The Background to the Nine Men of Madeley Project

The Nine Men of Madeley project was conceived as an interactive community heritage experience by local resident Alison Vermee, who wished to recognise the lives of the Nine Men after visiting the graves in St. Michael’s churchyard. Planning began in early 2013.

The motivation was to recognize the lives of these nine men and boys who were killed in the terrible accident at Brick Kiln Leasow pit in 1864. The accident tells a story of life in Madeley, and of the living and working conditions for the working classes at a time of massive social change. As great profits were being generated for the few in the area, the project is designed to honour those who laboured and suffered to create this wealth.

Kath Petty, the Town Clerk for Madeley Town Council was very supportive of the idea, undertaking some early research and recruiting the support of Ironbridge Gorge Parish Council and the Ironbridge Gorge Museum Trust. Robert Petty, brother of Kath and a former teacher at Madeley Court School, also supported the development of the project and did some research and advocacy on behalf of the project.

Janet Doody at Madeley Living History Group was an enthusiastic supporter and encouraged Alison to continue planning for the project. Andy Rose, Regeneration Officer at Madeley Town Council undertook a great deal of research and Shelagh Hampton was commissioned to write the text for the website and the trail leaflet and gave a great deal of energy and commitment to the project.

Funding bids were made to Heritage Lottery Fund and Madeley Town Council, both of which were successful and have funded this project.

We are all most grateful to the funders for enabling this project to happen.

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