Mining village’s cash pledge boost for town centre memorial to Doncaster’s pits

A former mining community has stepped forward to become one of the biggest donors so far in support of a planned Doncaster pits memorial

Armthorpe Parish Council has pledged to put £500 into the pot for the boroughwide appeal to raise money for a permanent monument which would be constructed in Doncaster town centre.

Jo McQuade, miners daughter and local government officer, with a model of the proposed Doncaster mining memorial

Jo McQuade, miners daughter and local government officer, with a model of the proposed Doncaster mining memorial

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Armthorpe was home of Markham Main Colliery until it closed in the mid-1990s, with generations of villagers working at the mine.

Jo McQuade, miners daughter and local government officer, with a model of the proposed Doncaster mining memorial

Jo McQuade, miners daughter and local government officer, with a model of the proposed Doncaster mining memorial

It holds an annual memorial service for miners who worked there, and already has a memorial locally.

But parish council chairman Coun Sue McGuinness said members of the parish council were unanimous in pledging money to back the appeal.

She said: “The parish council supports the plan for a memorial and made a donation because Armthorpe’s heritage comes from mining.

“There are quite a lot of former miners on the parish council. Many of the families who lived in the village today moved here because of the mine. I’m really supportive of the project.

“Many of the older members of the community still have a strong attachment to the mining heritage.

“I think it will be great to have a mining memorial in place in the town centre, and I think it is something Doncaster needs. A lot of the surrounding villages were mining villages. It is all part of our history that should not be forgotten.”

So far £78,564 has been pledged towards a target of £133,122.

The fundraising effort had set a deadline for next week, but it has already been extended once.

The Free Press is supporting a campaign to raise the cost of the monument, through a crowdfunding appeal.

The planned memorial will include a bronze figure of a miner, as well as sculptures of the faces of genuine former Doncaster miners.

It has been created by the famous artist Laurence Edwards.

Readers can contribute to the appeal in four ways.

They can:

* Pledge online at www.doncastersminingstatue.org.uk.

* Send a cheque to Doncaster Council addressed to Doncaster Museum, Chequer Rd, Doncaster DN1 2AE.

* Cash donations will be accepted at Central Library, Doncaster Museum or Doncaster Civic Office.

* Make an in-kind contribution to any of the key elements to the project.