Help Cyril to raise £500k to save pit

Retired miner Cyril Thomas has set up his own campaign to save Kellingley Colliery. He's setting up a fund at the bank and calling on people to donate so that he can get enough money to save the pit. If he raises enough, he also wants to fund a new pool at the former Minsthorpe baths site rather than the one being built at Minsthorpe College.
Retired miner Cyril Thomas has set up his own campaign to save Kellingley Colliery. He's setting up a fund at the bank and calling on people to donate so that he can get enough money to save the pit. If he raises enough, he also wants to fund a new pool at the former Minsthorpe baths site rather than the one being built at Minsthorpe College.

Retired pit worker Cyril Thomas is calling on people across the Five Towns to help him raise funds to save Kellingley Colliery from closure.

The site is expected to close by the end of this year with the loss of 700 jobs.

Mr Thomas, who worked as an engineer at the pit for 23 years, has set up his own fundraising campaign to raise £500,000 and help prevent the colliery from closing.

Mr Thomas, 66, said: “I just can’t sit back and see what’s happening at the pit.

“I want to do whatever I can to help and I want people across the area to get behind the campaign and do what they can to help.”

Mr Thomas, of Hyman Walk, Minsthorpe, has set up a community fund bank account and has also written to football clubs and supermarkets across the Five Towns asking for support.

He added: “I enjoyed every single minute of my time at Kellingley and what is happening at the moment is just not right.

“The miners earn every penny of their money. I’ve seen first-hand the work they have to do so this is the least I can do.”

A government spokesman said it was still considering two state aid bids to extend the life of the pit until 2018.

One application would see the Weeland Road site stay open until 2018 and the other would provide funding for redundancy payments and the retraining of workers.