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Doe Lea - Brian Knowles

Some History From Bob Bradley's History Of Coal Mining

Brian Knowles - I used to work at Doe Lea Pit ie Domonics

Brian Knowles
31 Mar 2014
Doe Lea Pit ie Domonics

Dear Sir, I used to work at the above pit from 1974 to 1984 and I have also got a written pocket history if you need to know anything about this pit I would be only too happy to tell you.
Mr. Brian Knowles

Some History From Bob Bradley's History Of Coal Mining

- Click Here To Go To Bob's Pages -

- Photo From Audit Now -

1930 - Doe Lea drift mine was opened at Heath by Dominic Lavin (385), an ex Manager and Undermanager at nearby Ramcroft. The pit worked the Top Hard seam and went under the local name Dominic's or Heath pit.

1945 - Doe Lea drift mine Heath, (Derbyshire) Dominic Lavin (385) owner and Manager, employed 27 men working in Top Hard and 9 on the surface. The mine was referred to by the locals as 'Dominics'.

1946 - Doe Lea Colliery Co Ltd: Heath Pit 20 / 6, Manager Dominic Lavin (385)

1947 - Licensed Mines, East Midlands, Doe Lea: Heath pit, (Doe Lea Colly Co Ltd), Manager Dominic Lavin (385), Top Hard 22 and 8.

1953 - Licensed Mines in the East Midlands, Doe Lea (Doe Lea Colliery Co Ltd) Top Hard 22/8, Manager Dominic Lavin, Undermanager G Gilbert

1958 - There were still some 16 small licensed mines, Doe Lea (Doe Lea Colliery Co Ltd) Top Hard 22/8, Manager Dominic Lavin, Undermanager G Gilbert

1962 - Owner Of Doe Lea Mine Died - Dominic Lavin (385), the Manager and owner of Doe Lea drift mine at Heath, Derbyshire, died. He had opened the mine in 1930 after leaving his post as Manager at nearby Ramcroft, which had closed temporarily at the time due to water problems. He had made provisions for the future by stacking material in the workings at Ramcroft then later breaking into the workings from his drift mine to salvage it. The mine locally known as Dominic's thrived under his management, albeit that he had a stutter and was small and hump backed. An Australian company took over, 33 men employed u/g and on surface.

1966 - Water migrated from Doe Lea and through into Glapwell later through the connection. A connection was made through to Bolsover. A connection had been made by the late Dominic Lavin, owner of Doe Lea drift mine to acquire supplies. Whilst Manager at Ramcroft he stacked a lot of tackle in that area before resigning. However he had not thought about the passage of water getting through to the Glapwell workings. New pithead baths were built in 1954.

1967 - Licensed Mines Operating, Doe Lea (Doe Lea Colliery Co Ltd) 19 Top Hard, 3 on surface

1969 - Licensed Mines - Doe Lea (Doe Lea Colliery Co Ltd) Top Hard 15/5, Manager G Gilbert

1970 - Deaths at Doe Lea Drift Mine - On 13th August 1970, 2 men died at Doe Lea Drift mine, due to poor ventilation. A workman went to measure the water level inbye that was flowing into Glapwell workings and after a time Walter Lavin (6548) Manager and son of Dominic Lavin (385), owner of the mine went inbye to check on him and both were overcome by blackdamp and perished.

1971 - Licensed Mines, Doe Lea: (Doe Lea Colliery Co Ltd), Manager, G Gilbert, Top Hard 12 and 4 on surface.

1976 - The Cort screens used at closed Ollerton Rexco plant were transported and rebuilt on the site and also a Parnaby Rotary barrel washer was installed in 1977 and coal from the local private mines at Amber Valley, Doe Lea and Strathfield at Stretton edge, plus local opencast coal would be washed there.

1979 - Licensed Mines, Doe Lea, (Top Hard, 26 men, Manager Eric G Sellars (3000)

1981 - On 8th February 1981 Doe Lea Drift mine at Heath, (Derbyshire) working Top Hard with 26 men, was taken over by SPO from Doe Lea Colliery Co Ltd. The plan was to boost the annual output from 16,000 tons to 21,000 tons.

1982 - At Doe Lea Drift mine, Heath, (Derbyshire) a shaft was sunk in 2 weeks and connected to the workings for additional ventilation on 1st August 1982. The company Hampton Gold purchased the mine from SPO for £589,000 in November. Manager Eric Sellars (3000), Top Hard, 26.

1986 - Measham Closed, Walter Lavin (6548) (left to run his father's Heath pit)

1994 - Doe Lea drift mine abandoned


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