Homecoming of Private Michael Heaviside
Stanley's welcome for VC hero
Civil Parish: Stanley
Private Michael Heaviside, Craghead’s Victoria Cross hero, returned to a public welcome in Stanley on Thursday 12 July 1917.
A huge crowd gathered at Shield Row station to meet the 6.13pm train from Newcastle upon Tyne. Heaviside had been granted 10 days’ leave and had crossed from France on the Tuesday. At the station he was met by members of his family, a reception committee, huge crowds and a cinematographer. In a procession headed by the Craghead Lodge banner, South Moor Colliery Band, local Volunteers and the Church Lads’ Brigade, Heaviside was driven to the Stanley Urban District Council office in Front Street, where he took his place on the balcony above the entrance and was welcomed by the chairman of the council. The procession then proceeded to South Moor and through Bloemfontein, arriving in Craghead at 7.45pm.
For more details see the supporting material below the map.
Regrettably, neither the Stanley Urban District Council minutes (ref. UD/Sta 7) nor the Craghead Parish Council minutes (ref. UD/Sta 21), in Durham County Record Office, make any reference to the occasion.
Contributed by Durham County Record Office