Lancashire Fusiliers of Interest

(or infamous)

Lancashire Fusiliers

Sir Richard Lees Knowles MP
The Mining MP

A title for a man who spent his life owning and running Coal mines in NW England. He was also MP for West Salford.
He was appointed Honorary Colonel of the 3rd Volunteer Batallion - The Lancashire Fusiliers in 1899.

War broke out in South Africa later that year and Lees is known to have encouraged the formation of the "Volunteers Active Service Companies" to support the regular Lancashire Fusiliers Batallion in SA.

In addition to this he lead the setting up of a compassionate fund to assist returning servicemen and their families.
The fund still exists today and is known as " Fusiliers Aid Society"

After the conclusion of the Boer War in SA he sought official recognition for the Lancashire Fusiliers
and because of his friendship with King Edward VII it was successful.
The Fusiliers were honoured with a Primrose Hackle to be worn on the left side of head dress as a Battle Honour.

The motto of the Regiment is " Omnia Audax" ( Audacious in Everything) also now includes the right to wear the Red rose of Lancaster on its regiments colours and on monuments to this brave and fearsome regiment of men.
Sir Lees was indeed an honourary man who ensured the world said thank you in the best way possible - with Battle Honours........

There is a Monument on Chapel Street , Salford called "The Shouting Fusilier" he also helped to fruition.
Click here for link to this statue

As for COAL ............he came from a long line of Mining Philanthropists esp in Manchester and surrounding areas. The Sons and grandsons of Andrew Knowles carried on the family business.

Robert Knowles who died 1780, started pits in Eagley Bank and Sharples, north of Bolton. The pits were inherited by his descendants, Andrew (1735-1810), Robert (1756-1819) and Andrew (1783-1847), his great grandson. The family had an interest in this area until 1870- lots of Andrews and Roberts .
Andrew Knowles was born in 1783 in a family whose mining interests began in Elizabethan times and whose descendants dominated the industry at the end of the Victorian era. Before 1810 Knowles operated in Bolton but bought leases in the Irwell Valley near Clifton after that. In the late 1830s Knowles took his four sons into partnership. Andrew Knowles died in 1847 and a son, John, died in 1852 leaving Robert, Thomas and James Knowles to continue the business. The third generation joined the firm after a disagreement in 1872 and Andrew Knowles and Sons Limited was formed in 1783. The firm grew to be the largest on the Manchester Coalfield by the end of the 19th century when it had almost 4,000 employees
The company sank the first Agecroft Colliery which operated until 1928. The output of Knowles' collieries was initially for local use and moved by road transport. Some of the collieries were close to the Manchester Bolton and Bury Canal and by 1850 some had access to the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railways Manchester to Bolton line. Clifton Moss Colliery employed up to 300 men before 1891 when it closed.[5] Little Bolton Colliery on Slater Lane near the River Tonge in Bolton was owned by the company between 1853 and 1863.

In 1866 all workers who had joined the fledgling Mining Federation of Great Britain were locked out of the Knowles pits and the Company defeated attempts to unionise the workforce. The company's intransigence towards unions continued up to 1891 when a strike left miners little better off but the firm was forced to negotiate with a union it had up to then refused to recognise.

(WIKI - grateful thanks for coal mining history as above )