This disaster occurred on Tuesday, 2 February 1858 in the Diamond Pit of the Bardsley Colliery Company, which was situated on Oldham Road (now Ashton Road), Ashton-under-Lyne (Oldham since 1954). The cause of the disaster was an explosion of fire damp ignited by shot firing. The proprietor of Bardsley Colliery Company at the time was Jonah Harrop (1799-1866) of Bardsley House, Bardsley.
The number of miners who lost their lives is quoted as being either 49 or 53, depending upon the source. Care was taken in compiling the roll given below but, because of conflicting records, strict accuracy cannot be guaranteed.
Each name in the roll is followed by the age and the death register references at Tameside Register Office, Dukinfield, (Knott Lanes Sub-District, 1858) and at the General Register Office (March Quarter 1858, Ashton).
National Archive Ref. HO 45/6608 dated 1858. Bardsley Colliery: Explosion of fire damp fired by a shot (‘HO’ refers to the Home Office).
A Primitive Methodist Sunday School was opened on nearby Keb Lane in October 1832 and a chapel was added in 1864. This chapel was mainly attended by mining families and a monument to the miners who were lost in the Bardsley Pit Disaster was erected inside it. This major disaster persuaded Samuel Oldham to gift the sum of £10,000 to found Ashton Infirmary (now Tameside Hospital) in 1861.
In 1844 Jonah Harrop partly financed the construction of Holy Trinity Church on behalf of the Church Commissioners and its site was a short distance to the north of Bardsley Colliery. The church was consecrated on the 10 October 1844 by the Bishop of Chester. On the 21 September 1852 the Lord Lieutenant of Lancashire commissioned Jonah Harrop as a Deputy Lieutenant.
Following Jonah Harrop’s death in 1866, Bardsley Colliery Company (Diamond and Victoria Pits) was sold to the Fairbottom Colliery Company who owned Wood Park Colliery a short distance to the north of Holy Trinity Church. Up to 20 July 1869 the proprietors of the Fairbottom Colliery Company (aka Messrs Lees & Booth) were John Lees, James Lees, Joseph Lees and George Edward Booth but on this day George Edward Booth stepped down as a proprietor. Members of the Lees family were also the principal proprietors/shareholders of the Chamber Colliery Company as well as being the owners of the nearby Park Bridge Iron Works.
|ANDREW Jonah||27||KNO/7/22||8d 263|
|BARBER Joseph||38||KNO/7/18||8d 261|
|BENNETT Joseph Henry||29||KNO/7/12||8d 258|
|BOOTH Jonathan||26||KNO/7/22||8d 263|
|BRADBURY James||17||KNO/7/13||8d 258|
|BRIERLEY Forrester||12||KNO/7/12||8d 258|
|BRIERLEY John||16||KNO/7/12||8d 258|
|BUCKLEY Edward||50||KNO/7/21||8d 262|
|CLARKE John||19||KNO/7/16||8d 260|
|DAVIES Robert||50||KNO/7/19||8d 261|
|DUNN John||12||KNO/7/16||8d 260|
|EDWARDS Robert||41||KNO/7/21||8d 262|
|EVANS David||23||KNO/7/17||8d 260|
|GIBSON Thomas||80||KNO/7/20||8d 262|
|HALL Joseph||23||KNO/7/17||8d 260|
|HAMPTON Samuel||18||KNO/7/19||8d 261|
|HYDE Robert||26||KNO/7/17||8d 260|
|IBBOTSON George||17||KNO/7/18||8d 261|
|IBBOTSON Ralph||13||KNO/7/18||8d 261|
|LEACH Samuel||14||KNO/7/19||8d 261|
|LEES Edward||12||KNO/7/16||8d 260|
|LEES Josiah Duncuft|
(or Isaiah Duncuft)
|LOMAS Joseph||13||KNO/7/12||8d 258|
|MATLEY Ralph||16||KNO/7/15||8d 259|
|MOORES William||40||KNO/7/20||8d 262|
|NEWTON Isaiah||29||KNO/7/15||8d 259|
|OGDEN Samuel||28||KNO/7/14||8d 259|
|PICKUP John||26||KNO/7/20||8d 262|
|QUARMBY William||18||KNO/7/15||8d 259|
|RIGBY Thomas||18||KNO/7/19||8d 261|
|ROBERTS John||35||KNO/7/13||8d 258|
|SCHOFIELD John||30||KNO/7/16||8d 260|
|SHAW Thomas||11||KNO/7/19||8d 261|
|STAFFORD Thomas||27||KNO/7/13||8d 258|
|STEPNEY Samuel||29||KNO/7/20||8d 262|
|STRINGER James||26||KNO/7/14||8d 259|
|TAYLOR Edward||12||KNO/7/14||8d 259|
|TAYLOR James||19||KNO/7/18||8d 261|
|TAYLOR Joseph||30||KNO/7/14||8d 259|
|TAYLOR Samuel||43||KNO/7/14||8d 259|
|WARDLE Jonathan||55||KNO/7/12||8d 258|
|WHITTAKER Jonas||23||KNO/7/15||8d 259|
|WINTERBOTTOM James||36||KNO/7/16||8d 260|
|WOODALL Abraham||15||KNO/7/17||8d 260|
|WRIGHT Joseph||39||KNO/7/15||8d 259|
|YARDLEY Joseph||10||KNO/7/20||8d 262|
|YARDLEY William||17||KNO/7/13||8d 258|