This page records miscellaneous information that may be useful to family historians. There is also a list of some birth and death records on the Eduction and Religion Tab. Please see also the Featured Articles Tab in this section which contain interesting histories and stories.
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From the Ripley & Heanor News published on 22 February 1929: "GOLDEN WEDDING AT SOMERCOTES - MR. & MRS. ROBT. HALFORD BAKER of 51, Bakery Yard, Leabrooks Road, Somercotes, who celebrated their golden wedding on Sunday last. They were married at South Normanton Church in 1879, the Rev. Canon Massey officiating. Mr. and Mrs. Baker are hale and hearty despite a life of hard work. Mr. Baker is a native of Bulwell. In the year 18?? when seven years old, his father, who was a pit sinker, came to Alfreton to sink the Deep Hard Pit belonging to Mr. Palmer Morewood. What little schooling Mr Baker received was during the next three years at a school in Alfreton carried or by Mr. Ollerenshaw. At ten years of age, he began work at the Old Highfield Colliery and it was twelve hours a day at that time. A year later Mr. Baker's, father moved to Tibshelf to sink the first two pits in that village. Mr. Baker assisted his father and fellow sinkers by sharpening tools and was the first lad to go down the pits at Tibshelf. Later Mr Baker worked at Worksop as a miner. Mr. and Mrs. Baker have lived at Somercotes 48 years, and he has worker 38 years at Birchwood Colliery. He had to give up mining ten years ago, owing to eye trouble. Mrs. Baker is a native of South Normanton, and is one of the oldest members, of Somercotes branch of the Mothers Union. She is looking forward eagerly to the Union's trip to London in June. There have been seven sons and six daughters of the marriage, five sons and five daughters living, along with twenty three grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. Mr. and Mrs. Baker have had their share of trouble and lost two sons in the war, one aged 30 and the other 26 years of age: also a daughter aged 25 years. Mr. Baker's father lived to be 86 and Mrs. Baker's mother lived to be 81 years of age."
From the Ripley & Heanor News published on 29 April 1955: "GOLDEN WEDDING AT SOMERCOTES. A small party was held Birchwood Lane, Somercotes, last Sunday, to celebrate the golden wedding of Mr. and Mrs. Thomas George Bullock. Married at Riddings Parish Church, they have lived all their married life at their present address. Mr. Bullock, aged 72, and still working, was born in Birchwood Lane and moved only "two doors” when he married. For 30 years he was a baker’s salesman in the district and is now employed by British Celanese Ltd., Spondon. Mrs. Bullock, who will be 71 in June, was born at Riddings, in Greenhill Lane. She has been confined to bed for the past 12 months, but before that she used to run a fish and chip shop. Their elder son, who has been in Vancouver for 2B years, is married and has two sons. Their other son lives with his wife and daughter at Somercotes."
From the Belper News published on 17 April 1936: "GOLDEN WEDDING - Celebrated By Mr. and Mrs. S. Coates, Somercotes - To-morrow (Saturday) Mr. and Mrs. Samuel Coates, of 35, Lower Somercotes, celebrate their golden wedding. Unfortunately, Mr. Coates has been unwell for some months and is confined to bed and as Mrs. Coates Is still suffering somewhat from the effects of a fall in her home last September, the good wishes which a wide circle of friends, chiefly among railwaymen, will extend to them will also include the hope that each will make a full recovery. Mr. Coates is a Hanbury, Burton-on- Trent, man and is the son of a farmer. He was connected with the farming industry in and around Burton until he was 19. He then joined a local regiment and served in the Army for six years, three of which were spent in India. He was transferred to the Army Reserve with the rank of Sergeant and was then called upon for duty during the Egyptian war. On leaving the Army Mr. Coates took up work on the Midland Railway first as a point-holder at Westhouses, and then as signalman at Newton Road station, near Tibshelf. Afterwards he was transferred to Cotes Park signal box and also worked for a time at Codnor Park Junction before he served as relief man. He was occupied In relief work for 25 years, and eventually returned to Cotes Park. He retired 10 years ago on completing approximately 44 years’ railway service under five station masters—Mr. Turner, at Westhouses, Mr. Clarke, at Newton Road, the late Mr. James Beeby, Mr. W. P. Best and Mr. F. G. Sugars at Pye Bridge. Mrs. Coates Is a native of South Normanton. She was born near the Market Place and was a daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Edward Birkln. A brother, Mr. J. Birkln, and a sister Mrs Robinson, still reside at South Normanton. Mr. and Mrs. Coates were married at South Normanton Parish Church, Canon Massey officiating. They have resided at Lower Somercotes for 50 years. There is no family."
From the Ripley & Heanor News published on 1 June 1956: "Last Friday Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Godber, of Birchwood Lane, Somercotes, celebrated their golden wedding. They are 83 and 81 years respectively. They have two sons, five grand-daughters, two great grand-daughters and one grandson. Mr. Godber was born at Screwbridge Farm, Lower Birchwood. He started work at the old Foundation Colliery when he was 13 and remained there until he was married and then transferred to Selston Colliery and later to Seely Colliery [sic] and retired at 66 years age. Mrs. Godber is still a member of Birchwood Church, for which she has always been a keen worker."
