SKELTON - IN - CLEVELAND
IN HISTORY

1940.


Charles Holmes was employed by Skelton Air Raid Precaution while still a Scout. He later joined the RAF and flew with Bommber Command. See page 82 of Skelton Stories.

6th January - AIR RAID PRECAUTION AND FIREMEN'S PAY.
Before the War Firemen were paid for attending fires outside their hours of duty. Now in Wartime under ARP the Fire Service was a full time occupation.
Many auxiliaries are engaged. Work is divided into shifts of 8 hours where they are mainly standing by.
A small fire occurred last week outside of their hours and the men involved that they should receive extra payment.
The Government pay rate is 3 per week and the Local Council conceded the point.

6th January - FUTURE MIDDLESBROUGH FC CHAIRMAN HAS LUCKY ESCAPE FROM DEATH IN SKELTON.
Charles Amer of Flatts Lane, Nunthorpe had a lucky escape when his car collided on Skelton Ellars with a telegraph pole at the side of the Skelton - Guisborough road.
The pole was snapped and the car went through the hedge, dropped into a ditch and burst into flames.
The vehicle was totally destroyed.

Charles Amer.

Amer however sustained comparatively slight injuries.
He was detained overnight at the Admiral Chaloner Hospital, Guisborough, but was able to return home next day.
Amer went on to own Normanby Hall, the Marton Country Club and become Chairman of the "Boro".
However true, he has been associated with his controversial spell at the helm of Middlesbrough FC.
A Board member 1963 and Chairman 1973, a spell which ended acrimoniously amid financial problems that contributed to the club's slide towards liquidation in 1986.
He resigned in 1982. He was accused of financial impropriety in using his own company to build a Sports Hall at the old Ayresome Park, which charges he denied in his autobiography - "Just For the Record".
He was a self made man alright and had a long life after his Skelton escape -
born Grangetown, Coatham Grammar, Territorial Army, office boy at Dorman Long, saxophone player, dance band leader, owner of Palais de Danse, Stockton, developed Coatham Hotel, Redcar to one of the top Ballrooms, created a building company that made 1,000 local homes, bought Normanby Hall, built Marton Hotel and Country Club, major stake holder in Tall Trees, Yarm.
He died in 2012 aged 100.

8th January - Just four months after the war started food rationing came into force and a black market started.
Restrictions were made on the following items and each person was allowed per week - 4 ounces of butter/lard, 12 ounces of sugar, 4 ounces of bacon/ham, 2 eggs.

15th January - NORTH SKELTON STITCHERS.
The North Skelton Branch of Queen Mary's Needlework Guild, were more patriotic and raised 5 11s by the sale of mat and cushion covers.


16th January - NORTH SKELTON COMFORT FOR OUR SERVICE LADS.
North Skelton Soldier's Comfort Committee have despatched 33 parcels to our men serving in H M Forces.
Each contained woollen goods, cigarettes and chocolate.

22 January - FOOTBALL.
Guisborough Boys Club met with defeat for the first time this season on Saturday, when Skelton Athletic, at home, beat them 3 - 0.
Skelton are now only 1 point behind them as leaders.
The games between Dunsdale Rangers v Boosbeck and Swifts v New Skelton Albion were abandoned.



Class at Skelton Infant's School, 1940.
Names, reading left to right are -
Back Row - Keith Hanson, Audrey Palmer, ????, Marion Ward, Marie Bolton, Betty Bolton, Terence Padgett, Leslie Thornton.
Middle row - Billy Robinson, Malcolm Robinson, Bobby Laverick, ?????, John Featherstone, Audrey Harrison, Audrey Pattison, Audrey Nichols, Shirley Skipper, ???????, Pat Lupton,
Front row - John Robinson, Billy Laybourne, Dick Mossom, Norman Sherwood, Bobby Snaith.

[Photograph kindly contributed by Shirley Skipper, third from Right, middle row.
Her parents managed the Wharton Arms for so long it was known as "Skippers" see here.]

25 January - LOCAL MEAT SHORTAGE -
BUTCHERS PROTEST THEY ARE NOT TO BLAME.
Sir,
At at meeting of the butchers of the Guisborough, Skelton and Loftus area, held at the Wharton Arms Hotel, Skelton, protest was made against the allegation that the butchers themselves were responsible for the present shortage.
Reports in the Press and on the Radio suggesting that the butchers were not co-operating in working the new control scheme are quite erroneous.
The shortage is entirely due to the lack of supplies of English meat coming to hand.
A. B. Morrison. [Chairman] Lingdale.

31st January - DO NOT DRIVE AT OVER 20 MPH IN THE WAR BLACKOUT.
Motorists who drive at over 20 miles per hour in the black out will be stopped by a Policeman wearing white coats and waving red torches shoulder high
When this speed limit is in force tomorrow, motorists must travel at a speed which will enable them to pull up within their range of vision.
Police cars would patrol at 20mph and if a car overtook them they would be "gonged"
At 20mph a driver could see a pedestrian in 47 feet. If not he was not fit to be driving at night. Motorists should gauge their speed "by ear".
It was not legal to flick on the dashboard light.

2nd February - OH LORD, LET THERE BE A LITTLE LIGHT - AT LEAST.
Shift workers in the Mines and Works of East Cleveland, who are usually up for their work before dawn will be pleased to know that there is the possibility of subdued street lighting being allowed in the area.
Mr R L Hewling, the electrical engineer to the Skelton and Brotton Council is keen to introduce modified lighting as soon as permission can be obtained.
If the Government is prepared to make a concession to coastal regions Skelton and Brotton should get consent.
One of the essential stipulations is that Lighting should be centrally controlled, so that it can be switched off immediately an air raid warning is sounded.
This district was the pioneer of the introduction of Electricity and already has this capability.


