The Lump Of Coal
3 responses to “The Lump Of Coal”
Excerpt from “A likely story”, researching the Mountford family, by George Clifford Mountford, my late cousin. I suggested he name the history “Sermon on the Mountfords” but he wisely passed…
Fred Mountford, my grandfather, was born in 1881 at or near “The Lump of Coal” a public house in those days, but now a private residence at Brown Edge. Census records show that Fred’s brother George and sister Martha had followed their parents into the tailoring trade whilst John had become an earthenware potter, Joseph an ironworker, Harry was a colliery clerk and Thomas was running a business at home making locks.
Fred decided he wanted to be a Millwright. This was the pinnacle of the Steam Age and most mills would have been converted by this time from water or wind power to steam. Later records show him building and repairing machinery at Burgess and Leigh’s pottery which lies between the Trent and Mersey canal and Port St. in Middleport. He became well known and respected as a Millwright within the Potteries and once was sent to Bruges in Belgium to erect a steam engine for use in that city. Presumably that engine had been designed, made and exported by Boultons Engineers of Burslem.
Fred married his wife Bertha Stonier (from Tunstall) and they lived at 73 Forster St. Middleport, a few hundred yards from Burgess and Leigh’s works. They raised seven children. Elizabeth (Betty) 1906, Bertha 1913, Ida 1915 (my mother) Kathleen 1917, Edna May 1919, George Clifford 1907, Frederick 1910.
On the night of Friday 8th January 1943 tragedy visited 73 Forster Street, Middleport (from the Evening Sentinel). A middle-aged couple were fatally gassed and a daughter (Kathleen) was taken to hospital suffering from gas poisoning today as the result of an escape from a fractured main in the street at the front of their house. My mother found discovered the tragedy and raised the alarm, informing the police and medical aid. She was the only other occupant of the house. The houses at the bottom of the (now) Woolrich St. have now been demolished. No other houses were affected by the leakage.
I have more details if you are interested. Please use the subject “Mountford” if you reply to me. I took a photo for my cousin Clifford of the house that I was told was formerly the Lump of Coal. Do you have a contemporary one?
My nan Hanna Maria Bate use run the lump of coal brown edge I would love to now if you have any pics of her her granddaughter julieanne Bate now clutton