Note: Screwbridge Farm is not known]
From the Ripley & Heanor News published on 25 October 1957: "Four Generations At Somercotes Golden Wedding - Members of four generations will be present when Mr. and Mrs. F. Goodwin, 81, Somercotes Hill, Somercotes, celebrate their golden wedding, at a party given in their honour at the home of their daughter, Mrs. I. Anthony, of Ward Drive, Somercotes, on Sunday. The actual anniversary is tomorrow (Saturday), for Mr. and Mrs. Goodwin were married at Riddings Parish Church on October 26th, 1907, by the Rev. Harry Rogers. For more than 50 years they have lived happy and useful lives in the district, and a warm circle friends will join in congratulations. Mr. Goodwin, who came to Riddings as a young man, is now 70, and had completed 53½ years as a locomotive driver for the Stanton Ironworks Co. Ltd., at Pye Bridge, when he retired in September last year. Both enjoy a fair measure of good health and have been blessed with one son and two daughters, the eldest of whom is Mrs. Anthony, and the youngest, Mrs. Hunt, of Steam Mill Lane, Ripley. Their son, Mr. Douglas Goodwin, is not married and lives at home."
From the Ripley & Heanor News published on 16 July 1943: "MR AND MRS GEORGE LANGTON – Married at Ripley Church on July 15th 1893, Mr and Mrs George Langton of The Bungalow, Lower Somercotes, celebrated their golden wedding yesterday (Thursday). Mrs Langton was the daughter of Mr and Mrs John Fretwell, Greaves Street, Ripley. Mr Langton is the last of a family of winders. His father turned over the sinkers when the old Cotes Park pit shaft was sunk, and a brother, Ned, turned the last tub of coal from the same shaft. He also turned over the sinkers when the new shaft was sunk. Mr Langton worked at Cotes Park for 45 years and had to give up his job as a winder seven years ago through illness. There are five daughters, five grandchildren and one great-grandchild."
From the Ripley & Heanor News published on 1 June 1928: “GOLDEN WEDDING AT SOMERCOTES – MR AND MRS J PATRICK – Hearty congratulations are extended to Mr and Mrs Patrick of Somercotes who celebrated their golden wedding on Tuesday. The parties were married at Alfreton Church on May 29th 1878. Mrs Patrick is a native of Riddings and was born at 32, Church Street, opposite the Seven Stars Inn. She is the daughter of Mr Joe Rowe, sexton at Riddings and Somercotes at the time when the Rev. Arthur Cotton was curate. Although very unusual that she has lived to see this great day, it was allowed to pass very quietly in deference to Mrs Patrick’s wishes as only a year ago she underwent a very serious operation. In her girlhood her parents moved to Somercotes and she has lived about 60 years in that village near the old market place. Mr Patrick’s native county is Leicestershire. He was born at Moira. He is hale and hearty, not through lack of hard work either, for he began work at seven and a half years of age minding cows at a bob a week. His next job was carrying bricks in a brickyard at Moira for fourpence a day. At eight years of age he was driving a horse and cart on the main road loading clay. His father was a miller and hoping to better his position moved to Kimberley in Nottinghamshire, and Mr Patrick Jnr. got work at Watnall Colliery trapping doors at nine years of age. This was not a successful venture on his father’s part so the next move was into Derbyshire and at Somercotes Mr Patrick has spent 50 years of his married life.Working at Cotes Park as a lad, finally settling down at the Foundation Pit at Birchwood, belonging to the Butterley Company, and worked for that company for over 40 years down. He was a wonderful player on the accordion and there is no doubt he has handed this talent for music to two of his sons – Mr John Patrick, of Somercotes and Mr James Patrick of Golden Valley, who were playing before the public as pianists before they were twelve years of age. Mr and Mrs Patrick have had nine children, five of them living, four dying very young. The fifth son was Albert, who died 14 years ago in his 28th year. This was a very severe blow to the family. There are also 12 grandchildren. Mr and Mrs Patrick are devoted church people. On leaving him he remarked to our correspondent: ‘If I am spared until Tuesday morning I shall be found in Alfreton Church thanking God for preserving my wife and I thus far’”.
