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The Decline Of The Industry Continued
After Nationalisation 1947


  1958    1    2    3 

1958 - Page 3

HM Inspectorate

East Midlands.

  • HM Inspectorate: Harold S Stephenson succeeded William (Bill) B Brown as Divisional Inspector
  • Senior District Inspector George Miller
  • Inspectors: Robert (Bob) A Ridsdale continued.
  • Inspector of Horses: Tom J Melody, (New Tupton)


  • Senior District Inspector: George Jenkins
  • District Inspectors: Frank Bishop (3258) and C William (Billy) Percival (2212)
  • Inspectors: John (Johnny) J Evans and M George Thomas.

North Derbyshire

  • Senior District Inspector: William (Willy) Whitehouse
  • District Inspector: FC MackieĀ (2500)
  • Inspector SD Thorpe.

South Derbyshire

  • District Inspector: Fred Shooter
  • Inspector Arthur Chaplin (3963).

Collieries Closed in 1958

Woolley Moor Drift Mine, (Derbyshire) Was Closed 1958 After 3 Years

Woolley Moor Drift In September the small mine (Derbyshire) opened by the NCB in 1954-1955 was closed after 3 years due to the high sulphur content rendering the coal unsaleable. 2 adits dipping at 1in 6.8 and 1in 7.2 were driven to the Alton seam.

Output and Manpower NCB

  • 1955: 613 tons, 9 men
  • 1956: 1,999 tons, 39 men
  • 1957: 1,913 tons, 55 men
  • 1958: 9,919 tons, 61 men (inc 5 surface men).

Production ceased in September 1958.

  • Manager Woolley Moor: RH Swallow (2557) transferred from Pilsley 1958.
  • Undermanager: EC Prince (2nd) transferred from Pilsley 1955-1958.
  • Surveyor: Geoff T Hancock (2755).

Fatal Accidents

Only one, Harold Kymes (43) killed when a 3’ 0” (0.90m) lump fell from a tunnel roof and hit him. Inquest held on 17/8/1956.
It was a naturally wet pit and 540,000 gallons of water per day was being pumped. The area nearby had been open casted in 1954 and in Jan 1955 old workings were revealed.

Riley Lane No1

Riley Lane No1 (Derbyshire), (H and C Hartshorne) adits to Low Main, 3’ 8” (1.12m) thick, worked 1954-1958
Surveyor: Richard Robb (2539).

Hucknall No1 Closed After 96 Years

Hucknall No1 colliery (Nottinghamshire) sunk 1861/1862 on Watnall Road by Walker and Co was closed down but abandoned later, as all activities were concentrated at the No2 colliery in Portland Road. Although coal winding had been terminated in 1943, the No1 pit had continued to be used for ventilation, manriding and materials. Men were transported by bus to No1 pit shaft (renamed Babbington No7) for a time whilst alterations were done at Babbington. They rode this shaft as the Deep Soft workings from Babbington were approaching Hucknall No2 shaft area and bussing the men was quicker than underground transport. Positions: SK54NW, No1 shaft 452692, 348033, No2 shaft 452700, 348020.

Stanley Closed

Stanley (Derbyshire) Kilburn abandoned Dec 1958. Coal 4” (0.10m), black bat 4” (0.10m), coal 4’ 3” (1.30m) pricking 1” (0.02m), coal 1’ 2” (0.35m). Water was a great problem and 640,000 gallons was pumped a day. Trial shaft 17 yards (15.5m) and drift driven 78 yards (71m) dipping at 1in4.5 through the Chitter bed.

  • Manager: J Hobley (2651)
  • Surveyor: CP Cullen (3163) under supervision of SEG Hill (870) (Group Surveyor).

Sutton Scarsdale Closed

Sutton Scarsdale Drift mine (Derbyshire) (H Blair, J Blair and W Outram) worked the Top Hard up to 22nd December 1958 when it was closed. The working was limited by old workings from Sutton colliery (Derbyshire). Workings thirled through to this waste at various points and constant pumping was required to keep the dip workings clear of water whilst working. 15 men worked underground. Mines had been in the area for centuries. A previous drift had closed in 1949 and one called Sutton in 1887.

Sutton cum Duckmanton (Derbyshire) another small drift mine had closed earlier too.
Surveyor: William (Bill) M Erskine (1518).

