I say supposedly, as shortly after I got there, the clerical staff of Goods Clerk, Passenger Clerk and Junior Clerk was reduced from 3 to 1.

When Killamarsh West closed I was transferred over to Killamarsh Central.  I can’t remember how long I was there – some years – and then transferred to the penal colony at Sheffield Victoria Parcels, eventually getting promotion to a Claims and Correspondence Clerk at the parent Sheffield Midland Parcels ultimately rising to the dizzy heights of Chief Clerk.

Some little time after this, the Powers that Be became aware that Parcels had gone from being Poor Relation and was now, thanks to the prestigious and money making Red and Night Star services, raking in the lolly.

This gave rise to the setting up of the Red Star division, responsible for the Parcels Business; Market traffic; Post Office and Newspaper trains, and I was appointed as Area Parcels Manager Sheffield and fitted out with pin-striped suit and black bowler.

My area at first consisted of Sheffield/Chesterfield/Rothrham/Barnsley/Mexborough and Worksop, then eventually extended taking in Doncaster and parcel points to Grimsby and Cleethorpes.

I finally took early retirement on 28th April, 1989.

It would be in the late Seventies that I agreed to take over the publication of the original Voice – the monthly magazine of KAMCA – and gradually built up the circulation to around 1,400 -1,500 a month – appointing myself Village Ob-gob in the process.

Sadly, the team of volunteer distributors (mostly elderly) got fewer and fewer, and this, together with all the demands on my time due to the new parcels organisation, it became no longer practical to give it of my best.

I’ve always tried to be active in village life, and like to feel that I have put more into Killamarsh than I’ve taken out and am pleased to be living out my life among so many friends.



1894 – 1918

Athal was born in May 1894 to John and Alice Swindell, who lived on Rotherham Road, Killamarsh.  He had two younger brothers, Royce John and Eric William.  His father was a miner, as was his grandfather.  After leaving school in Killamarsh Athal also went to work in one of the local mines as a pony driver.

After the outbreak of World War One, Athal enlisted in December 1914, joining the 26th Battalion of the Nottinghamshire & Derbyshire Regiment, known as the Sherwood Foresters.  The Regiment had been formed in Chesterfield in September 1914 as a Second Line Unit.  In November 1914 the Unit moved to Buxton, using the Empire Hotel as Battalion HQ.  In January 1915 the Unit was transferred to Luton under the command of the 2nd Notts and Derby Brigade, North Midland Division.  Whilst in Luton, Athal spent 10 days in hospital in July 1915.  In August 1915 they were moved to Watford and then on to Dunstable.  Following his enlistment, Athal trained as a Lewis Gunner.

During April 1916 the 26th Battalion was sent to Ireland to quell the uprising there and sustained some losses.  In January 1917 the Unit was sent to Fovant and on to Boulogne, landing there on 25th February 1917.  By May 1918 the Batallion had been reduced to a small number of men and was disbanded on 31 July 1918, with the remaining men being transferred to other Units.  Athal was transferred to 1st Batallion, 24th London Regiment, known as The Queen’s Regiment.

Following his transfer, Athal arrived in Calais during August 1918.  He was killed in action on 14th October 1918 and is buried in Tue-Petillon Military Cemetery, Fleurbaix, Pas-de-Calais, France.  His grave reference is III A.8.

After his death, his mother Alice received some of his personal effects, including his notebook, letters and photographs.  She wrote to the Millitary Authorities to say that his watch, fountain pen and signet ring were missing.  It is not know if they were ever found.

Athal’s War and Victory Medals were sent to the family in May 1922.

The Battlefield Cross, which originally marked where Athal was killed, was presented to St Giles Church in 2011.

Athal Frederick Swindell’s name appears on a plaque in the Memorial Window in St Giles Church, as well as on the War Memorial at the end of Kirkcroft Lane.

There is a memorial to the Sherwood Foresters on the top of Crich Cliff, near Ripley, Derbyshire.  There are no names on the memorial but it commemorates over 11,000 soldiers from the Sherwood Foresters Batallions and 14,000 from other Regiments affiliated to them.



Fred Greaves VC (16 May 1890 to 11 June 1973) was a recipient of the Victoria Cross, the highest and most prestigious award for gallantry in the face of the enemy that can be awarded to British and Commonwealth forces.

