Kildale girl awarded the R.S.P.C.A.’s Gold Medal

On the 10 July 1930, the Nottingham Evening Post published the following story1‘Heroic Girl’ (1930) Nottingham Evening Post, 10 Jul, 6, available: [accessed 09 Feb 2022].:




The story of a Kildale (N. Yorkshire) girl’s bravery in rescuing from a disused stone mine a sheep which had been lost in a snow-storm has just been revealed at the annual meeting of the North Yorkshire branch of the R.S.P.C.A. at Middlesbrough, when the heroine of the incident received the Society’s gold medal.

The deed came to light through a letter sent to the society’s local inspector, Mr. Horace Arnold, a railway signalman of Kildale. During a snow-storm in February, he said, a farmer. Mr Adam Barker Liddle. living at Lonsdale House Farm, missed two sheep, which were found alive on a ledge down a disused stone mine about 40 feet deep. Mr. Liddle, his son, and his 16-year-old daughter Mary went to the rescue with ropes and ladders. Mr. Liddle recovered one of the animals, but did not feel that it was possible to rescue the other. His daughter, however, went down the shaft with ropes tied to her body made fast to a tree trunk. She succeeded in rescuing the animal after a perilous descent and ascent. Men who witnessed the act stated that it was one of the bravest deeds they had witnessed.

I just love these old stories.

The article talks about a shaft of a “disused stone mine” which I assume must be the Lonsdale Ironstone Mine, or perhaps one of the other nearby mines at Coate Moor or Ayton Bank. Lonsdale House Farm is now called Oak Tree Farm and is centre in the photo.

I wonder what became of Mary.

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    ‘Heroic Girl’ (1930) Nottingham Evening Post, 10 Jul, 6, available: [accessed 09 Feb 2022].

3 Replies to “Kildale girl awarded the R.S.P.C.A.’s Gold Medal”

  1. I think she may have been called Rebecca Mary and was one of 6 children (all born in Teesdale up to 1921). If so she married in 1934 to someone called Shone. Her brother was Samuel Liddle who was killed in December 1944 fighting in Italy and he is commemorated on the WW2 plaque in the church.

    1. Thanks, John. I’ve also had an email with similar info. Cedric Anthony’s book on the history of Kildale has a section on Samuel Liddle.

      Oddly though he lists Samuel as one of 8 siblings but Rebecca or Mary is not one of them.

      I feel another post coming on.

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