Robert William Roberts EM

b. 16/11/1872 Buckley, Cheshire. d. ?

DATE OF EM ACTION: 21/12/1910 Hulton Colliery, Westhoughton, Lancashire.

Robert was born in Buckley, Cheshire in 1872, the son of David Roberts. From a young age he became a miner. On 22nd May 1894, he married Harriet Beaumont at St Bartholomew’s Church, Westhoughton, near Bolton, Lancashire. He and Harriet had six children, before Harriet passed away in October 1910, leaving him a single parent. Tragedy would strike him again less than two months later when the Hulton Explosion saw Robert’s eldest son, Albert killed. Robert survived and was awarded the Edward Medal for his part in the rescue efforts. Less than six months after the disaster, Robert re-married, to Rachel Hatton, who helped raise his younger children. At the time, his youngest child, Norman, was just two. Robert worked down the pits for the rest of his working life as a colliery fireman. He and Rachel lived at 29 Manchester Road, Westhoughton and were living there at the time of the 1939 England and Wales Register.



On the 21st December, 1910, a terrible explosion occurred at the No. 3 Bank Pit at the Hulton Colliery, near Allerton, by which a portion of the casting of the upcast shaft was wrecked. Various miners were shut off from escape by the fall of earth, and suffered from the effects of poisonous gases. Many miners used their utmost endeavours to rescue their fellow workmen under circumstances of great danger, and the above showed specially conspicuous courage.