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Calendar
The Decline Of The Industry
And Nationalisation 1947

Bk
Chimney
1928

1928 - Page 3


Newcastle Colliery Closed After 75 Years

The Babbington Coal Co closed Newcastle colliery at Whitemoor, Nottingham in May 1928, and abandoned on 9th October 1929 (sunk in 1853 by Thomas North). This colliery is not to be confused with Newcastle colliery at Shipley near Ilkeston in Derbyshire or Newcastle (later Shireoaks) in North Nottinghamshire.

The pits were named after the Duke of Newcastle, a prominent landowner.

Two small diameter shafts were sunk on the east side of a 23 yards (21m) dipper fault, No1 to 136 yards (124.3m), and No2 to 146 yards (133.5m) and both at 7 feet (2.3m) dia. E454610 N342220.

Newcastle Colliery at Whitemoor
Newcastle Colliery at Whitemoor

From No1 shaft coal was worked to the rise of the fault by a short stone drift into the shaft and coal to the dip side was worked from No2 shaft. Worked up to Cinder Hill colliery to north, and many boreholes drilled in advance and flanking in workings to the west, old workings being suspected and some proved.

Seams worked: At Newcastle the Top Hard seam was worked continually from 1853 until Feb 1928. A small area of High Hazel was worked from June 1927 to Dec 1927 and abandoned in 1928 and the Low Hazel or Main coal from 1916-28.

Manpower:

  • Babbington Coal Co: 1894: 252 u/g Top Hard, 59 s/f
  • 1895: 173 u/g, 40s/f
  • 1896: 142 TH, 39 s/f
  • 1897: 141 TH, 35 s/f
  • 1898: 140 TH, 42 s/f
  • 1899: 138 TH, 39 s/f
  • 1900: 235 TH, 81 s/f
  • 1901: 247 TH, 72 s/f
  • 1902: 324 TH, 82 s/f
  • 1903: 356 TH, 88 s/f
  • 1904: 350 TH, 93 s/f
  • 1905: 323 TH, 103 s/f
  • 1906: 324 TH, 105 s/f
  • 1907: 357 TH, 96 s/f
  • 1908: 296 TH, 108 s/f
  • 1909: 307 TH, 83 s/f
  • 1910: 300 app TH, 83 s/f
  • 1911: 285 TH, 83 s/f
  • 1912: 224 TH, 67 s/f
  • 1913: 213 TH, 69 s/f
  • 1914: 213 TH, 69 s/f
  • 1915: 199 TH, 48 s/f
  • 1916: 229 Top Hard and Main Coal, 52 s/f
  • 1917: 245 TH and Main, 57 s/f
  • 1918: 261 TH and Main, 51 s/f
  • 1919: 334 TH and Main, 63 s/f
  • 1920: 344 Top Hard and Main coal, 72 s/f
  • 1921: 311 TH and M, 67 s/f
  • 1922: 371 TH and M, 68 s/f
  • 1923: 401 TH and M, 62, s/f
  • 1924: 501 TH and M, 99 s/f
  • 1925: 389 TH and M, 96 s/f
  • 1926: 387 TH and M, 72 s/f
  • 1927: 293 u/g High Hazel, Top Hard and Main Bright, 74 s/f
  • 1928: 191 u/g Top Hard and Main coal, 61 s/f. Highest manpower was 463 in 1923.

Managers for Newcastle:

  • George Fowler (365 service cert) and Agent pre 1883-1899, taken over by Babbington Colliery Co 1887
  • William Hunt (251) 1899-1901
  • John Poxon (996) 1901-1929.

Undermanagers:

  • Francis Keeling (337 – 2nd) pre 1887-1899
  • John Cooke (2285 – 2nd) 1899-1904; R Jebson (2nd) 1904-1921
  • JW Kirk (2nd) 1921-1929.

