THE HARTLEY PIT CALAMITY 1862:
a display in words and images to mark its 150th anniversary
The Hartley Pit Calamity of 1862, when 204 men and boys lost their lives, was the first large scale mining disaster of Victorian times. The extent of the Calamity, together with the spreading of news by rail and telegraph, brought this tragic event in rural Northumberland into the homes of families throughout the land on a daily basis.
The reaction from the public, together with the interest shown by Queen Victoria, kept the story in the press for more than a month. Just as evidenced in 2010 in the Chilean mine rescue, the public were gripped by the horror of men trapped underground and the heroic efforts made to rescue them.
A new display has been produced by Northern Voices Community Projects to mark the 150th anniversary of the Calamity. It has been compiled by Dr Keith Armstrong and Peter Dixon of NVCP and members of the Hartley1862 Research Group and was commissioned by North Tyneside Council with the support of the Heritage Lottery Fund. With historical documents and images, alongside the background history and poems and photographs by local people, it forms part of a series of events and activities intended to ensure that the story of Hartley is not forgotten.
The display begins its tour at the beginning of September 2012 as part of the Heritage Open Days programme in St Alban's Church, Earsdon and at New Hartley Memorial Hall where it runs alongside the newly commissioned pathway in the memorial garden.
Further venues follow from October until December 2012 when it appears at Blyth Library, Wallsend Memorial Hall, Segedunum Museum (Wallsend), the Linskill Centre (North Shields), Newcastle Library, Seaton Sluice Community Centre, the John Willie Sams Centre (Dudley) and Wellfield Middle School (Whitley Bay).
NORTHERN VOICES COMMUNITY PROJECTS, 93 WOODBURN SQUARE, WHITLEY BAY, TYNE & WEAR NE26 3JD TEL. 0191 2529531