George Lofthouse. EM

The following detail supplied by Barrie Bean, Grandson of George Lofthouse.

Mr George Lofthouse. EM.

Citation for the award of the Edward Medal, Second Class

"On the 4th August, 1914, blasting operations were in progress at the bottom of a pit, 21 feet deep, at Wingate Quarry, Durham. The morning shift had fired three charges of gunpowder (between 30 and 40 pounds) at the bottom of the pit and when a men belonging to the afternoon shift was let down in a kibble or tub at 12:30 he was overcome by fumes.

His mate at the top shouted for assistance and Mr George Lofthouse, who was not concerned in the operations in the pit but was working some distance away, immediately ran to the pit and went down the rope to attempt a rescue. He got hold of the man and signalled to be raised, but almost as soon as the kibble was lifted both men fell out. Those at the top swung the kibble about to clear away the fumes and eventually, about 1:15, both men were brought out. Artificial respiration had to be resorted to. Mr Lofthouse did not come round until two hours later, and the other man could not be revived.

Mr Lofthouse was experienced in the use of explosives and knew the danger of descending into the fumes; his action was therefore extremely courageous."

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