Sam Bullough 1909 – 1973
Tuesday 17th September 1963 saw the start of what was then a unique slant of a disputation when a delegation of colliers from Savile pit descended on the NUM Yorkshire HQ at Barnsley. They were seeking restitution over a simmering dispute with the NCB management at the pit. This in regard to fall back rates of pay when production was not available. This visit included a discussion with President Sam Bullough (himself a man of Methley) seeking support for their claim. Sam, it would seem was unable to resolve the situation in the short term hence their change of tactics and the introduction of what was to become a headline stay down strike.
Sam was formerly a collier at Allerton Bywater Colliery where he had been elected to become Branch Secretary, a position which was to be the springboard for his success in the ballot for the post of Vice President of the Yorkshire NUM. Success in 1954 brought about as a result of two left wing aspirants standing which was to split their share of the vote.
Sam, throughout his tenure as vice president and later president from 1960 along with his period of office as vice president of the National Union from 1963 was to work against the influx of left wing political ambition into the union. To that end he introduced forms compelling new members to sign an undertakingto prevent alleged communist influence into the union. Sam was opposed to members of the communist party hijacking the trade unions and the labour party to advance their ideology.
Sam initially lived in one of the rows of Methley Junction and later moved on to the new Pindergreen estate. I did meet him on one of his occasional visits to Savile pit where he would look up his old mate Pat Mannion in the medical room for a non-official cal.
He was always pleased to be invited to attend the retired Savile miners tea held annually at the ‘stute’ (Miners Welfare).