Mapperley Village

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Newspapers - 1920s

Nottingham Evening Post
Monday 25 June 1923


A remarkable story of a rejected suitor's dangerous attack on the father of his fiancée was unfolded at the Notts. Assizes to-day, when Albert Eric Pleming. 23, a student, was indicted for wounding William Edward Sargent with intent to do him grievous bodily harm, at Mapperley, April 28th.   Dr. Lindley (instructed by Mr A. Heane) prosecuted, and Mr. Norman defended.

Prisoner pleaded guilty to unlawful wounding, denying "intent," and this plea was accepted.

Dr. Lindley said prisoner had been engaged to prosecutor's daughter for eight or nine months, but there had been a little quarrel, and they parted. About April 20th he wrote a letter to the girl, asking her definitely whether she had given him up. To this she did not reply.  On the 28th he called and asked to see Miss Bertha Sargent, but was told by her sister that she was out, and did not want to see him again. This seemed to have preyed his mind, for after the family had retired to rest, prisoner turned up about half past, eleven, placed some steps against a window, and entered the house. Going upstairs, he went to room in which Mr. Sargent was sleeping, and while the latter was in bed, jumped on the bed and apparently tried to strangle him. They fell to the floor, and while that was going on, prisoner cut Mr. Sargent three or four times with a knife about the hands and face.

In response to Mr. Sargent's call for help Mrs. Sargent and Bertha ran into the room, turned up the gas and found prisoner on top of Mr. Sargent. Then he went into the drawing-room with Bertha, and remained there until Mrs. Sargent came, making no attempt to escape. It was then noticed that had no boots on. When the police arrived he said he was sorry, and could not account for it.

Dr. James Watson, medical officer at Bagthorpe Gaol, described prisoner's mental condition as normal.


Mr. Birkett, speaking on prisoner's behalf, said he was the son of the vicar of Mapperley, Derbyshire, and had hitherto borne excellent character. At the age of 16 entered into the service of a bank, and, 17, enlisted as a wireless operator on a destroyer. During the time he was in the navy his character was of the highest, but the hours spent in the darkness of a submarine affected his nervous system, and after being demobilised he entered a home of rest at Chatham, where he was delirious for 14 days. Since then he had suffered from nervous instability, though perfectly' sane.

The explanation of this extremely strange affair, continued counsel, was that he did not know what he was doing. His affection for the girl was deep and lasting, but he felt the estrangement most acutely. It might be thought that he entered the house, thinking he was going to the girl s room, but this theory was discounted by the fact that he must have known as soon as he began to struggle with Mr. Sargent that had hold of a man.

The judge remarked that the whole thing appeared to be inexplicable.

Dr. Tobin of Ilkeston bore out counsel's statement as to prisoner's nervous condition. The Rev. John Fleming, vicar of Mapperley, said that since the war his boy did not seem to have been the same. Witness added that when heard of his son's fondness for the girl he went to the Sargents and asked them not to encourage the boy, as it was interfering with his career as a mining engineer. Mr. Sargent replied that he saw no harm in it.

“Had the Sargents co-operated with me this trouble would have been obviated," added Mr. Pleming.

Counsel said that Mr. Pleming and the doctor, had undertaken to look after the accused and take care him.

The judge, passing sentence of six months imprisonment, said was taking a lenient course, but encouragement must not be given to these ebullitions of excitement.

Derby Daily Telegraph

Friday 27 February 1925

Within a radius of ten or twelve miles of Derby the countryside is already beginning to show unmistakable signs of spring's awakening. This was evident to a correspondent in the course of a run out to Mapperley on Wednesday morning by way of Breadsall, Morley, and Stanley Common.

A popular house of call, established in 1767, in Mapperley village, is, he says, a perfect museum of natural curiosities, local to the district, of which was enabled to make a casual inspection. For example, there are two examples of the bittern, and one of the heron all, he believes, taken on Mapperley Lake, and an eel as long as a conger, certainly not less than a yard and a quarter, and thick at that, killed on the same water.

There is a good collection of old prints, of scenes and celebrities in and of Derbyshire and Notts, members of the Mundy family of Shipley Hall, and so on.

This ancient inn is one that Dickens would have delighted in describing, with its fine old pieces of furniture, grandfather clocks, etc., and the marked cleanliness and care everywhere apparent. At the side of the house is a charming conservatory, and in a tank among the flowers there used to be a fish that would come to the surface of the water and take a worm out of the hand. Here also in a big cage is a macaw, who owns to fifty years of age spent in captivity at Mapperley, and is probably much older. He is the exact image of "Robert," who was the wonder and joy of the children of an earlier generation (or generations) in Derby Arboretum, and can still crack and crush his daily ration of Brazil nuts. This beautifully plumaged alien answers to the name of “Lloyd George." For what particular reason he was thus christened is not clearly obvious, for cannot be said to be a great talker!