Train Fares.
North Skelton to Scarborough 6s 3d return [31 pence].

5th February - SKELTON INSTITUTE OFFICIALS ELECTED.
At the 41st Annual Meeting of the Skelton Literary Institute the following were elected._
President - Capt C H Ringrose Wharton. Vice - Mrs C H Ringrose Wharton.
Secretary - Mr F M Hatfield, who succeeds Mr W H Ingleby, who is expected to join H M Forces.
Treasurer - Mr J R Bosomworth. Librarian - Mr J C Wilson.
Committee - M J Videan, J R Bosomworth, A L Austin, J Bennison, W Bennison, J Robinson, J Jackson, C Ridsdale, A Sherwood, A Breeze, T Cooper, W Hutchinson, E W Todd and J Taylor.


Skelton Literary Institute, first Right.
Photograph kindly contributed by John Hannah of the East Cleveland Image Archive.

5th February - NORTH SKELTON WORKING MEN'S CLUB OFFICIALS ELECTED.
Committee - E Groves, G Porte, N Foster, H Lancaster, C Gooderham, S Ovington. President - Mr G Bowers, Vice President - J P Thompson. Treasurer, Mr J Embleton. Secretary J P Thompson.
Income 1,7778 6s 9d. Profit for 6 months - 73 4s 4d. Assets 1,555 4s 9d and liabilities 708 5s 9d.

12th February - SKELTON WOMEN'S INSTITUTE FUND RAISING.
A Concert was recently given by the Choir, assisted by the St Aidan's Dramatic Society of Boosbeck.
There was a large attendance and 6 10s was raised for the Soldiers and Sailors Comforts Fund.

21st February - SKELTON SOCIETY FOR THE PROSECUTION OF FELONS.
Mr Richard Barry of Brotton presided at the Annual Dinner at Skelton.
It is reputed to be the oldest organisation of its kind in the Country, being founded in 1787, and the president said even possibly earlier than that.
It started as a guarantee society with 20 members as shareholders, the shares being allotted on value according to the financial status of the member.
There had been only 3 Secretaries for the Society during the past 120 years.
The present Secretary, Mr J L Taylor, had held the position 31 years and been a member for 46 years.
Whist, dancing and singing were enjoyed. Mr Fred Bell was the pianist.

Halfpenny Bridge.

4th March - SKELTON GREEN LASS DIES BY JUMPING OFF THE HALFPENNY BRIDGE.
Ruby Allison, aged 20, a single domestic servant, of 20 Boosbeck Road, Skelton Green died in the North Ormesby Hospital on this day.
She had multiple injuries by falling well over 100 feet from the Halfpenny Bridge.
Her father said that she was the youngest of a family of 7 girls and 6 boys. She had been unemployed fo 6 months and had not been in good health for several weeks and this he thought had depressed her.
She had walked to Saltburn in a storm and had never felt well since. However she was not longer under medical attention.
At the inquest the verdict was the balance of her mind was temporarily upset.
Helen Victoria Hudson, the wife of Francis William Hudson, the toll keeper of the Bridge House said that about 5.10 pm on Sunday she was crossing over the bridge on her way home for tea, when she saw a girl about halfway across looking over the side.
She asked her if she was crossing as she would have to pay a halfpenny. The girl said she was not and Mrs Hudson asked her to leave, which she did on the Skelton side.
After she had gone indoors, she noticed the girl on the bridge again. She called her to come back, but she took no notice and stepped onto the railing and jumped off.
The coroner asked her if it was possible to fall accidentally, to which she replied - Impossible.
Sgt S Smyth said that he was called to the scene about 5.40 and called Dr John Murray. They went together below the bridge and found the girl lying on the grass by the stream.
Her fall had been broken partly by a tree, but she was unconscious and badly injured.
Ruby's brother said that she had been off work for 6 weeks through influenza and since then had been moody and depressed.
Dr Atkinson of the N Ormesby Hospital said that she was unconscious when admitted and had a fractured left femur and 2 scalp wounds and death was due to severe injury to the brain.

5th March - MINE ACCIDENT.
After an accident at North Skelton Mine, early today, Frederick Brown, aged 19, was admitted to the Admiral Chaloner Hospital, Guisborough, suffering from concussion.

11th March - SOUTH SKELTON MINE, UNCLE AND NEPHEW BROKEN BONES WITHIN HALF AN HOUR.
The were both admitted to Chaloner Hospital, Guisborough suffering from injuries received in different accidents.
Walter Mee, aged 55, of Lumley Cres, Guisborough had a fractured leg and abrasions to his back, leg and arm.
Arthur Mee, aged 27, of Margrove Park had a fractured foot.

11th March - MEAT RATIONING STARTED.
Identity Cards and Food Ration Books for All.
Clothing Rationed.

21st March - MINE OWNERS, DORMAN LONG & CO TO QUIT FARMING.
The Company have farmed on an extensive scale in the East Cleveland area for many years and Bolckow and Vaughan before them.
The original object was to save the cost of compensation to farmers for damage caused by subsidence due to mining.
From the forthcoming May Day Wet Furrows and Hagg Farms at Skelton and Coombe Farm, Boosbeck will pass to tenants.
The Company will retain the lease which was obtained from the late Col Wharton and still has a number of years to run.
This decision is coincident with the retirement of their farm bailiff, Mr Matthew Scott, who is to retire to Sneaton, near Whitby.
He was for several years a Warden at Skelton Church.

4th April - SKELTON DRIVER PAYS FOR OVERTAKING ERROR.
Supt A Bean described it more as an error of judgement rather than careless driving, but Stanley Ridgard, of 97 High St, Skelton was fined 1 and costs at South Bank Court today, when he appeared on a charge of driving without dure care and attention.
When driving from Grangetown towards Redcar, Ridgard overtook the car in front and collided with another car driven by Lance Bombardier E Brown. He pleaded guilty.

