Apedale Underground Workings
Apedale Heritage Centre, Loomer Road, Chesterton, Newcastle-under-Lyme, Staffordshire. ST5 7LB
||Click Plan to Enlarge - Double Click to Reduce
The very large Museum containing hundreds of various artefacts and a cafe is free but the Underground visit has a fee and is open Saturdays and Sundays. It is accessed by a short 1 in 6 Drift into the top seam, the majority of the tour is almost level and one can see down the very steep coal headings worked on the Room and Pillar system and also extracting Iron Stone. Once a month an extended tour, taking a limited number of visitors, down to the lower level which has to be pumped dry for that occasion. The workings are extremely steep at 1 in 2 approximately but the return roadway from the bottom level up to the normal circuit for visitors in 1 in 1.7 and it is necessary to haul one's self up with the aid of a rope due to the slippy, muddy floor and the steepness. The above plan shows the various routes and ventilation current. Work is in progress, on occasions, to extend a roadway in the Spencroft Seam for another return access, extracting a small amount of coal when the volunteer labour is available.
I did visit the Underground Tour in November 2018 and in January 2019 I visited the lower level escorted by Dave, one of the volunteers. In return I donated to the museum a theodolite and levelling instrument complete with tripods. I also donated some safety checks (Motties) to be used by the underground visitors.
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Bilsthorpe Museum, Website
Lady Victoria in Scotland, Website
Big Pit in South Wales, Website
Apedale Valley, Website
Durham Mining Museum, Website
National Mining Museum Wakefield, Website
South Derbyshire Mining Preservation Group, Website - The group meets at Gresley Old Hall, Church Gresley, every Tuesday morning (10am - 12pm) and on the first Thursday of each month. Church Gresley, Swadlincote DE11 9PA, UK