Surveyors:

  • John Walters
  • Lewis H Spencer (516) (to the Babbington Coal Company to 1946)

Fatal Accidents at Newcastle

  • Francis Attenborough (15) caught in winding drum on the surface 7 Aug 1857
  • James Revill (33) fall of roof 13 Aug 1863
  • Thomas Wingfield (?) fall of roof 21 Dec 1865
  • Joel Waters (22) fall of roof 8 Mar 1865
  • John Hewson (66) crushed by tubs 23 Jul 1866
  • George Lane (38) fell down the shaft 30 Oct 1871
  • Robert Hopcroft (34) fall of coal 1 Apr 1875, died 10 Apr 1875
  • John Allen (16) run over by tubs 30 May 1876
  • John Ward (37) fall of coal 14 Jun 1876
  • Thomas Hollyhead (40) fall of coal 27 Aug 1878
  • William Kirk (66) crushed by tubs 15 Aug 1899, died 4 Sep 1899
  • Charles Warren (29), had an accident 2 Dec 1903, but died of constitutional weakness, i.e. consumption on 7 Jan 1904
  • George Bean (16), bruised thigh when pinned between tubs 18 Jun 1907, died of tuberculosis 25 Jul 1908
  • James Morley (46), Banksman, committed suicide by jumping down shaft 7 Aug 1914
  • Frank Cale (43), roof fall 30 Nov 1915
  • Ralph Bennett (46), Nystagmus 9 Feb 1916, died 15 Feb 1916 of cardiac failure accelerated by alcoholic poisoning
  • Thomas Henry Smith (15) ganger, fall in a roadway, roof fell on him and broke his neck 13 Sep 1917
  • Arthur Revell (25) crushed by tubs 23 Feb 1922
  • Thomas England (51) fall of roof 6 Aug 1913, died of supperative pyclonephitis of the kidneys 30 Mar 1922
  • Fred Henry Orme (45), stallman, trams ran back and trapped him, died in hospital 23 Jun 1922
  • Frank Charles Vickers (15) crushed by tubs 16 Dec 1925.

Broxtowe Was Closed After 37 Years

The Babbington Coal Co also closed Broxtowe (Nottinghamshire) in 1928, sunk in 1891/92 by Babbington Coal Co. Position E452354 N342932. The photo shows a run of wagons from the pit passing over the viaduct.

Seams worked: Top Hard 1899-1915, Deep Soft 1892-1897, and Deep Hard 1903-1915.

Manpower: Babbington Coal Co

  • 1894: 210 Deep Soft, 51 s/f
  • 1895: 223 DS, 61 s/f
  • 1896: 311 DS, 66 s/f
  • 1897: stood
  • 1898: stood
  • 1899: 128 Top Hard, 43 s/f
  • 1900: 148 Top Hard, 48 s/f
  • 1901: 133 TH, 55 s/f
  • 1902: 137 TH, 55 s/f
  • 1903: 112 Top Hard, 30 Deep Hard, 56 s/f
  • 1904: 123 TH, 48 s/f
  • 1905: 104 Top Hard, 47 s/f
  • 1906: 124 TH, 47 s/f
  • 1907: 136 Top Hard, Deep Hard, 56 s/f
  • 1908: 134 TH, DH, 53 s/f
  • 1909: 120 TH, DH, 54 s/f; 109 TH, DH, 68 s/f
  • 1910: …
  • 1911: 109 TH, DH, 68 s/f
  • 1912: 108 TH, DH, 70 s/f
  • 1913: 94 TH, DH, 65 s/f
  • 1914: 94 TH, DH, 39 s/f
  • 1915: 88 TH, DH, 43 s/f, plus Nuthall Wood pumping station 2 u/g and 3 s/f
  • 1916: 93 TH, DH, 44 s/f
  • 1917: 9 TH, DH, 10 s/f
  • 1918: 9,TH, DH, 7 s/f
  • 1919: amalgamated with Babbington
  • 1923: u/g numbers included in Babbington, 65 s/f
  • 1926: 70 s/f
  • 1927: 64 s/f
  • 1928: 67 s/f
  • 1929: not worked, 27 s/f.

Agents:

  • George C Fowler (365s) 1900-1921
  • Tom A Lawton (1161) 1921-1928

Managers for Broxtowe:

  • George Fowler (365 service cert) pre 1893-1900
  • William Hunt (251) 1900-1901
  • John Poxon (996) 1901-1923 (transferred to Babbington and Newcastle and including Nuttall Wood pumping pit).