5th April - SKELTON AND BROTTON RATES REDUCED.
The rates for Skelton, Stanghow, Brotton, Kilton and Moorsholm were reduced, which considering the higher cost of materials and wages, is very creditable.
Secondly each married council employee who was called up would now receive the difference between his Army pay and civil pay, less 15 shillings, as a moderate estimate of his maintenance cost in the Services.

6th April - HOLLYBUSH FARM AUCTION.
At the Buck Hotel, Guisborough yesterday the freehold farm was put up for auction.
The bidding did not reach the reserve price and at 2,800 the property was withdrawn and negotiations for a sale are still proceeding.

6th April - BRITISH LEGION KNITTERS.
Members of the women's section of the Brotton and North Skelton branch of the British Legion have knitted and despatched 2 articles to each of the men enlisted in the Forces from Brotton, North Skelton, Saltburn Lane and Hollybush Estate.

9th April - GERMANY INVADED DENMARK AND NORWAY.

16th April - NEW TENANT AT HOME FARM SKELTON.
Mr John Bell of Airey Hill Farm will take over Home Farm, Skelton, formerly farmed by the executors of Col W H Wharton and Mr T G Bell will farm Airey Hill.

19th April - NORTH SKELTON CRICKET.
Mr C May presided at the AGM of the Club last night and reported a credit balance of 3.
It was decided to compete in the West Cleveland League. Mr S Goodill was elected
Captain. Mr I Paley, vice Captain.
The Rev J H Molyneaux was Chairman and Mr C May Treasurer and Secretary.

26th April - AIR RAID PRECAUTION EXERCISE WENT WELL.
The local ARP services held a satisfactory exercise at Skelton Castle, Carlin How and Brotton last night.
Services taking part included the Skelton and Brotton Fire Brigade, Supt A R Cranmer in command.
Brotton and North Skelton Voluntary First Aid Company, the Rev J Molyneaux leader, Ambulance parties, Police and Special Constables.
Assistance was given by Dr C R Gibson, Cleveland's Medical Officer.
Mr H C J Taylor represented the County Council and Sgt Blakey, the N Riding Chief Constable, Colonel Chaytor.

30th April - SKELTON DRUNKS BLACKED OUT.
When William Hume, aged 58, of Zetland Rd, Skinningrove was charged at Guisborough today with being drunk and disorderly at North Skelton, he said -
"I can only plead the black-out".
According to the evidence said Mr H Dales, the Chairman of the Bench, you were "completely blacked out inside" - and fined him 5 shillings [25p]
At the same court Alexander Pirie, a young soldier, aged 18, was also charged with the same offence at North Skelton and refusing to quit licensed premises when requested.
Fined 10 shillings.

3rd May - TWO NORTH SKELTON CRICKET TEAMS.
North Skelton Mines will meet Skelton Castle with a team chosen from -
H Smurthwaite [capt], W Gosling, G Sayer, J Gibson, S Tremain, H Wrighley, J Bolton, W Suscens, W Lynas, T Stevenson, S Turner, G Hudgill, E Prout.
North Skelton C C will play New Marske with the following -
S Goodill, I Paley, C May, K Forbes, W Stephens, W Boothby, F Thompson, R Turnbull, M Butler, Rev J H Molyneaux, A Ellingham.

3rd May - MALE PERSONNEL MUST WORK 72 HOURS PER WEEK
At the Council meeting it was suggested that Councillors should return their minute papers as a contribution to the Government's paper saving scheme.
The Clerk said 600 sheets of foolscap were used each month.
The hon ARP Officer said that there were difficulties at the Report Centre, owing to the new Home Office ruling that all male personnel must work 72 hours per week.
2 of the 3 controllers had objected and resigned.
It was not possible for volunteers to cope and a new controller had been engaged.
3 women telephonists had been appointed in place of a male who had resigned.
It was stated that free domestic air raid shelters were now provided for the part of Carlin How in the Skelton area.

5th May - NORTH SKELTON INSTITUTE.
At the AGM a credit balance of 16 1 6d was reported. The following officers were elected. Secretary Mr E W Templeman. Treasurer Mr G Mogridge. Committee, J W Vasey, G Gosling, J Jackson, C Jackson, R Jackson, H Priatt, A H Carver, T Hunter, F Hugill, A Johnson. Auditors A H Carver and J T Hunter.

7th May - EAST CLEVELAND TENNIS.
The AGM of the East Cleveland Tennis League was held at Skelton where representatives of the Skelton, Brotton, Carlin How and Saltburn clubs met.
Carlin How had won the League and Guisborough the Morris Challenge Cup. It was agreed to run both competitions again.

10th May - GERMAN ARMY INVADED FRANCE, BELGIUM, LUXEMBOURG AND HOLLAND.
Winston Churchill formed an All-party, War Coalition Government

10th May - MINERS WORK WHIT MONDAY FOR WAR EFFORT.
Whit Monday was a recognised holiday in the Cleveland mining industry, but as an emergency war measure the owners offered the miners and datal hands an extra 5 shillings on piece rates and datal wages if they would work as normal, on condition that the whole of the week was worked.
Those under 18 to get 2s 6d. It was stated that the offer was accepted by all the Dorman Long mines and it was expected the men at Pease and Partners mines would fall into line.
11th May - WAR STOPS WEDDING.
The wedding arranged to take place at Boosbeck Parish Church this afternoon between Miss Irene Fawcett of Charltons Terrace and Mr Richard W Richardson of Skelton Green has had to be postponed as the groom is a member of the RAF and has been unable to obtain leave.

