The Doctors of Kiveton Park and Wales

There has been a doctor's practice in the villages of Kiveton Park and Wales since before 1900.

Evidence from a Kelly's Directory in the 1890's lists a Dr Hill practising in the village. It is highly probable that the philanthropic Kiveton Coal Company engaged him as they had already built over one hundred houses at Hard Lane and at both Dawson and Carrington Terraces to house the miners employed by the company. The company had also built a school for the community on Station Road, which opened in 1874, having initially allowed the children of their employees to use the pit offices as a classroom.

A second physician called Dr. Saunders was also in practice from around 1900. He had a surgery at the rear of where the Wales Jubilee Club now stands.

After the First World War and the retirement of Hill and Saunders the villages saw the arrival of Doctors Baker and Mackenzie.

Dr Baker was to build the splendid house opposite the entrance to Stoney Bank Road called Red Gables and Mackenzie built Beechcroft (now the Little Explorers day nursery). Surgeries were held at both houses with the doctors themselves dispensing any prescribed potions.

Many villagers will remember the frightening sight of two African spears mounted on the wall of Dr Baker's surgery.

When Dr Mackenzie first arrived in the village he set up a surgery in the first house on Colliery Road after having probably been engaged by the Colliery owners.

Somewhat of an eccentric, he was unable to drive yet owned one of the few cars in the village and employed the services of Jack Unwin, father of Rowland Unwin as his driver and fee collector.

His wife owned a beautiful chestnut horse called "Darnie" and would regally ride, side saddle, through the village. As she passed by men would respectfully stand to attention and doff their caps. Some children, however, could not resist being mischievous.

Legend has it that one youth on hearing the horse pass wind cried " Mek it f**t agin missis", much to the riders embarrassment.

Dr Mackenzie eventually decided he needed to learn to drive and employed Mr Unwin to both give him lessons and to act as his chauffeur. On passing his test he then bought an additional identical car and used one for business and one for pleasure.

Dr Kenneth Mackenzie was a close personal friend of my parents and the reasons for my brother Roger studying to become a doctor and my being given my Christian name.

My mother was his midwife for many years and our home was "open house" on a Sunday morning when he would pay his weekly visit for his "wee dram". There were two doors leading from our living room on Wesley Road. One led into the kitchen and to outside and the second opened into the pantry. As my father purposefully kept him in conversation, Doctor Mackenzie seemed to always depart each week into our pantry emerging, totally confused, muttering his apologies.

Dr and Mrs Mackenzie had three children called Jean, Nancy and Muriel. Jean the couple's eldest daughter, also became a doctor, studying in the same year as my brother at the University of Sheffield.

Dr Baker's retirement brought Dr Jago to the village in the mid 1930's.

As war loomed Dr Isaline, joined Mackenzie. As a German Jew, she had escaped the Nazi tyranny and fled with her family to England. On her arrival in the district she lived in Firvale, Harthill before moving to one of the villas on Wales Road opposite Lime Tree Avenue.

Brenda Bradley recalls in her book "Growing Up in a Beautiful Environment" a story she was told by her cousin Mary Wainscote about Dr Isaline.

When she was about twelve or thirteen her Dad asked her to take some vegetables, which they had quite a lot of, down to Woodall to sell, transported in a pony and trap. When they pulled up at Woodall a couple who were out walking asked Mary could she point them in the direction of Kiveton. Mary sent them on their way but noticed that the lady had a German accent. After they set off she turned the pony and trap around and galloped, hell for leather, back to Harthill and straight up to the policeman's house because she had worked out that they were German spy's who would probably be on their way to blow up Kiveton Park Colliery.

It turned out that the lady out for a walk was Dr Isaline!

Margaret Gibson, nee Mallender, knew Dr Isaline's large family well. She remembers the family included grandparents, an aunt and uncle, parents, and a brother called Benny who was interned at the outbreak of the War.

Dr. Isaline's sister, who had curly red hair, and her husband, a full blooded German, who was a big man with short cropped blonde hair lived in Bourneville in the Midlands where he had a managerial position at the Cadbury chocolate factory. Their name was Schmeltzer. Occasionally the couple would travel north to Kiveton to pay a visit to the doctors house on Wales Road bringing with them their two daughters, Hannah the eldest girl, who had been born in Germany and Ruth who had been born in England.

