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Calendar
The Decline Of The Industry Continued
After Nationalisation 1947

Book 6
Chimneys
1988
1990

1988 Pages   1     2     3     4     5     6     7     8     9     10     11     12  

1988 - Page 2


Arkwright Closed After 90 Years

Collieries Closed In 1988

Arkwright Town (Photo From History Of Arkwright Town)

Arkwright colliery (North Derbyshire) sunk at Arkwright Town south of Long Duckmanton was closed on 21st January 1988 after 90 years.

The 2 original mine drifts at Calow (closed 1934) 439 ft (133.8m) above sea level about 1,400 yards to the east of Arkwright surface had been sunk to the Top Hard in 1897/98 as Calow colliery by Staveley Coal and Iron Co (No1 Footrill SK/4166169867, No2 Footrill SK/4165869886), and 2 further surface drifts at 1in3 dip first named Arkwright located at Arkwright town were driven as intakes to the Waterloo seam in 1938 by the Arkwright Coal Co.

Original drifts 500 yards (457m) No1 Footrill SK/4287270375, surface level 94.4m, No2 Footrill SK/4288970342, surface level 95.1m, later connected to Calow Main (Staveley) and expanded into Sitwell seam 1943-1944 and later First Waterloo.

A total of 5 drifts served the colliery at finish as No3 drift E442704 N370424, surface level 103.7m, driven in 1972 and operational by 1973 (pictured) was to serve as a main return. All were connected by cross measures drifts.

From 1938 to 1956 coal was hauled up No1 drift at 1in3.4 gradient in 15 cwt tubs by endless rope, one set per run. This system was replaced by an Eickhoff plate conveyor which in turn in 1964 was replaced by a 300hp 36” (0.91m) wide conveyor. This conveyor was up rated to 450hp in 1975 giving a capacity of around 640 tons per hour.

A 21 feet (6.4m) dia shaft was started c1943 but was halted at only 30 yards (27.5m) deep in 1950. The contractors were Kirks, Manager George Cowlishaw. In 1952 the shaft was filled in and the engine was transferred to a pit in Leicestershire.

Top Hard workings approached Tom Lane workings to the north.

When Bonds Main closed the men were transferred to Arkwright.

Calow drifts were abandoned in 1972 as they were in poor condition.

Dowty 6 leg chocks were installed on a steep face, 61s in June 1969.

No3 drift was nearing completion Oct 1972. Bored and fired and material loaded outby Eimco shovel, metal tubing for exhaust fan.

A new stockyard was opened in 1973.

A mini-dozer, a bucket on tracks was introduced on 72s panel in Sep 1975.

Pithead baths were built 1952/54 and extended in 1976.

Dump trucks were used to take dirt to the tip and ran on old railway sleepers and then the muck was spread by bulldozer.

A greaser was installed in 1977.

A new Coal Prep Plant with lorries loading under the screens Oct 1977.

New control room. A new car park was opened. Coal was outcropped after closure.

In 1952 the Welfare was opened.

It was a unit of No1 Area, then North Derbyshire Area of the NCB.

The workings in parts were exceptionally steep in excess of 1in3 caused by the Brimington anticline. As a friend of mine Colin Barber the Unit Mechanical Engineer said ‘It doesn’t matter which direction you travel underground, every roadway is uphill’.

Highest manpower ever was 994 in 1978-1979 and highest tonnage of 708,523 in 1972-1973.

Computerisation of conveyors, bunkers, pumps etc with VDU (Visual Display Unit) in control room was installed in 1976.

A Cowlishaw bunker underground could hold 50 tons of run at peak loading.

Roofmaster supports were tried also.

A number of dewatering holes were drilled to Ramcroft 1st Waterloo from 2nd Waterloo.

A coal seam was found whilst digging out the foundations for the pithead baths.

The NCB erected new blue and yellow sign boards at all pit entrances including Arkwright.


Seams Worked
  • Top Hard 1939-11/8/1952
  • Sitwell 1943-1944
  • 1st Waterloo 1951-29/9/1969, uneconomical
  • 2nd Waterloo, a circuit was driven in the seam 1945-11/8/1952 and reopened 1968 and to 17/5/1983, abandoned 6/6/1984
  • Tupton 4/2/1966 and reopened 3/11/1969 23/5/1987, uneconomical
  • 2nd Ell 1971- 4/6/1979, worked out
  • Deep Soft abandoned Aug 1923 worked from Calow drifts, re-entry from Arkwright 16/5/1977, worked 1980-1983 and again to 22/1/1988, exhaustion of reserves and Tupton Threequarter, coal 0.91m 1979-6/5/1986, uneconomical
  • Silkstone (Calow) 1897-1906.

