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Fatal Kite Flying at Kilnhurst

August 1910

Barnsley Chronicle August 20, 1910

Fatal Kite Flying at Kilnhurst

The adjourned inquest on the body of Lawrence Gladwin (10), the son of a Kilnhurst miner named Peter Gladwin, of Hicks Row, who was killed on Tuesday week by being run over by some empty wagons on the Thrybergh Colliery sidings, was held last Tuesday, at the Mexborough Primitive Message Institute, by the deputy coroner, Mr J Kenyon Parker.

The boy, along with a companion, was flying a kite in the pond field, when the kite broke, and the lads crossed the siding, crawling underneath some empty wagons to find the kite. They did not succeed, and as the deceased was coming back some wagons which had been shunted from higher up the yard buffered into those standing.

His left leg was cut off, his skull fractured, and he died in the Mexborough Montagu hospital later in the day.

At the previous enquiry, the Coroner was not satisfied with the evidence and now recalled George Haynes, a Great Central Railway guard, living at Doncaster; Frederick Anderson, a shunter, employed by the railway company, living at Kilnhurst; Frank Hurst, the colliery Company’s shunter, and George Graham, who found the boy.

A plan showing the site of the accident was produced, and from this it was seen that owing to a curve knows the driver, fireman, nor the guard of the train could see the actual spot. The men were transmitting signals to each other. They had seen that all was clear before they commenced. Anderson said he could see the standing wagon from where he stood, but when he gave a signal to guard Haynes he had to turn his back on them. None of them saw the boys, and, in fact, did not hear of the accident until later.

The Deputy Coroner said he was quite satisfied the boy was a trespasser, but he also took into consideration the fact that he was only 10 years old, and that he had not very much discretion. He wanted the jury to be satisfied that it was not an everyday occurrence for boys to be playing about in the colliery sidings, and for following the dangerous pursuit of crawling under wagons when shunting operations were going on. He wanted to be satisfied that the colliery officials took proper step to prevent them straying onto the premises. He was not at all satisfied, however, how it was with these men working about, that the boys were not seen. Nobody was to blame, however,.

The jury returned a verdict of “Accidentally killed; no one being to blame.”