He was born on 16 May 1890 in Killamarsh.  He was 27 years old and an acting corporal in the 9th Battalion, The Sherwood Foresters (The Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire Regiment), British Army during the Battle of Broodseinde in the First World War when he performed a deed for which he was awarded the Victoria Cross.

On 4 October 1917 at Poelcapelle, east of Ypres, Belgium, when the platoon was held up by machine-gun fire from a concrete stronghold and the platoon commander and sergeant were casualties, Corporal Greaves, followed by another NCO, rushed forward, reached the rear of the building and bomed the occupants, killing or capturing the garrison and the machine-gun.

Later, at a most critical period of the battle, during a heavy counter-attach, all the officers of the company became casualties and Corporal Greaves collected his men, threw out extra posts on the threatened flank and opened up rifle and machine-gun fire to enfilade the advance.

He later achieved the rank of Sergeant.

Fred died in Brimington near Chesterfield on 11 June 1973.  His Victoria Cross is displayed at the Sherwood Foresters Museum, Nottingham Castle.



I was born in Beighton but moved to Killamarsh when I was 5 years old, when my Dad got a pit house on the estate that was to become know as the White City.

Then I went to Killamarsh Endowed School and from there went to Westfield Comprehensive School in 1959.

I married a local girl, Jackie Watson from Norwood, in 1970 and bought a house at High Moor.

I worked at Westthorpe Colliery as an electrician from 1964 until it closed.  Since then I have had numerous jobs including HGV driving, and my present job, Patrol and Response Officer for G4S.

I was married to Jackie for 22 years before she tragically died.  We had one daughter, Heather, who is now 30 years old.

Since then I met a girl from Stocksbridge who I married in 1996, and am currently living at Stocksbridge with her.

Michael Parr                                                                                                                   June 2012



(This piece has been emailed to us by Frank Shaw who now lives in Hightstown, New Jersey, USA.)

Francis (Frank) Shaw at Bergen-Belsen Memorial Grounds in Germany in 1965. Photo courtesy of Frank Shaw, New Jersey, USA.     School Reunion 1999. Maureen Shaw, Frank Shaw, Unknown, Hilda Hancock, Unknown. Photo courtesy of Francis Shaw, New Jersey, USA.

My family moved to Killamarsh in November of 1953, I think, from Beighton when my father Eric Shaw changed jobs from Brookhouse Colliery to Westthorpe Colliery.  We moved to Rectory Road in what was then the brand new White City.  I attended the Killamarsh Endowed School first Mrs Swifts class and then Mr Thorpes.

Then to Killamarsh Secondary School in September of 1957 until December of 1961.  Then after working in Dronfield and Sheffield I joined the army in September of 1963.  After serving in Scotland, Germany, Hong Kong and Northern Ireland I left the army in December of 1976.

I started working in the tourist industry (Carnell Tours) Sheffield driving and guiding tours to Europe, then moved to London and specialised in tours of London.  I made friends with a family from Pennsylvania on one of the tours and visited them and every year the holiday in the US got longer until I stayed and applied for permanent residence in 1980.

I worked in New York City for a multi-millionaire as his house manager, taking care of his three residences, office in Madison Avenue and Estate in Bermuda.

I met my wife Maureen who was the Boss’s Office Manager, when I started working in the City and we married in 1982 (we have just celebrated out 30th Anniversary).  I have been a naturalised American citizen since 1986.

After being in the book business for 15 years I now work as a Supervisor in a major Beer Distribution Company in Trenton, New Jersey.  A virtual paradise for any beer drinker, lots of cheap beer, something like 2 pound 50 pence for a case.

Frank Shaw                                                                                                                       May 2012



Alan Armstrong in 1951 (ex Stanley Street)        Alan Armstrong

Alan Armstong was born in Chesterfield in 1946. His family were devout Methodists who lived in  Killamarsh.  Alan has a strong belief in God but does not subscribe to any religion.

His interests include Egyptology, Turkish travel, historic MG sports cars, swimming, fell walking, playing piano, organ, and guitar, whilst singing the old time country music songs.

Working in industry until 1994 he then became a further education lecturer and qualified as an External Verifier for a well respected Awarding Body. This position gave him work at many colleges throughout central England.

He represented a major motor manufacturer at the 2004 Motor Show & has been responsible for the generation of many NVQ Level 3 certificates by assessing apprentices in the workplace.

