Frank Halfpenny EM

b. ? d. ?

DATE OF EM ACTION: 12/01/1918 Podmore Hall Colliery, Halmer End, Staffordshire.

Very little is known about Frank Halfpenny other than his actions in the Minnie Pit of the Podmore Hall Colliery in Staffordshire on 12th January 1918.



On the 12th January 1918, at about 10 o’clock in the morning, an explosion of gas and coal-dust occurred in the Minnie Pit of the Podmore Hall Colliery, Staffordshire; there was a great deal of noise caused by the reversal of the air current and a great deal of dust and smoke. Halfpenny was about 500 yards from the bottom of the pit at the top of the new haulage. When the explosion occurred he lay down on the floor, and then reaching the telephone he attempted to communicate with the top. He received no answer, and, although enveloped in smoke, he proceeded without the slightest hesitation to the top of a dip about 800 yards away, where he was able to telephone to the surface and inform the mine manager of the state of affairs below ground. On his way he had found the bodies of two lads lying in the gutter; these he lifted out and placed by the side, and one of the lads ultimately recovered. In all the circumstances Halfpenny’s journey of 800 yards into the dip was a very brave act. Most men instead of making it would have at once rushed for the shaft, but Halfpenny, instead of doing this, went to see what aid he could render, quite regardless of the risk he himself ran in so doing.