Power Station Opened

Castle Donington coal burning power station was officially opened. This was another welcome opening for sales of coal from the Midlands collieries.

Getting coal 20 Infusion or Cardox firing instead of using explosivesGetting coal Boring shot holeAlternatives To Explosives

The Armstrong air breaker was introduced at many collieries as an alternative to shot firing by explosives, as at Ollerton. Cardox explosive tubes, another alternative had been used at mines such as Rufford for many years (Nottinghamshire).


At Teversal (Nottinghamshire) a method for breaking down the coal using water under high pressure was tried in the Dunsil seam. Similar to the air breaker system a tube containing a metal disc was inserted into the boreholes on the face and when the water pressure reached a pre-set maximum the disc fractured and the pressure thus released broke down the undercut coal, similar to shot-firing but without the fumes. The water acted as a dust deterrent. The coal was then loaded out by hand (shovel) onto a face conveyor belt as on the other panels. The system did not prove to be too successful as the face did not turn over fast enough being the spare face at the time and was shortening down by working a triangular area. Water ampoules were used later in conjunction with explosives in shotfiring, again as a dust suppressant.

Lump Shearer

At Pye Hill (Nottinghamshire) a lump shearer was installed in an effort to create larger coal.

Mines Rescue Stations

There were still some 16 small licensed mines and 2 quarries mining coal in Derbyshire:

  • Alfreton Brickworks Quarry (Robinson’s Brickworks Ltd) Waterloo, 12 men above ground
  • Cobnar Wood (JW Fidler Ltd) Deep Hard and Tupton nil/4
  • Dent Main (Dent Main Colliery (1924) Ltd) Parkgate 26/13
  • Doe Lea (Doe Lea Colliery Co Ltd) Top Hard 22/8, Manager Dominic Lavin, Undermanager G Gilbert
  • Handley No1 (Handley Collieries Ltd) Flockton 30/6
  • Harper Hill (Horace Taylor (Whatstandwell) Ltd) Waterloo 12/2, Manager Don Rogerson
  • Lightwood (Handley Collieries Ltd) Deep Hard 20/4
  • Moor Side (Dent Main Colliery (1924) Ltd) Parkgate 10/2
  • Moorwood Moor Quarry (Refractory Mining Ltd) Alton 10
  • Mossbrook (Mossbrook Colliery Ltd) Parkgate
  • Newbold (Pearson and Co (Chesterfield) Ltd) Tupton and Tupton Threequarters 10/3
  • New Plumbley (W Redfern) Deep Hard
  • Riley Lane, Pentrich (H and C Hartshorne) Low Main 11/3
  • Scarsdale (H Blair, JBlair and W Outram) Top Hard 15
  • Springfield Mine, Old Tupton (Firthwood Collieries Ltd) Deep Soft
  • Strathfield, Stretton (H and C Hartshorne) Blackshale
  • Stretton (Horace Taylor(Whatstandwell) Ltd) ? Coal
  • Wheeldon Mill No1, Brimington (JS Gaunt) Deep Hard, Piper 17/4.

TH Arches

Roadway Supports THH ArchesAt Teversal (Nottinghamshire) Toussaint Housmann or TH arches were used in the gate roads of the Waterloo seam. These were yielding arches in 3 V shaped pieces, with two wrap-around joints clamping the pieces together. When weight came on, the arches yielded by sliding down and did not distort too badly, the disadvantage being that the height of the gate was lowered too and ‘stooping’ was the order of the day. I remember the aggro we had as surveyors, because it affected the line pins established in the gates to control the direction, which now in this seam had to be spads or screw eyes in wedges of wood knocked tight to the roof over the arches, but because of the sliding action, tended to move the wedges and so new base lines were continually having to be re-established with a dial survey about every fortnight. The rep for the firm was Dick Webb (5449) an ex Manager from Derbyshire.

Wingerworth Coking Plant

Wingerworth coking plant (Derbyshire) reached full production at 2,200 tons a day.


Lodge (Nottinghamshire) output reached a record weekly output of 5,646 tons and a highest for the year at 221,394 tons produced by 459 men.

Mapperley (Derbyshire) weekly record reached 9,182 tons.

Calverton (Nottinghamshire) had its highest ever manpower of 1,447 and a yearly output of 932,021 tons in 1958.

