Jim Henry Appeals to Readers for Help
In Finding All of Scotland’s Mining Memorials
WHILST Scotland's mining industry is a thing of the past, there are many mining related memorials stretching from Perth in the north to Rowanburn (Canonbie) in the south and from Prestwick in the west to Prestonpans in the east.
There is also the National Mining Memorial Centre at the National Mining Museum Scotland (NMMS) This is based in the Lady Victoria Colliery at Newtongrange in Midlothian, next to the new Borders line railway station.
As a volunteer at NMMS I have been seeking to locate and photograph all these Memorials for the purpose of producing an informative handbook, to be placed in the National Mining Memorial Centre.
To date I have located almost 160 mining memorials.
Some memorials record those killed in disasters including Scotland's worst ever disaster at Blantyre on October 22nd 1877. Others record details of those killed at individual collieries such as the memorial to Bilston Glen miners located in Loanhead.
There are memorials dedicated to the memory of individual collieries such as Bothwell Castle Colliery in South Lanarkshire and some even record the existence of now. long gone, mining villages such as Benwhatt in the Doon Valley near Dalmellington.
In Danderhall there is a memorial to Child Miners of Scotland which is close by a memorial to 800 years of mining in the Lothians.
The list includes memorials to miners who had worked in specific mines who died in the First World War which is evidenced by a memorial in Standburn near Falkirk.
In addition, there are memorials to miners who moved on to pastures new such as Ken Hardie. a founder of the Labour Party who is commemorated in Cumnock, and Andrew Fisher, who left his native Crosshouse and went to Australia where he served three terms as Prime Minister.
I am aware of proposals for new, yet to be built memorials, in towns including Gorebridge, Rutherglen and Fauldhouse.
The memorials come in a number of shapes and forms ranging from the massive Blantyre Disaster Centenary memorial at High Blantyre to the small paving stone memorial in Shotts.
Many use actual or replica minehead wheels while, near Auchinleck, the Barony Colliery headframe remains as a memorial which can be seen from miles around.
I would like the proposed handbook I am compiling to be as complete as possible and am seeking information about mining related memorials I may have missed.
Some may be located within churches or church halls. These may be in the form of plaques, sculptures, stained glass windows, and as headstones in churchyards or cemeteries such as the memorials to the Dumbreck and Barrwood Disasters which are both in Kilsyth Cemetery.
The list of the memorials identified to date can be view on the NMMS website and photographs can be seen on the Healy Hero website.
If you know of any not listed, please do contact me with details of their locations and when they can be viewed and photographed.