Alan’s previous workloads took him to areas in central & eastern England teaching motor engineering.  He has been a member of the Engineering Council since 1997.
Licentiateship of the City and Guilds of London Institute was conferred to him in 1998.
His contact with special needs students allowed him to develop specialised skills in teaching and training.

Alan has written six books, two of them on philosophy.

“The Lost Daughter” novel was dedicated to his partner Sue and sister Jill.

Alan’s latest novel “Divine Justice” was published in July 2011 and provides the sequel to “Untimely Events”.  This book is dedicated to the memory of the Alan’s mother Jessie Armstrong who was in later years a great influence on his life.

Alan worked with children who do not access the state schools for their education. It is this work that gave influence to most of the poems in “Life in Verse!”

Schools & further education colleges would find this work gives an insight into dealing with difficult situations involving young teenagers.

Alan’s books can be found on Amazon and he would greatly value all reviews by his readers and respond personally if required.


45 thoughts on “Killamarsh People

  1. What has happened to all those folk who attended Killamarsh Endowed School from 1954 to 1960?
    Remember Mr Harston, Miss Shirtcliffe, Miss Tompkin, Mrs Swift, Mr Thorpe, Miss Helliwell, Miss Shimwell etc. etc.Looked at the last photo on this site of the pupils at Killamarsh Endowed and remembered all their names.
    Methinks an update is surely due. Regards to All.

  2. hello im researching my family tree caudwells i know they lived on sheffiled road also westthorpe sadly ive discovered a great aunt died aged 1 her name was beatrice

  3. Hi everyone, I am looking for any information for Mr Samuel Johnson & Edith Trussell, Edith may have been using Johnson as her surname, they lived at Rose Villas, Lock Hill, Killamarsh. Mr Johnson worked as a miner at Waleswood Colliery , He died March 1924 the funeral took place in Killamarsh church yard.
    Mr Johnson & Edith had these children all born between 1910-1921;
    Edith (Laura) Clarke/Johnson
    Samuel kenneth Johnson
    Frances May Johnson (stayed in killamarsh & married George Barker)
    Edith Johnson
    Gladys Hilda Johnson
    Beatrice Johnson
    Ronald Johnson
    any information would be appreciated.
    thanks Claire

  4. Hi, my name is Ray Sturgess, I live on the Isle of Wight, I am researching my family tree, my great granddad had a brother George Sturgess ( born abt. 1843 in Paulerspury, Northampton.) he moved to Killamarsh to become a coal miner, in the 1881 census he is in Upperthorpe, Killamarsh. He married Elizabeth Wilcox , their children were –
    Mary Ellen (born abt 1877) she married Frank ( Francis ) Pressley.
    Sarah (born abt. 1880 ) she married William Hill Smith.
    Ada ( born abt. 1883 ) she married John William (Mallinder ) Mallender (collier).
    George ( born abt. 1885 ) married Ruth Hall.
    Ernest ( born abt. 1889)
    All born in Killamarsh.
    Does anyone have a connection or any info about this family ?
    Regards Ray Sturgess

  5. To April Burdett
    From Les Pond did you get my information about the Burdett family ?
    I remember Keith being born Lucy was in the navy during the war Pat married a soldier he was wounded he lived in Kent Betty and Joyce worked at a sweet factory in Chesterfield Betty married a man from Kiveton park Norman ? Joyce married a soldier from Scotland when he left the army he was a bus driver they lived on Norwood Close ?
    Albert worked at Kiveton Colliery
    Hope this has been helpfull

  6. Hi, my name is Megan and I am looking for any information or photos regarding my grandma’s partner who was like a father to me. He died a few years ago which has broken my heart and I would love to hear any stories anybody may have. His name was Roy Silver, he was married to Gillian, had a daughter named Kerry and two more sons I think one was called Wes. He was a bus and coach driver and he loved his job, he always had the funniest jokes and was always laughing. I would love to hear your stories and I would massively appreciate it, I know this is a long shot but it’s worth a try! Thank you!

  7. Hi

    Just love your website. I have written a Novel “Nowt But Drippin’ which is based in Sheffield and will be published later this year.