Shearer Fell Down Unknown Old Shaft

Around this period a face at Swanwick (Derbyshire) ran into an unknown shaft and the Anderton shearer machine fell into the hole and was lost. Not much was known about the incident, or spoken about, and was only related to me by my friend Ralph Simpson, who at the time was a Cost Accountant. The machine was written off. Fortunately no injuries were incurred.

The Opencast Coal Act 1958 came into force and the opencast workings operated under this Act until the 1980s.

Opencast Sites: Region No5 (North Midlands)
  • Agnes Threequarters, Tupton, Piper, Deep Soft, Deep Hard, Roof Soft, Chavery, 1st Ell, 2nd, 3rd and 4th Waterloo
  • Alfred Sleet Main Brights, Low Brights, Two Foot, Brinsley Thin, High Hazels
  • Alfreton Brickworks 2nd Waterloo, Feb 1958
  • All Saints Low Main seam; Amberley Farm Kilburn fin 8th Feb 1958
  • Ark 1st and 2nd Waterloo, 1st and 2nd Ell, Chavery, Flockton (Deep Soft), old works of 1852
  • Argyle House Dunsil, 1st Ell
  • Astain Dunsil, Top Hard, 1st and 2nd Waterloo
  • Avenue/Bottle Mickley, Ashgate
  • Birchin Lee Farm Ashgate seam
  • Brickyard Deep Soft
  • Brim 1st, 2nd and 3rd Waterloo, Waterloo Marker, 1st and 2nd Ell, Chavery, Deep Hard, Piper
  • Broad Lane 2nd and 3rd Waterloo, Floor Coal, Dunsil
  • Broomridding Top Hard, Dunsil, 1st, 2nd and 3rd Waterloo
  • Calow-Herne Zone Deep Hard, Tupton, Threequarters, Silkstone, 2nd Waterloo, 1st and 2nd Ell, Chavery, Deep Soft, Deep Hard, 2nd Piper, Hospital, yard, Thin coal
  • Cock Alley (near Calow Green Farm) Deep Soft, Deep Hard, 1st Piper, Hospital, Tupton 4’ 0” (1.2m); Yard, Thin coal
  • Elm Terrace Top Hard, Dunsil, 1st Waterloo
  • Everbridge 1st and 2nd Ell, Flockton
  • Handley Wood Deep Hard, SK440500, 375450
  • Hepthorn Deep Soft
  • Hobsic Coombes, Top Hard, Floor coal, Dunsil, 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th Waterloo,
    1st and 2nd Ell
  • Holmgate Tupton, Threequarter, Yard cannel
  • Ireland Fox Earth, Sough, Furnace, Brinsley Thin
  • The Limes Tupton and Threequarter 16th Aug
  • Lodge Farm 1st Piper 5’ 10” (1.78m) – Dec 1958
  • Macfez I Coombs, Top Hard, Floor coal, 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th Waterloo, and II Floor, Sath coals 9/4/1958
  • Merrians Deep Hard, 1st and 2nd Piper, Cockleshell, Tupton, Three Quarter, Silkstone
  • Moor Farm 1st and 2nd Waterloo, 1st and 2nd Ell, Chavery, Flockton, Deep Hard, 1st Piper, Tupton, Three Quarters, Yard, Silkstone
  • Mosborough (JW Fidler) from outcrop to old workings, Sep 1958
  • Pingle Hill 3rd and 4th Waterloo, 1st Ell
  • Plantation seam above Top Hard, Coombes, Top Hard, Dunsil
  • Poplar Farm seam above Top Hard; Top Hard, Coombes, Dunsil, 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th Waterloo, 1st Ell
  • Roman Road and Amberley Farm Silkstone and Kilburn
  • Sawpit Top Hard, Floor coal, Dunsil, 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th Waterloo, 2nd Ell
  • Sheep Lane Deep Soft, Deep Hard, Piper
  • Shipley Common Coombe, Top Hard, Dunsil
  • Spawcroft Top Hard, Dunsil
  • Starvehim Valley Hospital, Deep Hard, Deep Soft, Tupton, Three Quarters, Silkstone, Ashgate, Mickley
  • Straw Lane 1st Piper
  • Tinklers Roof Soft, Deep Soft, Deep Hard, Tupton, Three Quarters
  • Upper Delves Extension Piper seam
  • Watson Top Hard, Dunsil, 1st Waterloo
  • Woodspring Dunsil, 1st Waterloo, 1st Ell.

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Pit Terminology - Glossary