Undermanagers:

  • Samuel Starr (377c) pre 1893-1899
  • W Clements (304 / 2) 1899-1923

Surveyors:

  • John Walters -1927
  • Lewis H Spencer (516) -1946

Fatal Accidents Broxtowe

  • Luke Morley (30), coal slipped down at loader and trapped him, 18 Jun 1901
  • Double fatality Isaac Hickman (26) and Tom Hickman Langham (28) fall of roof 11 Sep 1901
  • William Poxon (33) fall of roof 14 Aug 1902
  • Albert Severn (20) head injury ? Oct 1904, died 20 May 1906
  • John Hollyhead (33), coal fell, 12 Jun 1908
  • George Sheldon (49) injured a knee 11 Sep 1916, died from a heart condition 17 Sep 1916
  • George Robert Simms (20) fall of roof 23 Apr 1919
  • John Horace Marshall (20) fall in a roadway 6 Dec 1921
  • Harry Kirk (43) fall of roof 6 Apr 1922
  • John Spencer (41) severe injury to spine 28 Aug 1928, died 9 Oct 1928
  • John Robert Bird (70) Contractor 91s stall, spinal injury lifting a tub 10 Jan 1929, died 13 Jan 1929.

Blidworth Colliery Closed

The new sinking at Blidworth (Nottinghamshire) Newstead Colliery Co Ltd) was closed in Aug 1928 due to extreme faulty ground and poor prospects. No borehole to prove the measures in the vicinity of the colliery site had been done and the depth to the Top Hard seam had been estimated from depths at Mansfield and Clipstone, however there was a large fault between and the sinking was some 200 yards (180m) app deeper than expected and the seam was only about 4’ 0” (1.2m) instead of about 6’ 0” (1.8m). Obviously cost a great deal of money not budgeted for. The company originally named the mine Newstead No2 colliery. Most of the men were given notice and most of the new village houses were boarded up as men left to find work at other collieries in the district.

THE SILENT PIT NATURE MOCKS AT BRAINS AND FINANCE
WHITE ELEPHANT OF THE NOTTINGHAMSHIRE   COALFIELD

I shall not easily forget Blidworth. The colliery village that is not a colliery village or Blidworth Colliery the pit that is not it pit. A pretty little place, Blidworth, nestling on the edge of the Dukeries. with its quaint winding street, its cottages, its lovely old church, quiet and peaceful it is there, too quiet, too peaceful, because over the place hangs the shadow of a tragedy one of the greatest that has ever befallen the mining industry in the Midlands.

“The best laid schemes o' mice an' men Gang oft agley . . . .”

And at Blidworth the brains of scientists the brawn and muscle of strong men, the inch red gold of finance, the hopes and dreams that go to make a reality of life have been set at naught by a freakish whim of nature.

The appalling luck of it all, the devilish fate. Imagine a mighty shaft, sunk deep into the bowels of the earth, a chimney, rearing its gaunt neck into the sky atop a collection of the finest colliery buildings possible, hundreds of coal trucks in the sidings, the stage for a mighty drama of effort and reward, a setting for industry on a grand scale the potential labouring ground of hundreds of men, eager to wrest a living from mother earth eager and willing to wrench and hew black rock that is called coal from the fastnesses which gave it birth that their wives and families might live.

TRICKED

And mother nature has smiled . . . and tricked them all. Tricked the engineers tricked the financiers, made a laughing stock of the brains and the brawn, brought to naught the sweat and toil of years.

Blidworth the pit that is not a pit. There is a fault in the coal seam.  It cannot be worked.

The mighty shaft is smokeless   the machinery idle, or all but idle, the hundreds of trucks stand empty on sidings knee high in lank grass where children play and birds build nests. There are rows and rows of miners’ cottages   neat pretty little places, but there are few miners living in them, and they do not toil at Blidworth pit. Most of the houses have been given over to the Skegby Council who let them to anyone they think fit and the County Council argues about it when anything goes wrong, and says, “Has the Colliery Company this" or “Will the Colliery Company that ?"

I have heard them, and in the sunlight that filters across the Council Chamber at Nottingham one seemed to see a mighty shaft, smokeless—great machinery silent— trucks, hundreds of trucks, empty and rusty, on sidings knee high with grass.

There is some sort of activity at the pit.

A thin trickle of smoke rises from a minor chimney, and men come and go, but it is all a mockery I will not pretend to know what is wrong with the white elephant of Blidworth but the waste of it. The disappointment, the mockery, is appalling If only those clean red bricks could be begrimed with the smoke of great furnaces, if only those empty trucks could be filled with coal if only those neat cottages could be filled with miners and their families, if only . .

The first miner I met in Blidworth was a Welshman. He sat talking to his mate in the bar, and his dialect gave him away I bet myself a bob his name was Williams—and won it! As he rose to go I said, “Cymru am byth, shomi”, and I thought the man was going to kiss me!

 

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