Allinson Mathers EM

b. 1872 North Colton, Yorkshire. d. 21/10/1943 Whitehaven, Cumberland.

DATE OF EM ACTION: 11/05/1910 Wellington Colliery, Whitehaven, Cumberland.

Allinson was the second of six children born to John and Mary Mather (nee Eltringham), and his older brother John Thomas, would also be awarded the Edward Medal for Industry for the Wellington Pit Disaster. Their father was a miner and moved around the North East looking for work. At the time of John’s birth they were living in Carlisle but by the time of Allinson’s birth they were now in North Yorkshire. Both Allinson and John Thomas followed their father down the pits and became miners. On 1st November 1894, he married Elizabeth Paisley in Arlecdon, Cumberland, and they went on to have three daughters, Ethel, Elizabeth Jane and Annie (all born between 1895 and 1904). Little is known about Allinson’s life following the award of the Edward Medal, but its believed he remained in coal mining, and in the Whitehaven area. He died in October 1943, aged 71, and is buried in Whitehaven Cemetery, in the same area of the cemetery as his brother John Thomas Mather.



On the 11th May, 1910, a terrible fire occurred in the Wellington Pit, Whitehaven, at a point about 4,500 yards from the shafts. Various rescue parties, with great courage and self-devotion and at considerable risk, descended the mine and endeavoured to extinguish the fire and penetrate to the persons in the workings beyond the same. Thorne and Littlewood, fitted with breathing apparatus, reached within a distance of 150 yards of the fire, but were driven back by the great heat and effusion of gases. The others got to within about 300 yards of the fire, working in the smoke backing from the fire. It was found impossible to penetrate to the scene of the fire or to rescue any of the entombed miners. Had an explosion occurred — a by no means unlikely eventuality, seeing that the mine is a very gassy one — they would undoubtedly all have been killed. Special gallantry was shown by John Henry Thorne, to whom the Edward Medal of the First Class has already been awarded, and by James Littlewood.