Pits Around Nottingham.


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I only stayed on a few months after I'd finished my apprenticeship Mick and moved on, I did later go underground with BG, but gypsum is not harmful, diesel fumes are though...Cough, cough...LOL Then I worked for a while down Boulby where they mined potash, again not harmful to health, but it is radioactive!! Now that is harmful.

Then spent 10 years in the NSW coal industry, but lung disease is so rare in their industry!! I never heard of anyone who retired with black lung down there. We also had to have mandatory two year medicals and X rays to keep our jobs.

Anthracite is the most dangerous coal to work in!

I tried at all times when on the face to always wear dust masks, seems to have paid off as my lungs are still clear of dust damage.

Machines and conveyor delivery points all had dust suppression sprays on them, our coal in Australia was soaking wet by the time it reached the surface, that's how much emphasis they placed on dust suppression. Mostly for health reasons and also to prevent a dust explosion.

My knees took a toll though!!!

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Any of the older members work "dahn pit".??? I worked for Lord Robens during the 60's at Clifton, then when it closed on to Cotgrave. Remember all those headstocks around Nottingham? Babbington, Gedl

Funny I was gonna post a thread on Pits. Thanks Anyone got an image of the old Clifton Colliery? I can remeber it being there when I came to Nottingham in 63

There is some radioactive substances in coal as well. It can come out of power station chimneys! I once read that coal fired power stations released more radioactivity into the environment than nuclear power stations in the UK. I don't know if that is true or not.

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Having worked on both Magnox & AGR type nuclears, I'd bet the above could well be correct, all fuel rods for nuclears either charged or spent are completely sealed, there's no radioactivity in the water discharged in to the sea after cooling, 'cos the water cools the non radiological side of the power station condensers etc

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Probably true Brian, not to mention mercury, cadmium and other heavy metals, I often wondered why power stations had very high fences around flyash tips and hazard warning signs all around them!!

When I worked down Boulby, the Rock Mechanics assistants, (samplers) used a ICI designed and produced digital monitor with a long cable and probe that fitted on the end of a bamboo cane, each length of cane would have a screw ferrule to extend the probes reach, each can was a measured length that I don't now recall.

A drill rig, same ones that drill shotholes in the faces, would drill a long probe hole for sampling and the sampler would put the probe down the hole, not the distance in his notebook and take a reading from the digital sampling device. He would take several readings down each hole in the faces.

One day I asked one of the Rock Mechanics what the samplers were reading in the sample holes... Radioactivity, he said and explained the sampling instrument was a calibrated radioactivity meter.... YIKES!!!!

Shortly after this I was reading an article in the EEPTU paper about "Daughters of Radon" in hard rock mines, namely the tin mines in Cornwall, to which I showed to our union shop steward... This raised alarm bells, the company said they knew about the problem but still went ahead and brought in a mining engineer from Newcastle University to do some sampling for both the workforce and management.

We had Radon in measurable levels underground, but as long as ventilation levels were maintained at the present levels, there was no danger..

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  • 2 years later...

BTW, if there are any ex pit lads who read the posts, or anyone with any mining input, be it actual history, or anything to do with the mining industry, my chat forum is http://coalmine.proboards23.com/

John

I go on your site as Gaz.

I worked at Newstead , Annesley and a short time at Bilsthorpe,

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  • 3 years later...
On 6/29/2012 at 10:34 AM, mick2me said:

Is there a mining museum?

 

Had a brilliant day at the mining museum at Caphouse near Wakefield, went on the underground tour, first time I'd been down a pit for decades. It was freezing cold down there. We went down to a very clean & tidy & quite pit bottom, no hissing of compressed air. We went down an old roadway with herring bone roofing, then on a static face with a trepanner, an AB16 shearer & a double ended ranging drum shearer, also saw dosco's & a dinting machine's up short headings, there was a haulage engine, a stage loader & conveyor belt transfer point. There were some parts bratice clothed off where they were making some more exhibits. Was a great day out & want to go again.. 