Water was always a problem at the steeply graded mine.

A planned connection to Markham was abandoned, but there was a connection to Bolsover heads in 1964?

  • Pit bottom pumping 15m gals per annum at 30 gpm.
  • Water from Ell seam, 3m gals per annum at 6 gpm,
  • Deep Soft seam, 9m gals per annum at 18 gpm from lower part and 5m gals per annum from upper part at 10 gpm.
  • Water from Tupton and Threequarter seams 15m gals per annum at 30 gpm with some of it coming from the Calow drifts.

 Arkwright and Calow drifts (No1 SK 41661, 69867 and No2 41658, 69886 were sealed by April 1988 and the men were transferred to other mines or retired.
Locally it was known as Wangum pit.


Old Collieries In The Vicinity Were
  • Tom Lane (SK 443250, 372120 app)
  • Westcroft colliery shafts (SK 442900, 372250 app) were nearby.
  • Springwood shafts to 2nd Ell nearby E442200 N368090 app, 2 adits E442300 N368150 app.
  • Lodge farm colliery Dec 1925 and 1926 head finished Oct 1930.

Manpower Staveley Coal and Iron Co
  • 1897: 4 Silkstone, 2 s/f
  • 1898: 3 Silkstone, sinking, 6 s/f
  • 1899: 11 Silkstone, 17 s/f
  • 1900: 34 u/g, 21 s/f
  • 1901: 73 u/g, 30 s/f
  • 1902: 215 u/g, 85 s/f
  • 1903: 183 u/g, 67 s/f
  • 1904: 310 u/g, 101 s/f
  • 1905: 314 u/g, 85 s/f
  • 1906: 278 u/g, 85 s/f, finished.

Tonnages and Manpower for Arkwright since Nationalisation: NCB:
No1 Area East Midlands Division:-

  • 1947: 157,520 tons, 339 men
  • 1948: 178,739 tons, 364 men
  • 1949: 236,920 tons, 496 men
  • 1950: 256,661 tons, 583 men
  • 1951: 244,868 tons, 618 men
  • 1952: 278,998 tons, 656 men
  • 1953: 273,694 tons, 669 men
  • 1954: 317,623 tons, 676 men
  • 1955: 314,749 tons, 709 men
  • 1956: 323,702 tons, 738 men
  • 1957: 348,449 tons, 796 men
  • 1958: 352,660 tons, 821 men
  • 1959: 353,166 tons, 816 men
  • 1960: 326,966 tons, 785 men
  • 1961: 337,779 tons
  • 1962: 296,216 tons, 775 men
  • 1963/64: 292,819 tons, 765 men
  • 1964/65: 269,286 tons, 747 men
  • 1965/66: 291,233 tons, 693 men
  • 1966/67: 322,500 tons, 656 men

North Derbyshire Area:-

  • 1967/68: 343,338 tons, 660 men
  • 1968/69: 439,183 tons, 814 men
  • 1969/70: 567,832 tons, 888 men
  • 1970/71: 674,002 tons, 920 men
  • 1971/72: 623,874 tons, 917 men
  • 1972/73: 708,523 tons, 913 men
  • 1973/74: 515,969 tons, 928 men
  • 1974/75: 680,877 tons, 931 men
  • 1975/76: 566,067 tons, 934 men
  • 1976/77: 504,407 tons, 946 men
  • 1977/78: 556,306 tonnes (547,518 tons), 972 men
  • 1978/79: 520,967 tons, 994 men
  • 1979/80: 463,706 tons, 984 men
  • 1980/81: 682,176 tonnes, 1,039 men
  • 1981/82: 693,194 tonnes, 1,040 men
  • 1982/83: 662,141 tonnes, 1,031 men
  • 1983/84: 534,138 tonnes, 990 men
  • 1984/85 (strike) 152,062 tons, 652 men
  • 1985/86: 594,757 tonnes, 905 men
  • 1986/87: British Coal: 363,991 tons, 617 men.

Colliery merged with Markham October 1986.

Agents:-

  • Reg (Rex) Ringham (760) Agent 1938-1943
  • Harold Kirk (1511) Agent 1944-1945
  • Reg (Rex) Ringham (760) Agent 1945-1946
  • Ben Kendall (1944) 1947-

Sub-Area Manager / Group Manager / Production Managers:-

  • Ben Kendall (1944) 1947-1951
  • Arthur W Baddeley (2543) Sub Area Manager) 1952-
  • Len E Fletcher (3059) Group Manager 1965-

Managers for Arkwright:-

  • LW Limb (1792) 1938-1939
  • G Baxter (2834) 1940-1943
  • Alf W Gray (4013) 1943-1954 (promoted to Sub Area Manager)
  • Len E Fletcher (3059) (from Staffordshire) 1955-1958
  • Frank Rimmer (3649) 1958-1969
  • Alan Hird (5328) 1969-1975 Agent Manager then General Manager, (transferred from Holmewood)
  • Wm (Bill) W Bryan (8590) Colliery General Manager 1976-1979
  • C Arnold Heeley (7692) Manager (transferred from Whitwell), July 1979-1985
  • Brian Bell (9848) 1985-1988.