    I am now writing a sequel and it includes a character who goes off and starts a business building trailers. Its based on my step cousin Ian Moreton who did just that in the 70’s. I think it was in Killamarsh or Halfway… a teenager at the time I didn’t pay much attention. Does anyone remember him? Or did you work for him? Or did you go off and start your own business. Would love your help. Cheers Julie

  8. re the Savana Band.
    I remember in the late 1940’s old time dancing to the band at the Miners Welfare on Kirkroft Lane. In the early 1950’s the band played at the Eckington Drill Hall, this time it was modern dancing. The band had it’s own bus there and if you were lucky and early enough to go on the bus, then you could go back to Killamarsh on it. Otherwise it meant a long walk across Eckington meadows,then a footpath by the side of the old LMS rail track to the bridge on Sheffield Road and then home.Usually there was quite a group walking and chatting together and, here my memory fails me, I can’t ever remember it raining.

  9. HI all, interesting site to read about other real people’s lives. My son is about to move into the area 242 Sheffield Road. Anyone on ths site have information on people that have lived here? Would love to hear any info.

  10. Hi
    My name is Roslyn Tucker and I live in New Zealand. My Mother Edith Newton lived in Killamarsh in the 30s to 40s. I think her address was Jubilee Cresent. Mum was married to John Fredrick Newton for a while before moving to live in Sydney Australia. Mum was born in Sheffield in 1917, her parents names were, Joe and Elizabeth Vardy, she had a half sister Annie.
    Does anyone remember my Mother or John Fredrick Newton
    Many Thanks

  11. With regards to Ernest Cramp, a newspaper report in 1932, showing him playing in a Brass Band at Killamarsh. Evidence seems to show him playing in various bands for over 50 years.

  12. I have been researching the Froggatt Family of Froggatt and Calver. It may be of interest that in 1633 a Barbara Froggatt of Calver married wealthy Robert Myrphin of Killamarsh and in 1639 her sister, Grace, married wealthy George Warde also of Killamarsh.

  13. ATHAL FREDERICK SWINDELL The battle field cross was presented to the Congregational Church by the family who attended the church and when the church was in transition the St Giles Parish Church were asked to look after it.

  14. Surprised to find my name mentioned on this net, was good to hear that you are O.K. Would be good to hear from you.
    Best regards,

    • If you are the John who was in my class at school a warm hello!
      I can remember meeting you at a Reunion at the West End pub a few years ago. Hope you are well & send all best wishes.

  15. I am looking if anybody knows where the Pemberton lived in Killamarsh or of any graves in the burial ground

    • I have a life long friend whose maiden name was Nancy Gee-Pemberton. As a child she lived in Wain’s Row and later moved to the Delves Estate. Her father was Benjamin Gee-Pemberton and she had relatives who lived in Barbers Row, near the crossroads uphill from Renishaw. Ben and his wife Hilda nee Woodward are buried in Killamarsh churchyard. Hope this is the correct Pemberton.

    • My grandmother, her parents & siblings lived on Green Lane in 1891. A great Uncle & Aunt lived on High St, at a later date & another great Aunt lived in Norwood Crescent in her later years.

  16. Hello
    I lived for some years at Halfway, my father worked for Mr Peat, Longfields House think.
    I was born at Westthorpe — a member of the Greens of Westthorpe, my grandfather was a deputy at Westthorpe Colliery as wAS his son, my uncle Tom.
    I had a friend John who lived with his dad Fred across from the LNER station and we travelled bt train to Chesterfield to go to William Rhodes School.

  17. I am looking for any information someone may have regarding my late great uncle, George Henry Ashall, who passed away in Killamarsh in 1998? In his early years he played football for Wolverhampton Wanderers and Coventry City. He is the uncle of my late mum. Any information would be very welcome. Thank you

  18. This is just to say I could not believe I found Brian Arblaster on a web site I worked with Brian at his last place of work as an HGV driver before he retired and a few times I went out with him when it was two drivers to a lorry and he used to sit and tell me all about his football career and I found him very interesting and he was all ways happy and he all ways had us laughing in the transport office when he retired I all ways used to think what Brian was doing and one day when I got back to the yard I see a news paper cuting with Brian’s photo and when I read it and it said he had been unwell and sadly passed away it took my breath away and I could not believe it thinking when Brian retired how well he was my thoughts go out to all of his family. Barry Rowe

  19. What a great site this is.
    My sister was Edna Batterham. Would anyone have her funeral notice that was in the newspaper.
    Thanks in anticipation.