13th May - MINE DEATH OF SHOT FIRER.
Samuel Sage, aged 50, a married man of Ruby St, Saltburn and a shot-firer at North Skelton Mines received fatal injuries while at work on Saturday.
His body was conveyed to Brotton Hospital.


14th May - RADIO APPEAL FOR LOCAL DEFENCE VOLUNTEERS.
The Foreign Secretary, Anthony Eden, made a radio appeal for men to become Local Defence Volunteers.
These volunteers should be aged between 40 and 60 and be able to fire a gun.
By the end of June one and a half million men had been enlisted.
At first they wore only an armband for recognition and only a few could be issued with old War One, Lee Enfield rifles.
After Dunkirk, thousands of these Home Guards were readied along the coasts for an expected invasion.
They were not the old men of "Dads Army" and in this area many were young men who worked in the vital occupations of ironstone miner and steelworker.
"I went down to Middlesbrough twice during the War to enlist in the Army," says one, who was 18 at the time,
"but they sent me back home and told me my job down the pit was just as important."

14th May - SKELTON WOMEN'S INSTITUTE WARTIME COOKERY.
Capt Eshley Smith gave a talk on his journey across the Himalaya.
Mrs Kirkpatrick presided. [She was the wife of local doctor, W A Kirkpatrick, who died at a young age after the War.]
A collection of eggs was made and 200 were to be divided between the Chaloner and Joint Isolation Hospital at Guisborough and the Brotton Hospital.
Mrs Kirkpatrick urged all women to attend the war-time cookery lectures to commence at the Stanghow Lane Schools on Tuesday May 21st.

15th May - HOLLAND CAPITULATED.

16th May - SKELTON FIRST AID AWARDS.
A large number of people, members of the Skelton and Brotton Voluntary First Aid Association attended the Church Hall, North Skelton last night to receive their awards for passing their examinations.
Mr T E Slater, the local mine manager made the presentation. The Rev R W Wheatley presided, assisted by Rev J R Molyneaux.
Dr E J Burnett was the examiner and Drs W A Kirkpatrick and W Stephenson, the lecturers.

16th May - NORTH SKELTON HUSBAND KILLED IN ACTION.
News has been officially received by Mrs Eliza Elizabeth Overton of Bolckow St, North Skelton that her husband 815338, Lance Bombardier, Ernest Ovington, aged 27, was killed in action on the 13th May.
He was employed at Dormanstown Works. His wife is the daughter of Mr and Mrs G Porte of North Skelton.
Ernest was serving with the 17th Field Regt of the Royal Artillery and must have met the first wave of Hitler's blitzkrieg, as he is buried at the War Cemetery in Choloy, a village 28k to the West of Nancy and 5 West of Toul.
He was the son of Alfred Ernest and Elizabeth Ann Overton, whose home address is not known.
His name does not appear on the Skelton War Memorial.

16th May - SKELTON NURSING.
At the AGM of the Skelton and District Nursing Association the balance in hand was 78 7s 10d against 180 at the beginning of the year.
Nurse Winters had paid 2,899 visits and Nurse Wardhaugh 2,534.
[I know that Nurse Winter attended my own home birth at East Parade, Skelton on 1st October of this year.]
Officials elected were Margaret Ringrose Wharton, President. Rev R W Wheatley, Chairman. Miss L Winter, hon secretary and Mr W W Kingston, treasurer.

21st May - BRITISH ARMY TRAPPED.
The British Expeditionary Force were compelled to retreat by Hitler's tank and plane blitzkrieg to the Northern coast of France and Belgium. It seemed as though they would all be killed or captured.
For some reason on the 22nd the German High Command, with Hitler's approval ordered a halt, which gave the Allies time to fight a defensive action and pull back to the nearest reasonable sized port, Dunkirk.

28th May - BELGIUM CAPITULATED.

28th May to 4th June. MIRACLE OF DUNKIRK.

338,226 men were rescued during this period and ferried back home, but a great many British had been killed or taken prisoner since the German invasion of France.
including the following 6 Skelton lads.

4386349 SERGEANT PERCY RAYNER.
He died in hospital in England on the 31st May from wounds received in action, aged 29.
He had been in the local 4th Battalion of the Green Howards Territorials for some years and before the War was employed at the Lumpsey Mines, Brotton.
He lived at 9 Milbank St, Skelton and left a widow, Elsie May, and a daughter, aged 2.
Sgt William Calvert Danby.

He was the son of the late County Councillor Robert Rayner and Phoebe E Raynor of Boosbeck.
He is buried in Skelton Cemetery.
Click to see his memorial.

4386274 L/CPL SYDNEY COLIN BROWN.
4th Battalion, Green Howards.
Age: 31. Date of Death: between 29 May and 2nd June.
Son of James and Carrie Brown; husband of Nancy Brown, of Skelton, Saltburn, Yorkshire.
Memorial Reference Column 49, Dunkirk Memorial.
Click here to see his memorial.
53786 SERGEANT WILLIAM CALVERT DANBY.
5th Battalion, Green Howards
Age: 37. Date of Death: 31st May.
CSM Robert Shaw.

Husband of Ethel Danby of 153 High St, Skelton.
Memorial Sp.Mem. FF. 5. Adinkerke Military Cemetery, Belgium.
Click here to see his memorial.

4386726 COMPANY SERGEANT MAJOR ROBERT SHAW.
4th Battalion, Green Howards.
Age: 28. Date of Death: between 14 May and 17 June.
Son of Walter and Elizabeth Shaw; husband of Ethel Shaw, of Skelton, Yorkshire.
Grave Plot 2. Row A. Grave 11. Athies Communal Cemetery Extension.
Click here to see his memorial.
4390693 PTE HAROLD SMITH.
4th Battalion, Green Howards.
Pte Harold Smith.