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Can anyone point me in the right direction (preferably an online resource) to find maps showing the Clifton pit workings superimposed on a normal map. In the Tollerton aerodrome thread someone posted that the Clifton pit 41 face/workings went under Tollerton aerodrome. I'd like to see a map showing the area around and including the aerodrome with what pit workings lie underneath (be it from Clifton pit or other pit workings). Can anyone help?

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On 6/29/2012 at 7:59 PM, BulwellBrian said:

There is some radioactive substances in coal as well. It can come out of power station chimneys! I once read that coal fired power stations released more radioactivity into the environment than nuclear power stations in the UK. I don't know if that is true or not.

 

When on a trip round Hinkley Point Nuclear power station we were stood at side of a live reactor & I asked how much extra radiation we were getting from it = she gave me a geiger counter. I pointed it at the reactor & it didn't move from the background level, pointed at a lump of coke & it moved a bit, pointed at an old gas mantle & it went off the scale, same with a luminous watch, pointed at my digital watch & it went 1/4 way up the scale, GULP...

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On 6/30/2012 at 0:29 AM, BulwellBrian said:

There is some radioactive substances in coal as well. It can come out of power station chimneys! I once read that coal fired power stations released more radioactivity into the environment than nuclear power stations in the UK. I don't know if that is true or not.

I spent 42yrs as a steeplejack, and have worked at the top of every power station chimney along the Trent valley, and a good few others besides, and uptill now i don't glow in the dark or have two head's. So I would say from my experience, that that statement is not true!!.

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Coal powered stations emitting more radiation than nuclear is an urban myth but there is a grain of truth in it. Coal contains Ra226 which is radioactive. This does not die when the coal is burnt - it remains in the fly ash and gypsum by products that are used in building components. The waste from nuclear is very tightly controlled, fly ash and gypsum are not so the 'accumulated' radioactivity released into the environment is greater for coal than nuclear. Still at very low levels though.

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John..... We regards to Radon.  It is not only down the mines.  It is found in the rocks here in Ga and can find its way into houses via the foundations.  The govt provide a free test kit if you want it.  It samples the air in the house for a few days and is then sent to their labs for testing.  We didn't have any measurable amount, but I was glad to test it.  Apparently plenty of houses do have some Radon present.  The cure is just to increase ventilation.  Houses are so tightly sealed these days in the interests of energy conservation.  There are measurable increases in cancer in some places.  Thought to be radiation induced.

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Can anyone remember a model of Clifton pit inside Wollaton Hall?

 

The model included a cross section through, showing tunnels going underneath the Trent.

Is it still there, the model that is? Thinking about, I wonder if the tunnels are still there or would they have just collapsed over time?

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Yes I recall it, and it's in the basement of Wollaton hall, it has sustained some damage.

Some years back I contacted Wollaton Hall and one of the gentlemen there went into the basement and photographed the model for me, I had a web site and was given permission to use those photos as long as I acknowledged the source.

I served most of my apprenticeship down Clifton Colliery right up until it was closed in 1968, the mine will now be flooded, as such most roads will now be closed up solid.

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Brew, I'm not aware of any radiation produced from coal fired stations, but coal has some very nasty heavy metals in it which are released by burning, try mercury, cadmium and arsenic, also traces of precious metals have been found in coal, including gold. I was reading about a contractor in the UK who bought the rights to a very large coal slag heap, they are processing it to recover gold!!

 

Dave, yes I'm aware of radon seeping into basements of houses over here. I found out about radon from the EETPU when I was working at Boulby, it appeared members of the union working at the Wheal Jane tin mine in Cornwall were worried about it, as they had lots of the gas down there, I brought it up at a union meeting at Boulby. The owners of CPL at the time brought an expert in from Newcastle University Dept of Mining, who carried out tests in both the east and south workings. He did find quantities of the gas, but was satisfied that if the levels of ventilation we had were continued, there was no health problems.

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I take it they still had pit ponies up to the closer? The reason I ask is, I went to Roland Green school, and remember the ponies running like crazy in that field next to the happeny  bridge. I was told that they were excited by coming out of the pit. Is this right?

