Here are some pictures of some finds that I managed to get from our pit
Fools Gold (iron pyrites) is sitting on a base of calcite.
I found this sample when I was working in a heading that was going through a major geological fault called the whin dyke.
I think these are common in coal mines but probably not as good as this example here. It was found by chance in a small crevice that contained a few more that I could not get at.
They are formed by boiling hot water and steam were they collect and form into a cubic shape.
The white calcite they are sitting on are also formed by boiling water and is a similar substance what you find in your kettle if you live in a area with hard water.
I found this example in a large fracture in the roof.
Part of a fossilised tree
I found this piece in between a stone band and coal in the 3rd south, lanch area.
It is rare to get examples like this. It was part of a bigger bit but it snapped trying to recover it so a mate got the other half.
This is half the trouble trying to get good minerals and fossils.
I have some more examples of calcite, a ocean growing plant and some green coloured stone that was also found at the dyke area.
As far as I know the coal seam was laid down in the carboniferous period (about 250 - 350 million years ago) so you can appreciate the age of the fossil, although the calcite, I would think, would be built up over years of heat and cooling.
I am not sure what age the whin dyke will be but as you can imagine would have been a major upheaval to the area as molten rock from the earths core pushed upwards. You can understand this a lot more clearly when you see it underground, you see the faults and lines that developed from the heat and pressure.
The coal seam next to the dyke had been burnt grey with the heat and proved extremely hard to drill with normal coal bits.
Ellington pit on the Northumberland coast also went through the same dyke and I believe they had some trouble with gas although we had none.