LETTER: The facts surrounding the Maltby Miners Memorial

MALTBY Miners Memorial Community Group would like to post some “facts” contrary to the letter published in the Advertiser from D J Brennan and repeated on social media by him and other individuals about the group and our efforts.

We as a group would like to correct the mis-information and accusations spewed by these people, so in chronological order (not bad for imbeciles) please read the facts as listed:

  1. The group had its inaugural meeting with Anne Stewart MTC clerk, Maltby Colliery Memorial Working Party, as set by the clerk for this meeting only (then became Maltby Miners Memorial Community Group never had the word monument in it) Wednesday August 20, 2014 it was decided the group be run by residents not the council, at this meeting Andrew Fletcher became treasurer.
  2. At the first meeting on August 20, 2014 it was agreed for Dave Hart to approach Maltby Academy to ask if the students could come up with some designs for the memorial.
  3. Throughout September 2014 an online survey was undertaken to see where residents would like to see the memorial built. (so the public have been involved in decisions re the memorial)
  4. On October 6, 2014 feedback from other schools wanting to be involved in designing the memorial, group agreed to all Maltby schools coming up with the design of the memorial, so they could take ownership of it. (the wider community helping make decisions on the memorial)
  5. October 2014 a bank account was opened in the group name of Maltby Miners Memorial Community Group.
  6. October 2014 while having the calendar photo shoot at the pit D J Brennan’s paintings were rescued from being thrown down the pit shaft these were given to several group members by someone working for Hargreaves (these paintings were commissioned by the pit manager from D J Brennan while he was employed by Maltby Colliery so were owned by the colliery owners)
  7. Monday December 1, 2014 Dave Hart proposed a sponsored bike ride in Tesco and Co-op (not D J Brennan’s son as was mentioned on social media)
  8. Monday December 1, 2014 the group were informed that the Crags School will be adopting D J Brennan’s paintings rescued from the pit.
  9. Monday February 2, 2015 the group were informed the paintings are now in the Crags School. The members received an invite from the Crags School headteacher to a grand unveiling of the paintings in their new surroundings at school on March 3, 2015 at 3.30pm. Bill reported he and D J Brennan had recently visited Crags and seen were the paintings were and had a look round school and had a good welcoming day.
  10. Monday March 2, 2015 Bill Spilsbury informed the group he had been invited to give a speech re the memorial group at the unveiling.
  11. Two cheques received from D J Brennan made out to Maltby Miners Monument Group ((incorrect name) both for £50 one dated March 9, 2015 the other March 10, 2015 both banked by A Fletcher and Bill Spilsbury where Bill spoke to the bank teller about the incorrect name on the cheques, who said it was okay they knew who Bill and the group were. Mr Brennan could verify they had been cashed and into what account via his bank statement therefore knowing they had not been lost.
  12. March 10, 2015 all the school’s memorial designs were on display in the library for all to see and vote on. (again, involving the public)
  13. Saturday March 21, 2015 sponsored bike ride attended and helped by a variety of people at both locations, store staff, football teams, bike team’s teachers and pupils etc. (including DJ Brennan and his son).
  14. April 7, 2015 D J Brennan attended a meeting and offered his service as the publicity officer to the group. (The unveiling was discussed at length D J B made no negative comments)
  15. May 6, 2015 two group members went to Leeds to a Heritage Lottery workshop which was a prerequisite to apply for funding.  HLF ref: OH-14-09158
  16. Monday May 11, 2015 D J Brennan attended a meeting (no concerns or negative response)
  17. Monday June 1, 2015 D J Brennan attended a meeting (no concerns or negative response)
  18. July 28, 2015 Limekiln Lane Memorial to the 1923 pit disaster was opened to mark the resting place of the 27 men who lost their lives and were entombed underground permanently alone now the pit has closed, Bill Spilsbury’s grandad being amongst them “John Chandler Spilsbury” giving Bill Spilsbury a more personable link to the now closed pit.
  19. Monday December 14, 2015 AGM. Audited reports of the group’s finances were presented from an independent auditor Deborah Leathwood Laughton Road, Thurcroft. Dave Hart voted in as treasurer.
  20. Monday December 12, 2016 audited accounts (as above) presented at AGM
  21. Monday November 20, 9am-6pm at Maltby Library group members sat with the plans and information for everyone to see and have their say this was advertised on social media and by posters in local business’s people did drop by and ask questions and view the plans (yet again giving local residents a say on the memorial)
  22. Monday December 18, 2017 audited accounts (as above) presented at AGM
  23. Prior to the scheduled committee meeting on May 14, 2018 after various allegations and comments on social media and letters in the Rotherham Advertiser a public invite (which was standard each month) was put out for anyone to attend and examine the books and ask question of the group, three members of the public attended (who examined the accounts and files) none of the visitors where the ones who had made the allegations or comments these people chose not to attend and ask direct questions or view the accounts.
  24. No lottery bid has been submitted to date, so no money given or spent and no failed bids either, information has been collated if or when the group decide to apply for funding.
  25. Notice for meetings were posted on social media every month and on occasion visitors attended.
  26. There are members of the group who are serving members on Maltby Town Council who do not have dispensation to discuss the memorial group or vote on anything that they will benefit from e.g. the free let (which is voted on by all councillors who are not part of the group). There has been a serving member of MTC who has attended meetings this person was agreed by the council, all the group members are/ or were members of the group as residents.

All these facts can be evidenced.

Maltby Miners Memorial Community Group