Age only 18. Missing in action between 23rd May and 2nd June.
Son of John and Dora Smith of East Parade, Skelton.
/Memorial Reference: Memorial: Plot 2. Row B. Grave 7, Athies Communal Cemetery Extension.
Click here to see his memorial.
4387164 PTE JOHN WILLIAM WALKER.
4th Battalion, Green Howards.
Age: 26. Date of Death: 23rd May.
Son of Edward Thomas Walker and Florence Walker; husband of Mona Walker, of Skelton Green, Yorkshire.
Memorial Column 50, Dunkirk Memorial.
Click here to see his memorial.
Many lads returned home wounded. Alan Ward remembers Arthur Sleeman and Bill Abrams of Robinson St, Skelton.
Arthur appeared to recover, but Bill was an invalid for life.


10th June - ITALY DECLARES WAR.
Norway capitulated. Italy declared war on Britain and France.

14th June - FRANCE SURRENDERS.
The Germans took control of Paris and on the 22nd June France capitulated.

18th June - MAGISTRATES WARN ABOUT BLACK OUT OFFENCES.
The Chairman of the Guisborough Bench expressed thanks for the way in which the Air Raid Protection wardens were carrying out their duty and co-operating with the Police.
A number of people were charged with lighting offences, including William E Todd of 49 High St Skelton [house lights].
They were fined 15 shillings each and a warning given that fines would be more severe in future.

25th June - WAR BREAKS OUT IN HOLLYBUSH, SKELTON.
"There is enough War in the World", the Chairman of Guisborough Magistrates told 2 Hollybush, Skelton residents, when they appeared before him today on cross-summonses for Assault.
Ivan Paley, aged 31, civil servant of 40 Hollybush and Edward D Drinkhall, aged 54, of 2 Hollybush were both bound over in the sum of 10 for 12 months and Paley was ordered to pay 10s for using obscene language. Paley came with a Rugby tackle and threw him down.
Mrs Drinkhall admitted that her husband gave Paley a sharp uppercut in self defence.
Paley said that he received a blow on the jaw that required stitching and denied using obscene language.

25th June - SON MISSING.
Mr and Mrs W Small of Harker St, Skelton have received news that their son, Rifleman J Small is missing.

2nd July - DISGRACEFUL SKELTON DRUNKS.
Mr Petch, the chairman of Guisborough Magistrates told John Pratt of Groundhills, Skelton and Welburn of High St, Skelton that it was a disgrace to be drunk and disorderly on a Sunday.
They were both fined 10 shillings.
Inspector Stephenson said that on Sunday night the two were drunk and creating a disturbance. They were taken into custody by Sgt Broadley and Constable Allen.
The Constable received a severe blow from Pratt, who said that they were acting peacefully until the Police ordered them to move on and he put up his hands to defend himself.

2nd July - EXPENSIVE ILLUMINATIONS.
When the ARP warden passed the house of Robert Lightwing, aged 52, of High St, Skelton, which, it was said, faced the sea, they found a light on and no black out or curtains had been drawn.
He told the magistrates that he had switched on the light unthinkingly. It cost him a 2 fine.


Robert [Rob] Bannister, Centre, in German POW Camp.
Right is Jock Pierson of Lingdale, N Yorks. Left is E W Horner/Harmer of Loftus.

5th July - SON REPORTED MISSING.

He had been killed in action on the 23rd May, his body never found and is commemorated on the Dunkirk Memorial. See 28th May above.

6th July - NEW HEADMISTRESS AND SCHOOL PAY.
Miss Laura B Ramsay was appointed headmistress of North Skelton Junior Mixed and Infants Council School as of September 1st at a salary of 315 per annum.
She will replace Miss V Wilks who is retiring after 43 years in the profession. Since 1920 she has been secretary of the Skelton Welfare Centre.

8th July - ONE SON MISSING AND ONE SAFE.
Mrs Templeman of Holmbeck Rd, North Skelton, has received news that her son, Pte George A Templeman of the Green Howards is missing.
Another son, Pte W A Templeman, returned safely from Dunkirk.

10th July - BATTLE OF BRITAIN STARTS.

12th July - CONSCIENTIOUS OBJECTORS TRIBUNAL.
Anyone who objected to being called up for Military Service had to appear before a Tribunal at Newcastle to explain why.
Leslie Nicholson, aged 28, of Skelton Rd, Brotton was registered as one, on condition that he does forestry or land work.
Joseph A Scuffham.

He was told by Judge Richardson that a man in the armed forces fighting the war as a holy crusade was
"ten million times a better Christian than cowards like you are."
Nicholson went on to run a furniture shop in Brotton High St after the War, while the widows of the lads who had died struggled to bring up their families on a meagre pension.

15th July - MINER BADLY BURNT.
Clyde Elliott, aged 44, of Oxford St, Boosbeck was admitted to the Chaloner Hospital, Gusiborough on Saturday suffering from shock and burns, received in the North Skelton Mines.

16th July - PRISONERS OF WAR.
Mr and Mrs J McKensie of High St, Skelton, received official news yesterday that their son, L/Cpl John B McKenzie of the Green Howards, is now a prisoner of war.
Mrs Bannister of North Tce, Skelton also heard that her husband, Cpl R B Bannister of the Green Howards, who had been reported missing last month, was now a POW.
See the brilliant greetings cards that he sent back home from a prison camp in Poland over the next 4 years - here.
Mrs Abram of Robinson St, Skelton also received news that her husband, Cpl W E Abram, was a POW.
Mr and Mrs W Scuffham of 40 Harker St, Skelton Green have heard that their son, Pte W C Scuffham, is a POW.
Their other son, Pte Joseph A Scuffham, of the same Regiment, a dispatch rider, is officially reported missing. He is included in the awards of the Military Medal. He was a well known violinist with a local dance orchestra.
16th July - SCRAP TO HELP WAR EFFORT.
Cleveland is taking an active part in the nation's campaign for scrap and excellent results have already been achieved.
A system of village dumps is being inaugurated and promises to yield a large amount from outlying hamlets.
Collections of scrap metals at Loftus, Skelton and Brotton show the residents are responding magnificently to the national call.

