Wood Pit Disaster Commemoration Concert

Commemorative project to recount tragic 1878 colliery disaster at Haydock Library

A deeply moving choral homage to a terrible local colliery disaster is set to feature at Haydock Library 140 years on, as part of the award-winning Cultural Hubs, arts-in-libraries programme.

The concert, led by the Haydock Male Voice Choir will commemorate the tragic disaster that occurred at the Wood Pit in Haydock on 7 June 1878, which took the lives of 204 men and boys, and left 93 widows and 282 orphans.

In the wake of the tragedy, the grieving community showed great strength under very difficult circumstances to come together in support of each other. A fund was set up by Lord Derby which raised about £25,000 – roughly £2 million in today’s money.

Alan Gaskell, of the Haydock Male Voice Choir said: “This concert is really important to us as our choir was formed by miners from Haydock in 1923 and many of the members worked in the pit before it was closed. The concert provides us with an opportunity to pay our respects in song to all the men, families and friends who were affected by the disaster.”

There are two performances on Saturday 2 June, Haydock Library at 5pm and 7pm. A special commemorative service will take place at Haydock Library on the 140th anniversary of the disaster on Thursday 7 June. 

Cultural Hubs, the nationally-renowned arts-in-libraries programme, is delivered by St Helens Council’s Library Service which is an Arts Council England National Portfolio Organisation.

Get In Touch

Halton & St Helens VCA 

Halton Office: 01928 592 405
St Maries
Lugsdale Road

St Helens Office: 01744 457100 
2nd Floor Beacon Building
College Street
St Helens
WA10 1TF

Email: info@haltonsthelensvca.org.uk


Halton & St Helens VCA is an infrastructure organisation that provides advice, information and development support services to voluntary, community, not-for-profit and faith organisations and volunteers in the Boroughs of St Helens and Halton.