- 10THE HARWORTH LIFT
As with all good fairy tales, I shall begin the story with "Once upon a Time", there was a great big heap of dirty heavy, rusty and greasy metal. This was that was to become the magnificent addition that we now have on Our Organ installation. The story begins all of three years ago when Stan Morris saw a lift advertised in an organ journal. He approached Mr Grainger at the Welfare for the necessary finances, and eventually journeyed down to London with my late brother Ken driving the van to collect it. The lift made a very inconspicuous entry into Harworth, going straight into store in the timber shed behind the Colliery Joiners shop. There it remained until the late summer of '77. My foreman decided that we would have a clear out in the timber shed, whereupon the virtually forgotten lift came to light. Its next temporary resting place was to be in the disused Canary breeding shed at the colliery, until I could negotiate with Mr. Burgess (The Manager) a place at the Colliery big enough to attempt the job of building it. I found Mr Burgess very sympathetic to my request and was told we could use the old pit pony stables, therefore another temporary resting place. By this time it was getting to the stage of "Have Lift will travel", and it was also getting rather cold at night so it was with some apprehension that a team of our committee men began the task of rebuilding. I must say, we are really very proud of ourselves when we think, that our only source of light was provided by two hand lamps and our only power tool was a ten year old "Wolf Drill". These were coupled into the garage electric supply by means of two extension leads run across the yard. As I have said the nights were cold, but there was a very warm team spirit to keep us cheerful. We had some good laughs in that stable during the four or five weeks we were there. More so, looking back, when you think of some of the things that were said about the metal. If you think of a length of 2x2 angle iron, a drive chain, or possibly a nut and bolt, all described at sometime in the job as having a 'mother and father with doubtful marriage lines", you will see what I mean. However, with all the trials and tribulations, we eventually sorted it all out, made a completely new framework for the organ to stand on shortened the job down from 11 feet to 9 feet, and after checking and re-checking measurements between the stables and the stage of the Welfare Hall, we shortened the corner posts of the lift. We were then ready for what turned out to be the most frustrating few days of the whole job. Waiting to see if the Welfare Committee would give permission to install it. I am sure you can imagine, it would have been nothing short of disaster if they had refused.
January 1978 edition of Golden Notes