  20. I have recently discovered that Benjamin Hirst Newton (c1770-1832), who had been a tobacconist and perfumer in London in the 1790s until 1804 at least married his second wife, Elizabeth Gill in Harthill, South Yorkshire in 1815, and then they had children in Killamarsh over the 1818 to 1826 period, but then he seems to have died in Stamford, Lincolnshire and was buried there on January 11, 1832, aged 62. Does anyone have further information on this family? Vincent

  21. I would like to hear from anyone who either was at school or worked with me at Osborne halfway I have lived in Spain for the last 7 years since leaving the stone cottage at the side of the church at killamarsh

  22. Hi all
    I am trying to find out more info of a gt grandad.. Richard Grice
    I believe he was station master at Killamarsh pre April 1893..he went on to Gt. Glenn station master, then onto Darley Dale station master…and finally to Olney, Buckinghamshire. Anyone know anything to help?
    Greatly appreciated
    Alison x

    • Some books containing copies of his correspondence are in the Buckinghamshire Archives. I read through some of them a few years back and my memory of the contents is a little hazy, but they give an excellent impression of day-to-day life at this small country station. (My grandfather began his railway career at Olney when he was about 17, around 1905 if I remember correctly. Richard Grice was his first boss during the decades he worked for the Midland Railway (and later the LMS).

      • Hello Robin, if your grandfather started at Olney in 1907 he must have known my grandfather Harry field who also started at Olney at around the same time. Also Midland railway and LMS, and BR at the end.he had four years away from the railway getting shot up at Francilly-Selency march 1918.

    • Hello Yolanda would you know if John Fredrick Newton is a realation of Eric Newton. My Mother Edith Vardy ( her maiden name ) was Married to John, married about 1937/8 for about 8 years I think, before her moving to Australia
      Many Thanks

  23. I was interested to see the entry from K D
    I was at school with your brother Graham Terry Brown I lived in Killamarsh nearly all my life on Peatfield road then on the white city the last house I lived in was the cottage at the side of the church I have lived in Spain for the last five years remember me to your brother


  24. im looking into my family tree for the burdett/ paulucci side of my family. my great grandma was mary ann paulucci she also used johnson for some reason she married william burdett they had three children albert, tom, and emma burdett. I just want some info on what they all did when they were alive. eg brickmaker shop owner anything just to help me know a lil more bout my dad’s side of the family. many thanks.

    • Can any one help me with information about Martha, Lucy and Betty Burdett. Mothers name Ethel, maiden name brunt. She married Albert Burdett in 1915. I’ve found out they are my late dads half sisters. Any thing would help. Or if any family are still in killamarsh that could help many thanks x

          • Hello Keith
            My name is Les Pond i am your mothers cousin I can remember when you were born we lived in Worksop and came to Killamarsh about once a month to see Albert and Ethel your mum and Betty and joyce cousin Pat lived in Kent and she married a soldier she was a lot older than me she sometimes cam to see her mum have you still got that blond curly hair ?All the best Les

      • Hell
        My name is Les Pond Ethel Burdett was my mothers sister born 1903 Station Rd one of a family of 11 Somers Alfred George Harry Cyril Ephram Richard Ethel Letisia Lucy Richard their father married a woman called Eades her son William married a woman called Parnel
        We always called him cousin Billy

        • Hello
          My name is Leslie Pond my mothers name was Lucy nee Brunt she was Ethels sister they had Their father had eleven children
          Somers Alfred Ephram George Harry Cyril Richard Ethel Letty Lucy
          I hope you recieve this infomation
          Les Pond

  25. I have recently found your wonderful website, and I am hoping someone will be able to help me with our family history. We have been searching for information on the following family for a number of years without much success.
    My mother in law Beatrice Johnson was born in 1920 to Samuel Johnson and Edith Trussell.
    Other children born to this couple were Samuel Kenneth 1911, Edith 1914, Frances May 1913, Gladys Hilda 1917, Ronald 1921. Various addresses given at the time of their baptisms at the Killamarsh Parish Church were Sheffield Road, Ashley Lane, Loch Hill and Rose Villas Lock Hill.
    My mother in law Beatrice was reared by the Oldale family in Sheffield. We do not know when she was fostered out or if she had any knowledge of her siblings. Were some, or all of these children fostered out, or did some of them stay with Edith after Samuel Johnson died in 1924. Samuel was a miner. A marriage has never been found between Samuel and Edith, both appear to have been married previously. Any help with information on this family would be much appreciated as Beatrice died some years before we started out search.

  26. Hi
    I am researching my family tree and would love to haer if anyone can remember my grandparents and their families.Lucy Newton,Richard Newton and Ann Marie Whiting.

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