End of the road for miners’ welfare

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Another piece of mining history disappeared last week when Meden Vale Miners’ Welfare went into voluntary receivership due to decreasing trade.

The much-loved recreation club’s bar and games room facilities were closed for the last time on Tuesday night.

A spokesman for Welbeck Miners’ welfare trust, which runs the club and looks after its facilities, said the decision was a hard one but had to be taken for a number of reasons.

He added: “We have had to close because of mounting utility and supplies bills and inland revenue debts which have become untenable.

“The colliery closed two years ago and that has not helped because we do not have the support of men who worked there.

“Also, the trade which we relied on from traditional welfare members is dwindling as they get older and are drinking less.”

The spokesman said the tradition of socialising at the welfare club was fading and many now preferred to go out for a meal rather than a few pints in the evening.

Another contributing factor was the smoking ban.

There is hope, however, for sports fans, as rugby, football and bowls facilities will still be available for use at the site.

Said the spokesman: “We are going to market the main building as a business opportunity, so if someone wanted to come along and market it as a pub we would welcome that.

“The trustees and directors are thankful for the support of staff and customers but this had to be done.”

Derek Evans, Mansfield District Councillor for Netherfield ward, said: “My concern is that this is another piece of the local community that has disappeared.

“It is the same old story in former mining communities. There are these huge buildings which cost a lot to maintain and service, and unless they are doing the business they face closure.”