20th July - MINE DEATH.
John Whittaker, aged 47, who was employed at the Long Acre Mine, Skelton died in the Guisborough Chaloner Hospital yesterday.
He was admitted with injuries received at work. The inquest opened last night and is adjourned until next week.

23rd July - HUSBAND REPORTED MISSING, ALREADY DEAD.
Mrs Shaw of Harker St, Skelton Green has received news that her husband, Company Sergeant Major R Shaw of the Green Howards, is missing and believed to be a prisoner of War.
He was a well known local sportsman playing for Skelton Athletic in the Cleveland League and Priestcrofts cricket team.
In fact he had been killed in action probably early in the German advance across France, as he is buried in the extension to the communal cemetery of Athies, which is a French village, 5 kilometres to the East of Arras. See 28th May.

3rd August - SKELTON NURSING IN THE RED.
The Rev R W Wheatley presided at a public meeting held at Skelton last night regarding the Skelton Nursing Association.
The balance at the end of 1939 was now used up. The salaries and affiliation fees of the 2 nurses would be 485 15s 3d, while the anticipated income was just 344 0s 7d.
It was decided that Rev Wheatley and Mrs Ringrose Wharton seek an interview with the N Riding Health Committee to inquire if some further assistance could be given.

6th August - DRUNK AT BUS STOP FELL TO FLOOR.
Harry Readman, aged 23, of Front Row, Carlin How was fined 1 for being drunk and disorderly at Skelton.
Sgt Broadley and Constable Warriner said that he was using bad language at the bus stand and when they took hold of him he fell to the floor.

Beatrice Scollen.

12th August - NORTH SKELTON WOMAN WIDOWED TWICE BY MINE ACCIDENTS.
STABBED TO DEATH.
THIRD HUSBAND HANGED ON CHRISTMAS EVE IN DURHAM JAIL.
On this day Beatrice Barbara Scollen [nee Bunney] was stabbed in the "back arches", which is what the locals called the back street, of Milton St, Middlesbrough.
She had been born in Loftus, N Yorks in 1904.
Her parents were from Cornwall and had come to this area in the previous year to find work in the Ironstone Mines.
The family lived at 42 Hartington St, Loftus and already had 6 older children born in Cornwall.
According to evidence given by her brother, John, who was 14 years older than her, Beatrice's first two husbands, John "Jack" Young and
Ralph Brown, were both killed in accidents at North Skelton Mine,
Other evidence showed that she was receiving or was about to receive compensation for these losses.
I have not, as yet, been able to find reports of these accidents, but census details, which have been researched by Owen Rooks, [a native Skeltoner, now living in Sunderland], show that Beatrice married John R Young, born Moorsholm, at Guisborough in 1923, when she was aged 19 and he was 22.
In the following year she had a son, Leonard Young.
In 1935 John Young was buried in New Skelton Cemetery, although his death was registered in Middlesbrough, which could possibly indicate that he died in hospital there.
In the first quarter of 1936 Beatrice gave birth to William R Brown and in the third quarter of that year she married Ralph Brown at Guisborough.
Ralph was a year or so younger than her and at the 1911 census was living at 17 William St, North Skelton.
A good indication of local housing conditions back then is that his father had added to the Census form - "There are 4 rooms in the house, but we have only one of them."
In the last quarter of 1936 Ralph Brown's death is recorded.
In the second quarter of 1937 Beatrice had a second son by Ralph Brown and called him after his father.
On 11th May 1938 she married for a third time, Edward Scollen, at Guisborough.
He was a labourer, who had been born in Seaham, Co Durham but grew up in Houghton Le Spring, Co Durham. He had 4 children of his own from a previous marriage.
Beatrice and Scollen first lived in North Skelton, then Guisborough and ended up in 3 rooms at 58 St Paul's Rd Middlesbrough.
It appears the marriage was not an entirely happy one.
Beatrice had left him in 1939 and went back to North Skelton for a time. In July 1940 she left him again and went to live in rooms at Upper Milbank St, South Bank.
On the 12th August Scollen had 7 or 8 pints of beer between noon and 2 p.m.
He clocked on at work, decided that he had had too much to drink and went back home, having another pint and a half on the way.
He sent his 13 year old son to the house of Beatrice's brother to find out if she was there.
This was 5 Milton St, which was only 2 or 3 minutes walk from 58 St Paul's Rd.
The lad was told that she was not there, but he heard her talking.
On learning this, Scollen decided to go out in the hope of meeting her.
Beatrice went out shopping with her sister in law, Ada Bunney, and another woman. They met Scollen in the back street.
A witness said that she heard the high words of a quarrel.
Scollen pulled a penknife out of his coat and asked Beatrice if she was coming home with him.
She said - "No Ted, I am not, you look after your children and I will look after mine."
Scollen struck his wife 3 blows and then took her by the shoulder and dragged her for some distance back towards the back arch between Fleetham and Church St.
She fell to the ground bleeding. Scollen told his son to stay with his step-mother and ran off.
Assistance was given to Beatrice at the spot and an ambulance was telephoned for, but she was dead on arrival at the North Riding Infirmary.
The stab wound to her breast had pierced her lung and heart.
The police began inquiries immediately and were directed by the young lad to Scollen's home.
The officers heard a gurgling sound and could not open the door to the front room, as there was something behind it.
They forced the door and found Scollen hanging by a cord and bleeding from wounds to his wrists.
He was taken to the Holgate Hospital with a deep wound to his throat, from which he recovered.
Mrs Ada Bunney gave evidence to the Court that when Beatrice had left Scollen in July, he had said if she would not live with him, she would not live with anyone else.
The 42 year old Scollen was sent for trial at York Assizes, where on the 11th November he was found guilty of murder.
Mr Justice Cassels sentenced him to death.
Despite an appeal and a petition in his home village, he was hanged by Albert Pierrepoint in Durham prison on the 24th December 1940.