Deputy Managers:-

  • Keith J Otter (8932) 1968-1970 (promoted from Warsop, promoted to Manager Renishaw Park 1970, transferred to Agent Manager Whitwell 1971)
  • Don Hotchkiss (8632) 1971-1975 (promoted from Renishaw Park)
  • David C Gardner (9093) 1976-1979 (promoted from Assistant Manager Florence, previously Holditch and Undermanager at Stafford 1966, transferred to Pleasley)
  • Arnold Vardy (7891) 1979-1982 (transferred to Warsop)
  • Chris JE Smith (10952) 1983-1986 (transferred to Bolsover)
  • Malcolm C Saint (9987) 1987-1988.

Assistant Managers:-

  • JH Eric Dobb (4407) 1969-
  • Malcolm C Saint (9987) 1976-1987 (promoted to Deputy Manager).

Undermanagers for Arkwright:-

  • Fred Oldfield (4397) first one 1948-1953 (later Deputy Manager Grassmoor)
  • AJ Dolan 1953
  • I Orton (4445) 1953-1958
  • Terry C Beaver (4436) 1958-1964 (Deputy Manager Shirebrook, then Warsop
  • G Jack Wood (5274) 1964-1968
  • Don Clay (8599) 1968-1970
  • Don Hotchkiss (8632) 1969-1971 (promoted to Deputy Manager)
  • Peter Slater (9185) 1971-1977
  • Barrington (Barry) A Reynolds (9910) 1971-Nov 1972 (promoted from Assistant to Undermanager at Markham, left industry for a time, then re-joined British Coal in the Training Branch North Nottinghamshire 1974, d 2012
  • B Ken Trueman (6779) 1973-1977
  • Peter J Beavan (10189) 1978-1979 (transferred from Pleasley, promoted to Shirebrook)
  • Tom B Durrant (10130) 1978-1981
  • R (Bob) L Tighe (4871) 1979-1983
  • Graham G Bramley (2nd) 1983-1984
  • Mark RH Hoare (11126) 1983-1986
  • Phil Barber (10891) 1983-
  • Eric R Burton (11063) 1987-1988.

Surveyors included:-

  • Matt Bown (2104) date 5/5/49, 1/8/1951-
  • Malcolm S Hardy (2628) transferred from Grassmoor, 1/2/1983
  • Mick D Skinner (4704) 1/3/1983-1988.

Fatal Accidents Arkwright
  • Ernest Lander (28) Haulage, crushed by tubs 23/5/1941
  • Harold Tideswell (28) Face man, fall of roof 4/9/1953
  • Branslaw Marcinkoski (45) manriding accident on 26/1/1958, died 9/12/1958
  • George Allcock (47) Face man, fall of roof 5/11/1962
  • Geoffrey Hawkins (45) Face man, fall of roof 11/2/1963
  • Barrie Nightingale (31) Pulley rope came loose from a coal tub and caught his legs 8/12/1966, died 28/12/1966 In memory Barrie
  • Jeffrey Thomas (37) Face man, caught in a coal cutter 1/12/1970
  • Jan Madzia (40) injured on a conveyor belt 3/7/1973.

There was an incident on the pit tip on 26/3/1970 when water was found issuing out of a 4 ft (1,2m) deep hole from an unknown source; after closure methane gas was escaping from the abandoned workings and the stopped off drift through fissures etc into houses in the rows of Arkwright Town. It was decided due to the danger that the whole of the village be demolished and a new village was built nearby to house all the residents.


Previous Old Pits Closed In The Calow Area (North Derbyshire)
  • Bolehill to the northeast
  • Calow
  • Chapmans Footrills
  • Wood Nook to the southeast
  • Old Level to the southwest
  • Furnace Hillock to the west.

Pumping continued at Duckmanton and Hartington shafts.


Opencast Sites

Opencast sites in the area were

  • Cock Alley, Waterloo seam 4’ 0” (1.22m) 1958
  • Coppice Farm 3’ 9” (1.14m), 1947
  • Springwood Farm 4’ 6” (1.37m), and Dunsil 1’ 8” (0.50m) 1950
  • Kennel Rock and Dunsil 1951
  • Moor Farm
  • Brim
  • Duckmanton Moor.