Nottingham Evening Post
Wednesday 08 August 1928


The death occurred suddenly in a London nursing home yesterday of Colonel Beaumont Checkland, of West Hallam.

He was a director and principal shareholder in the Mapperley Colliery pits. The colonel was with the 5th Battalion Sherwood Foresters throughout the war, and rose from captain to colonel, taking over the command four years ago. He was a justice of the peace for Derbyshire and 49 years of age. He was awarded the M.C. for bravery on the field.

The deceased gentleman was well-known in local hunting circles, and for several years hunted with the South Notts., and afterwards with the Earl of Harrington's Hounds. He was a good all-round sportsman in his younger days.

Nottingham Evening Post
Thursday 21 November 1929


Two minors, Rowiand Sharley, Gladstone Street, Heanor, and Samuel Beale. Aged 39. Mapperley Village, Derbyshire, were the victims of terrible pit accident at Kilburn Colliery to-day. They were taking off loaded trams when the Lifted, and both men fell 457 yards down the shaft. The manager. Mr. Alfred Grimes, was in his office at the bottom of the shaft, and while conversation with Charles Beedham, of 68, Holbrook Street, Heanor, he heard a terrific bump.  Going to the bottom they saw raining down the shaft, and dancing off the bottom. When had subsided they were horrified to see lifeless body of Beale lying on the pit bottom.  The body of Sharley was terribly mangled and was entangled in chain the cage. Assistance was forthcoming from Archie Langham, an underground onsetter, and Donald Clayton, deputy, and the bodies were removed to the surface. The accident occurred about 11 o'clock. The exact cause of the cage lifting has not yet accounted for.

Nottingham Evening Post
Friday 22 November 1929


The terrible tragedy at the New Kilburn Colliery, near Ilkeston yesterday, when two surface workers fell down the pit shaft and hurtled to their deaths 457 yards below, was investigated at the Marlpool Institute this afternoon. The victims of the fall were Rowland Sharley, aged 30, of Glad stone-street, Heanor; and Samuel Beale, aged 39, of Mapperley Village, Derbyshire. Both were married men .The men were taking the cage when, it is stated they fell down the shaft and were terribly mutilated. The inquest was held in the Church Institute by the Coroner.

Sheffield Independent
Saturday 23 November 1929


The terrible accident at the Coppice No 3 Pit at the Shipley Collieries, near Ilkeston, on Thursday, when two men were thrown down the shaft and killed was described at the inquest yesterday, a verdict of Accidental death was returned.  No blame was attached to anyone.

The victims were Roland Sharley (30) of Gladstone Street, Heanor, and Samuel Beale (39), of Mapperley Village, Derby.

Harold Hempstead, banksman, said that he was at the pit top and noticed the cage come up at a pretty fast pace and then bang down on the props.  He pulled up the catches of the cage and noticed that the two men. Beale and Sharley, were about to move the loaded tubs from the cage when the cage shot out of sight of the witness who was pulling the trams.

Signal Customary

As the cage went up he let go and fell backwards. He then saw Beale and Sharley disappear down the shaft.   Asked by the coroner, Mr A N Whiston if it was customary for a signal to be given, witness said that it was. No signal was given however after the cage rested on the props.

Archibald Langham, a pit bottom on-setter told how the cage bumped on the bottom of the shaft and rebounded. Immediately afterwards coal began to fall and he moved away. Then all was quiet, and on returning he found Beale and nearby was Sharley.

Winders Story

Evidence was given by Samuel Holmes, the engineman in charge of the windings at the time. He said that he raised the cage clear of the props so that he could lower it on to them, but when he lowered the cage the props were not there and the cage went into the shaft.

He raised it again and on lowering it a second time the props were not there. He waited for a signal and did not get one, and it was not until a quarter hour later that heard that there had been an accident. It was a great shock to him.

Holmes was closely examined Mr. R. Yates, H.M. Inspector of Mines, as to whether or not the props were in position when he lowered the cage. Holmes said was certain that the props, which had to be put in by hand, were not in when he first lowered the cage.

Mr. Yates suggested that Holmes thought he was not the props when indeed he was, and that was the cause of the trouble.

There was no reply.

The Coroner said that was a very sad case. It was to be hoped that the death the two men was instantaneous.


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