On these visits to Kiveton, Mr and Mrs Schmeltzer, would stay with the Mallenders who then lived in a house on Wales Road, opposite what is now the Bridle Shop, then Smith's Butchers. Mr and Mrs Mallender and their daughter formed a close friendship with the family and Margaret also developed a taste for continental cuisine and a love of apfel strudel.

The elderly grandparents loved walking around the village. They often commented on how lovely it was to be able to take a walk where they would not be intimidated by jack booted soldiers yelling at them and driving them away at the point of a rifle. They were amazed at the freedom they had suddenly gained.

Dr Isaline was a notoriously bad driver and is best illustrated by the fact that she once drove her little red car into the air raid shelter excavation opposite Powis's shop. It was said that when she was out and about in her car an early warning was sent to other drivers to beware!

She eventually moved to another practice in Hull and it was there that the Mallenders met her again. While on holiday in Withernsea Margaret had been taken by her parents to lunch in Hull. As the family left the restaurant there was suddenly a screeching of brakes and a little red Ford shot across the road and came to a shuddering stop in the middle of the wrong side of the road. The driver's door opened, and who should come rushing across the road but non other than Dr Isaline!

Quite regardless of the traffic, she hugged Mrs Mallender, and examined the face and eyes of the young Margaret who she had attended and treated in Kiveton when she had broken her arm in 1939, and started nattering away while impatient drivers had to swerve around her abandoned car.

With the War ended Dr Mac, as he was affectionately known, expanded his practice. He was joined during the next twenty years by Dr Ferguson, (who lived in one of the houses next to the Coop on Wales Road and played football for the Kiveton Park Colliery Football Club), Dr Rowlands (who later became his son in law), Dr Imre (who married a local girl called Betty Chisholme), Dr McKinnon and a young Dr Collington.

Dr Collington's exploits are legendary both on and off the cricket fields of Kiveton and Harthill and also at Worksop Golf Club where he was a member. A former "Bevan Boy" he became a favourite of his patients and a close friend. He also blamed me for breaking his finger when he was fielding in the gulley for Harthill in one of the "Derby" matches against Kiveton Park. He dropped the catch much to Geoff Bennett's displeasure!

Tony's examinations were never the same again!

In 1959 Dr McCloughlin joined the practice after the retirement of Dr Mackenzie.

The good doctor and his wife had bought a house in Little Kimble in Buckinghamshire and moved south.

Dr McCloughlin and his wife Jean lived on Red Hill before buying Red Gables after Dr Jago's retirement. Their family became pillars of the community taking an active roll in Kiveton Chapel where Derek occasionally preached and where both he and Jean sang in the choir. Derek was an avid follower of Yorkshire cricket and was also made President of the Colliery Cricket Club.

In the late 1960's a move was made away from Beechcroft to a larger surgery on Walesmoor Avenue. Doctors Kutty, and Taylor joined Doctors Collington and McCloughlin and Mousley at the new premises.

Dr Mousley and his family moved into the vacant Beechcroft. When they left the practice the property was converted into a guesthouse.

In 1986 Dr Say arrived, and in 1989 was joined by Doctors Reid and Wallis after Doctors Collington, Kutty, Mousley, and Taylor had all left the practice. Dr Susan McCloughlin joined her father and the team at Walesmoor Avenue from 1990 to 1994. Dr Hopkinson also joined the practice but stayed for only a short time. Dr Tooth then joined during 1994.

1995 saw the retirement of Dr McCloughlin and the development of the plans to build the present Primary Care Centre. The Primary Care Team first used the new building from January 1997 and it was officially opened by Lynda Shelton B.A. J.P on 11th February 1998.

Since that day the practice team has been augmented by the addition of Doctors Thorman (1998), Speight (2000), and Dr's Andrew and Mary Grafton in 2001 and 2003 respectively.

Article by Marie Godfrey and Ken Chapman.

If anyone has any further information regarding the Kiveton and Wales Medical Practices please contact the Kiveton and Wales History Society on 01909 773 712.

Or contact our web site on kivetonwaleshistory.co.uk

Kiveton and Wales History Society 
October 2010

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