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Fewkest, all mine abandonment plans are now held by the Coal Authority in Mansfield, they are on a long term quest to digitize them all with a very expensive scanner.

You can purchase copies from them, they used to be twelve quid a sheet, BUT, there is a very expensive search fee, you can avoid that by doing your own search for the plans you want from their catalogue.

Clifton's deep hard workings, namely 41's face did go under Tollerton airport, and extensive workings under West Bridgford in the Piper and Deep Hard seam workings. They also worked as far south west as Ruddington in the Deep hard seam 12's and 10's faces, and further west in the Piper and Tupton seams. Tuptons 51's, 52's and 53's faces. Pipers were 19's? 20's? 21's?? not sure of the face numbers as before my time.

 

Cotgrave's furthest northerly workings were in the Deep Hard seam and were about 300 yards short of Clifton's 41's old face.

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Correct Waddo, they only had about six ponies all the time I worked there, they were brought up for two weeks each year at the pit shutdown in summer. They were well treated, had to be, the Ostler would have skinned any supply lad who mistreated them.

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2 hours ago, Ayupmeducks said:

Fewkest, all mine abandonment plans are now held by the Coal Authority in Mansfield, they are on a long term quest to digitize them all with a very expensive scanner.

You can purchase copies from them, they used to be twelve quid a sheet, BUT, there is a very expensive search fee, you can avoid that by doing your own search for the plans you want from their catalogue.

Clifton's deep hard workings, namely 41's face did go under Tollerton airport, and extensive workings under West Bridgford in the Piper and Deep Hard seam workings. They also worked as far south west as Ruddington in the Deep hard seam 12's and 10's faces, and further west in the Piper and Tupton seams. Tuptons 51's, 52's and 53's faces. Pipers were 19's? 20's? 21's?? not sure of the face numbers as before my time.

 

Cotgrave's furthest northerly workings were in the Deep Hard seam and were about 300 yards short of Clifton's 41's old face.

Thanks very much for this - I shall make contact with them and see how long it will be before digital copies are available. The reason I ask is I live very close to Tollerton Airport and I want to know if there are mine workings under my property. With regard to what you said about Cotgrave's Deep Hard seam, do you mean they could have joined up with Clifton's 41 face had they continued a further 300yds? Would this have been a bad thing? Would they have actively avoided such a join-up happening for safety/practical reasons?  

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They don't sell digital copies, only printed copies as far as I know, they are scanning and saving digital copies for their records, as what I was told is that many of the very old abandonment plans are in a sad state.

If all you want is to examine them, you can make an appointment and look at the relevant plans at their offices for a small fee.

Around 1966/7ish, plans were on the drawing board to drive a road from Cotgrave to meet up with 41's main gate to establish an emergency escape route for both collieries, it never materialized.

One of Cotgraves faces stopped short by 300 yards or so to leave a safety barrier, Clifton would have been flooded at that time.

 

I just checked the plans, Cotgrave had three faces that mined under Tollerton air field and to the northwest. Clifton's 41's face actually was about 100 yards south of the runways and directly under Tollerton village itself.

Hope that helps.

A lot of Cotgraves deep hard seam workings were around that area, so building a house could be risky!!

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22 hours ago, Ayupmeducks said:

Yes I recall it, and it's in the basement of Wollaton hall, it has sustained some damage.

Some years back I contacted Wollaton Hall and one of the gentlemen there went into the basement and photographed the model for me, I had a web site and was given permission to use those photos as long as I acknowledged the source.

I served most of my apprenticeship down Clifton Colliery right up until it was closed in 1968, the mine will now be flooded, as such most roads will now be closed up solid.

Wouldn't it be nice if the powers that be at Wollaton Hall moved the model back to public view or perhaps offered it to the Castle Museum or some other place, thus allowing the people of Nottingham to see what things were like 'in the old days' I wonder if the damage occurred whilst it was in 'storage' or was this the reason for it being removed? I seem to remember that it was well protected from potential damage by a transparent casing. An educational gem sadly locked away.....

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