Blanch, Ernest H. (?-?)
Co-founder, with Samuel Bird (q.v.) and others, of Coal Creek Miners’ Association (Korumburra, Vic.) 1893, becoming foundation secretary; CCMA formed after meeting to discuss dismissal of Blanch and another miner for allegedly filling dirty coal; Blanch subsequently reinstated after agreement reached on hewing rate and fines; involved in early controversy over mismanagement of union funds & in 1895 was accused of misappropriating Accident Society funds, although charges not substantiated. In 1899 was on deputation to management of Outtrim mine; when he left the district in May 1901 the local press noted that he was an ex- president of Outtrim lodge of Victorian Coal Miners’ Association. Subsequently moved to NSW coalfields; in May 1906, whilst working at Pelaw Main, moved successfully at special meeting of South Maitland miners that mine-owners be given three months’ notice to abolish night shift, the issue precipitating successful strike action in 1907 under the leadership of Peter Bowling (q.v.)
Korumburra Times; Outtrim News; E. Ross, 1970.
Written by Peter D. Gardner.