Steelworks sets up coal club for its workforce

Soon after the Second World War the idea of a works coal club were mooted, the steelworks already ran various other clubs for it’s employees including, athletics, golf, football, hockey, netball, swimming, chess, cine photography, motors and others.

The Scunthorpe Co-op Society had and was delivering coal previously for some years prior to the Second World War and there were local coal merchants doing the same, but behind this paternalistic gesture to create a works coal club was the motive that any incentive to keep a workforce in town and working long term at the works, was required. 

Coal Club Lorries

Coal Club Lorries

A fleet of coal delivery lorries were therefore commandeered to tap into the many thousand of employees in the area. The picture shows three unknown makes of lorries with staff suitably posed for the photographer on the works.

The secretary of the coal club was N Varty and the club came under the umbrella of the United Steel Company. It had the ability to bulk purchase affordable cheaper coal for the coal club members.

The Clean Air Act came along in 1956 banning the household combustion of coal in selected urban areas encouraging the use of smokeless fuels. The 1970s saw many houses converting to North Sea gas for their heating as well as cooking.

The works coal club ran, in one form or another, for over 50 years before membership had dwindled away.

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