13th Aug - GERMAN BOMBING.
Luftwaffe began raids on British airfields and aircraft factories.

16th August - MISSING AND POW.
Mrs Smith of Robinson St, Skelton has received notice that her son, Pte Harry Smith, of the Seaforth Highlanders is missing.
Mr and Mrs A Ward of 12 Yeoman St, Skelton, had been informed that their son, Pte Albert Henry Ward of the Green Howards was missing and have now received a letter card from him stating that he is safe and well and a prisoner in Germany.
Mrs Vaughan of Thomas St, New Skelton has also received notice that her son, Pte John Arkley Vaughan, Green Howards is also a POW.

21st August - BIKE CRASH.
A Skelton errand lad, Hubert A C Videan, aged 14, of Prospect Place was cycling down Green Bank yesterday when his machine got out of control and he collided with sandbags outside the Fire Station.
He was treated for abrasions to his forehead and later removed to Guisborough Hospital suffering from suspected internal injuries.

25th Aug - RAF FIGHT BACK.
The Royal Air Force mounted a reprisal raid against Berlin.

William "Tiger" Flower.


27th August - 1871533 CPL WILLIAM "TIGER" FLOWER KILLED IN N AFRICA.
Age 27. He was serving with 42 Field Coy, Royal Engineers.
Mr William Edward and Margaret Elizabeth Flower, of Harker St, Skelton Green, received news that their son, William, had been killed in an accident in Egypt.
He had been in the Service for five and a half years.
He was well known in boxing circles, having fought many fights in Middlesbrough, Guisborough, Redcar etc and known as "Tiger" Flowers.
He is buried in Grave: XXX. J. 25, El Alamein War Cemetery. Click here to see his memorial.
3rd September - SOLDIER SHOT DEAD AT SKELTON PARK RANGE.
The acting Coroner for Cleveland, Mr Bernard Wilkinson returned a verdict of accidental death on Gunner Ronald Bryant, aged 21, of Aberanam, Aberdare, S Wales.
Gunner William M Robins, age 19, said that on Sunday, he saw Bryant tampering with a revolver near a car.
"He must have taken the revolver out of the car. I told him to put it down, but he would not. I snatched it out of his hand. It went off by mishap." said Robins, who added that he did not know that it was loaded.
Capt Edward B Wyld, of the Home Guard, whose car it was, was closely questioned as to why he should keep a loaded weapon in the vehicle.
6th September - LOCAL SPITFIRE FUND.
Skelton and Brotton Council decided to issue an appeal to the public of the area to support a Spitfire Fund.
All over Britain the idea of contributing to buying one of the super aircraft to fight the Germans caught on and some 13 million was raised.

7th Sept - Italian Army attacked Egypt.

10th September - SKELTON MILK SCHEME.
More than 600 applications have been made in the Skelton and Brotton area under the Government Milk Scheme.
Mr J Watson, the Milk Officer, now has an office in Skelton High St. Many remain to take advantage.
The importance of milk in the diet was recognised and although the retail cost was 4d per pint, a scheme was introduced so that nursing mothers and children could be registered to buy it at 2d per pint and people who could not afford even that could get it for free.
13th September - TWO SKELTON MINERS INJURED.
Charles Raynor, aged 44, of East Parade, Skelton, was admitted to the Guisborough Hospital yesterday with injuries received in South Skelton Mine.
On the same day, Arthur Hart, age 26, of High St, Moorsholm, was admitted to the same hospital with an ankle injury received in the North Skelton Mine.
16th September - PRISONER OF WAR.
Mr and Mrs Small of Harker St, Skelton Green have received news that their son, Rifleman J Small, who had previously been reported missing, is a POW.

16th September - WAR DID NOT STOP FLOWERS.
The Annual show of flowers and vegetables held on Saturday at the Skelton and District Workmen's Club attracted 180 entries.

16th September - ANOTHER MINER INJURED.
John Buxton, age 61, of 11 Hollybush, Skelton was admitted to the Chaloner Hospital, Guisborough, yesterday with foot injuries received in the Longacre Mine.

18th September - LAST CO-OP APPRENTICE.
Mr H Penrose, who has been the manager of Skelton Co-op Society for the last 6 years is leaving to take up a new position in Cheshire.
A native of Saltburn, he was the last bound apprentice of Skelton Co-op and is a member of the war time Skelton and Brotton Food Control Committee.

19th September - SKELTON'S "COUNTRY FAYRE".
Mrs Ringrose Wharton opened the Country Fayre at the Wharton Hall, Skelton yesterday, the Rev R W Wheatley presiding. The effort was in aid of the Parish Church and a large number of people were stall-holders and tea servers.
Mr Henry Brack of High St, Skelton was admitted to the Chaloner Hospital, Guisborough yesterday suffering from head injuries received in an accident at the Lingdale Mines.

4th October - AIR RAID SHELTERS TO BE ERECTED.
At the monthly meeting of Skelton and Brotton Council an increase of 4 pence on the rates was announced. At Skelton they are now 6s 3d in the pound.
Part of the increase is due to the erection of Air Raid Shelters. A Government representative recently visited the area and recommended shelters at Brotton, North Skelton, New Skelton and Lingdale.
There will be accommodation for 3,552 persons in 99 shelters at a cost of 5,400.
Grants of 4,630 and 385 will be made by the Government and County Council, leaving 385 to be found from the local rates.
It was decided to invite tenders for the work.
Application for the supply of electricity for the lighting of private air raid shelters were granted.