From the Ripley & Heanor News published on 15 June 1928: "GOLDEN WEDDING CELEBRATIONS AT SOMERCOTES - A very happy party assembled at No. 44, Sleetmoor, Somercotes, on Monday and Tuesday to celebrate the golden wedding of Mr. Joseph Oscar Rowe and Mrs. Mary Rowe. Mr. Rowe is 73 years of age, and Mrs. Rowe 72. They were married at Mansfield Woodhouse Church, on June 11th, 1878. Mr. Rowe Is a member of a very old Somercotes family, his father, Mr. Joseph Rowe, being the gravedigger at Riddings and Somercotes Churches. Mr. Rowe is the brother of Mrs John Patrick, who celebrated her golden wedding on May 29th. Mr. Rowe has lived at Sleetmoor all his life, commencing to work at nine years of age at the old Swanwick Colliery. After getting married he moved to the Shady Pit, belonging to the Babbington Colliery Co., and worked under that company for 20 years, afterwards coming back to Swanwick Colliery for 20 years. Mr. Rowe was for a long time employed at the crossing, Sleetmoor, until a new railway was made and bridge built. He was then made gateman at Leabrooks Crossing, retiring from that position about four years ago. Mrs. Rowe's native village was Bonsall, near Matlock, and she was a member of the well-known Brook family. Mrs. Rowe is very proud of being one of the oldest members of Somercotes Branch of the Mothers' Union, her membership going back to the time when they met in Mrs Bullock's house near the Laburnum Inn, Sleetmoor. They have seven children living out of a family of 15, 20 grandchildren, and four great-grandchildren."
From the Ripley & Heanor News published on 22 October 1937: "GOLDEN WEDDING AT SOMERCOTES - Mr. and. Mrs. George Scott, of The Lodge, Lower Somercotes. celebrated their golden wedding last Friday. Mr. Scott, a Riddings man, has been in the employ of Messrs. James Oakes and Co. Ltd. for 65 years. He started work at the age of ten at the Old Cloddy Pit, Lower Somercotes, for 6d. a day, and later worked for 45 years at Pye Hill Colliery. When he retired he took charge of the lodge on the Oakes's estate at Hollyhurst, and he is now at the Lower Somercotes Lodge on the same estate. In his younger days he was a member of Codnor Park Company of the Derbyshire Volunteers. He is rather deaf and attributes this to a chill caught at the Volunteers' Camp at Aldershot in 1879. His wife was horn at Stilton, and was in domestic service at the age of eleven, earning 6d. a day. When they were married Mr. Scott's wages, were 3s. 8d. a day. Mr. and Mrs. Scott were married at Birchwood Methodist Church, Somercotes. Mr. Scott is now 76 years of age."
From the Ripley & Heanor News published on 5 March 1937: "GOLDEN WEDDING AT SOMERCOTES. Mr. and Mrs. William Straw, of Cinder Road, Lower Somercotes, celebrated their golden wedding on Monday. They were married at Birchwood Chapel on March 1st 18??. Mr. Straw, who is 71 years of age was born at Swanwick, and Mrs. Straw, who is 78, is a native of Riddings. They have resided at their present address for 38 years. Mr. and Mrs. Straw are having a rough time in their old age. Mrs. Straw has been blind for over two years, and Mr. Straw has suffered from deafness for a number of years. They have had five children and there are 14 grandchildren. Mr. Straw worked as a colliery banksman at Birchwood Colliery."
From the Derbyshire Times & Chesterfield Herald, published on 5 July 1930: "SOMERCOTES RESIDENT’S DEATH - A well-known Somercotes family is bereaved by the passing at 34, Coupland Place, of Mr John Henry Taylor, aged 39. The late Mr Taylor became suddenly ill and was removed to Derby Royal Infirmary where he underwent three operations and died a fortnight after admission. He leaves a widow and five children,to whom sympathy is extended in their bereavement.The internment took place on Sunday at Leabrooks, Mr S riley of the UM Salem Church, officiating. Four cousins, Messrs Samuel Taylor, Percy Taylor, Joseph Taylor and Ernest Taylor carried the coffin.
There followed in the report a long list of mourners and those who sent flowers."
From the Derbyshire Times & Chesterfield Herald published on 2 August 1924: "A WORTHY SOMERCOTES COUPLE - Golden Wedding of Mr. and Mrs. Geo. Whilde - Tomorrow (Sunday) Mr. and Mrs. George Whilde, of High Street, Somercotes, celebrate their golden wedding, having been married at the Baptist Chapel. Swanwick, on August 3rd 1874. Mrs. Whilde was Miss Jane Bunting. Mr. Whilde was 76 yesterday (Friday), and his wife will be 69 on September 9th. Even at his advanced age Mr Whilde still attends his work as “dataller” at the Birchwood Colliery. He has been employed by the Babbington Coal Co. for the long period of 56 years, and for over 30 years was a deputy. All this time has been spent at two collieries —the old Cotes Park mine and, since that was closed down, at Birchwood. Like most men who have spent a lifetime underground, Mr. Whilde has not escaped accident, having had both legs broken on different occasions. He has always been keenly interested in sport, and in his early days played cricket with the old Swanwick Colliery club. Other members of the team in those days were John Parker and Jamie Bullock. Nowadays Mr. Whilde’s favourite pastime is a quiet game of dominoes at the Somercotes Club, and he can still play quite a respectable game of billiards. Mr. and Mrs. Whilde have had six children, of whom three survive, whilst they have eleven grandchildren and four great-grandchildren. The worthy coupie happily still enjoy remarkably good health and are able to take an intelligent interest in life. Their many friends will congratulate them and wish them once more “long life and happiness”.