Information and photographs submitted by subscribers are posted in good faith. If any copyright of anyone else's material is unintentionally breached, please email me

The Decline Of The Industry Continued
After Nationalisation 1947

Book 6

1990 Pages   1     2     3     4     5     6     7     8     9  

1990 - Page 4

Licensed Mines

Small licensed mines at work in Derbyshire in 1989-1990:

  • Doe Lea (Floyd Oil and Gas (UK) Ltd), Top Hard 15/1, Manager J Mitchell
  • Moor Side (Moorside Mining Co Ltd) Mosborough, Parkgate 11/3, Manager D Amatt
  • Strathfield (H and C Hartshorne and Sons) Stretton, Tupton 9/3, Manager E Hartshorne
  • Amber Valley (H and C Hartshorne and Sons) Stretton, Blackshale 3/0, Manager E Hartshorne.

Opencast Working

Nearby Oakthorpe Mere.

Record Outputs

The first one million tonnes in a year was produced at Sherwood.
Also record outputs were achieved at Ollerton when 1,518,500 tonnes was produced and Silverhill with 872,000 tonnes and Welbeck 1,537,700 tonnes. All Nottinghamshire pits.

Collieries Revalued

All collieries in the country were re-valued by the Inland Revenue during 1989-1990, under the Valuation for Rating (Plant and Machinery) Regulations, 1989. Usually 3 days were allotted to each colliery in order to interview top management personnel, visit selected parts of the underground workings and parts of the surface. Self or Tony Barnes as Senior Surveyors, and Colliery Surveyors accompanied the Inland Revenue Valuers on all visits and interviews.

Senior management personnel at the pits gave an appraisal of the performance of the mine in question. Mining personnel also accompanied the underground parties. An Estates Surveyor Jeff Woods accompanied the team for the surface visit.

Figures for each mine were available by the end of the year, showing the value of all plant, reserves, etc with a grand total for the colliery, after various allowances for depreciation of plant etc.

Values for some of the larger collieries reached around £30m (e.g. Ollerton).

Inland Revenue Mineral Valuers were

  • David Jacobs
  • Mike Gallagher ARICS (ex Assistant at Silverhill, previously Blidworth, Apprentice at Bilsthorpe, and Mansfield)
  • Keith Lumsdon from North East (Managers Cert and Surveyors cert) drafted in to assist.


The redundancy terms for miners were enhanced in March 1990.

British Coal Corporation announced their new strategy. Albert Wheeler (7349) was appointed Regional Director for the Midlands and South and Len Harris (7388) for the North of the country. There was also a reaffirmation of the Colliery Review Procedure, including the Unions’ ability to refer closure issues to the Independent Review Body.

I was made redundant from the post as Senior Surveyor at Edwinstowe HQ, but later invited to return temporarily, employed by British Mining Consultants, to tutor the last remaining Apprentice Surveyors and run a practical course in instrument work for Supervisory Linesmen for a few weeks at Lound Hall (1991), and also to write a detailed water report on all the collieries in the Area/Region, which included all the South Nottinghamshire and North Nottinghamshire pits, and neighbouring Derbyshire and South Yorkshire pits.

Over the years, various Surveyors had written localised reports on water, but now many pits had closed and all mines, (barring 5 - Asfordby, Harworth, Gedling, Bevercotes and Cotgrave) were interconnected by some means or other, such as goaf connections or purpose made connections. It was important to know whether water from closed collieries could eventually affect the working of the open mines, in particular from the safety aspect.

A major factor arising particularly at the shallow mines is that the water is forcing out gases from old workings, mainly methane (firedamp) and carbon dioxide (blackdamp) and I believe problems will surely arise from time to time as the gas is forced out to the surface through past subsidence fractures.

I was also asked to go to Ranchee in India for a few weeks to tutor Mining Engineers, but declined, similarly a job in Iran and China. It appeared a doctor was not on site for the most probable ‘Delhi-belly’ syndrome something I did not relish! If there had been a Doctor I would gone. After that they declined to offer me work.

Bob Draper (4) Senior Surveyor Boring / Records also made redundant along with H Bert Grime (8956) ex Area Tunnelling Engineer (joined Caledonian Mining Co) (died 1991).

Computerised Deployment System

The ‘Logicacard swipe system for deployment of men and safety, developed exclusively for British Coal and already in use at Maltby, (Nottinghamshire pit in South Yorkshire Area), was introduced at Asfordby (North West Leicestershire). This replaced the motty system.

Restoration Of Tips

British Coal accepted responsibility for the restoration of the surface area and tips of collieries which would be closed in the 4 years after March 1990.

Pay Rates

A new pay structure for miners began: pay for one day £34.05, plus Incentive bonus £10, Attendance bonus £8.35, Concessionary bonus 50p, making a daily total pay of £52.90, giving a wage of £255.70 for 5 days and £305.45 for 6 days.

  • For Colliery Overmen £281.00 per week
  • Overmen £273.00 per week
  • Deputy Grade I £265.00 per week
  • Grade II £257.00 per week
  • Attendance bonus for week end £10.55 / hour for Overmen and £9.95 for Deputies.

Mid week Overtime

  • Overmen shift £9.45
  • Deputies £8.95
  • shift Overmen £19.05
  • Deputies £18.00

Full Shift For

  • Overmen £38.10
  • Deputies £35.90
  • Week end hourly rates £10.55 and £9.95 respectively.


At Manton colliery a World record advance of 175m in a week was achieved in March 1990 using a Thyssen Titan heading machine.

Production began from the Deep Soft or Flockton seam at Manton in August 1990 and a 20mph high-speed manriding train was commissioned in the Parkgate seam on 1st October. Although a Nottinghamshire colliery it was administered by South Yorkshire Group:

  • Director E (Ted) Horton (8325)
  • Assistant Directors Brian R Turner (9654) (previously Production Manager Nottinghamshire Area) and G Longmate.

A record output of 17,015 tonnes from a Blackshale face at Cotgrave (South Nottinghamshire) was produced in April 1990 and on 26th May 1990 Gedling had a record 12,717 tonnes from a thin-seam High Hazles face.

Bentinck Shaft

The redundant Bentinck No3 shaft, sunk in 1896 was filled and capped.