8th October - DRUNK ON THE WHITE LINE.
Joseph W Sanderson, aged 63, of Green Road, Skelton was fined 10 shillings at the Guisborough Magistrates Court for being drunk and incapable.
Constable Allen said that he found Sanderson lying in the middle of the road and a motor vehicle just missed him.

11th October - SPITFIRE FUND.
A flag day at North Skelton and Brotton, organised by the local branch of the British Legion women's section produced about 8 for the Spitfire Fund.

21st October - MINER INJURED.
Mr W Waller of Oxford St, Boosbeck was unable to attend his son's wedding on Saturday because he was brought home with a broken toe, sustained while working at the North Skelton Mine. He is a well known local preacher.
22nd October - CLEVELAND MINERS TO BE ENTERTAINED.
Arranged by ENSA [Entertainments National Service Association set up in 1939 for service personnel] and the Ministry of Labour, a show will be given tonight at North Skelton Institute and similar entertainments will be given at other venues in the area for the miners.

29th October - CYCLING SPEEDSTER FINED.
Harry Laing Taylor, aged 25, of Skelton Green was fined 5 shillings today at the Guisborough Police Court for riding a cycle to the common danger.
Constable Warriner said that he saw Taylor riding down a bank at a fast speed and his machine struck the bumper of a car at the bottom.

29th October - SKELTON A "DEFENCE AREA"
Percy Binns of Shiply was fined 10 shillings at Guisborough Police Court for entering the defence area while not on business.
Sgt Broadley stated that he saw Binns get off the bus at Skelton and when asked what he was doing in the district he replied - "I didn't know I had to have permission".
He stayed 2 days after the offence and he gave the Court the same excuse.
Supt Bywater told the Court that it was well known that Cleveland was a defence area, but people were coming in to attend pictures and sports without the slightest pretence of business.

30th October - SHOOTING AT THE BOARD IN WARTIME.
At a meeting at Skelton last night it was decided to form a Skelton and Brotton licensed victuallers Darts League.
16 representatives were present. Rules were made and a further meeting will be held on Tuesday to arrange fixtures.

7th November - JUMBLE FOR SPITFIRES.
Mrs W A Kirkpatrick, the president of Skelton Women's Institute has handed the Skelton and Brotton Spitfire Fund 43 3s, the proceeds of 2 Jumble Sales.

10th November - Royal Air Force raid crippled the Italian fleet at Taranto.

13th November - SAVING FOR THE WAR EFFORT.
6 National Savings Groups are now established in the Skelton area and during September and October a total of 1,134 9s 3d was saved. The last group to be formed at North Skelton in one month saved 298 14s and in the same period Skelton Green saved 655 3s.

16th November - BIKE DEATH ON APPLE ORCHARD BANK.
Thomas Robinson, age 36, of Dixon St, Skelton died at his home yesterday after a fatal fall from his bicycle on Apple Orchard Bank.
The Coroner recorded a verdict of death by misadventure, the cause being a fracture at the base of the skull.
William Dunning, a workmate, said that Robinson overtook him returning from work near the Upleatham cross road. They cycled down the bank together, but separated as they approached the sharp bend.
Dunning told the inquest - "He developed a wobble and seemed to lose control. He was thrown over the handlebars and landed on his feet, but immediately fell and rolled over 3 or 4 times. There was no obstruction on the road."
His wife Alma gave birth the same year to a son, Colin.
18th November - NORTH SKELTON MINE DEATH.
Mr H Smith, a married man of Auckland St, Guisborough received fatal injuries while working on the Back shift at North Skelton Mine on Saturday. He was a well known local billiards player.

19th November - RAN SKELTON BUSINESS FOR 60 YEARS.
The death occurred yesterday of Mrs Annie Dowson, aged 79, of 151 High St, Skelton. She was the widow of Mr Thomas Dowson and had been in business in Skelton for 60 years.
One of her sons is Mr Gordon Dowson, a North Skelton shop-keeper.


Animal transporter, John Bell of Home Farm, Skelton in Cleveland.
Photograph kindly contributed by John Robson, old Skeltoner, of Burscough, Lancs.

18th December - EVACUEES.
Miss Bowman, an evacuee elementary school teacher from Gateshead at North Skelton, entertained her evacuee scholars to tea and a variety programme in the Church Hall.

19th December - DO NOT WALK THE WHITE LINE IN THE BLACK-OUT.
The Cleveland Coroner issued this warning to pedestrians at the inquest into the death of a 68 year old man, John Thomas of Bolckow St, North Skelton.
He died in Brotton Hospital on December 13th after being knocked down by a car at North Skelton on the night of November 30th.
Walter W Walshaw of Handale Farm, Loftus said that he was driving from Brotton to New Skelton.
"I had just got past the Workmen's Club at North Skelton, when I saw a figure in front of me, which appeared to stagger in front of the car.
I applied the brakes and swung further to my own side of the road, but hit him with my offside bumber."
Verdict - laceration of the brain as result of motor accident.

21st December - HOME FARM BARN BURNT OUT.
Skelton Fire Brigade were called yesterday to Home Farm, Skelton by Mr John Bell, the tenant, where they found the fully laden Dutch barn ablaze.
They were able to save the adjoining premises, but the contents of the barn were destroyed. The cause is not known.

21st December - MINER BADLY INJURED.
Jack Carthew, married of 7 Margrove Park was admitted to the Chaloner Hospital, Guisborough, late last night suffering from severe leg injuries received in the Skelton Mine.

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