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The Treherbert Drowning Case – Inquest & Verdict


On Thursday morning, at the police station, Treherbert, Mr. R. J. Rhys, coroner, held an inquiry touching the death of William Parry, 63 years of age, residing at 142 Dumfries Street, Treherbert, who was drowned at the Ynysfeio Colliery, Treherbert, on Sunday last.

Major A L. Lewis, manager, was present. Deceased’s son said that his father was a pumpman at the colliery, but previous to last Christmas had worked as a collier. Thomas Rees, under-manager, said deceased began his shift on Sunday morning at 8.30. The pumping engine was about 50 yards from the bottom of the shaft. Deceased came up to have dinner, and went down again at 1.30 p.m. The cage went down the same as usual, but some minutes afterwards witness noticed that the engine was not raising water.

He (Rees) went down, but could not see Parry at the engine. He asked the other enginemen if they had seen Parry, and they said they had not seen him. His body was afterwards found in 18in. of water on the sump. His hat had been found by the enginemen. Llewellyn Jones, an engineman at the colliery, deposed to finding deceased’s hat floating on the water, and his body in the sump. His head had been bleeding.

Witness heard a loud thud just before the cage came down. Major A. L. Lewis, the manager, said he went down just after the occurrence. The cage worked very smoothly, and there were handrails at the side and top of the cage. The boards covering the sump extended over the whole of the pit, and there was about 18in. of water on the boards. The distance between the side of the cage and the landing was 1ft. 3in., and in the front 2ft. 3in.

Deceased must have fallen down, but not a great distance. otherwise his body would have been more mangled. He (Mr. Lewis) thought the wound must have been caused by his head having struck against a pipe. Dr. Grant said Parry had died from drowning. He must have been stunned by the fall and could make no attempt to save himself. A verdict in accordance with the medical evidence was returned.

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