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Author Deepest coal shaft in UK
carnkie

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Joined: 07/09/2007
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Deepest coal shaft in UK
Posted: 06/10/2008 22:08:31
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Just natural curiosity. Is this correct:
'The deepest coal mine shaft ever sunk in the UK was to 1400m at Clock Face Colliery, St.Helens Area, Lancashire.'


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grahami

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Joined: 29/01/2007
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Deepest coal shaft in UK
Posted: 07/10/2008 09:35:55
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I always understood that it was the Parsonage Pit, at Leigh, in Lancashire which had the deepest shaft. Regreattably I havn't any hard info to hand, but the following extract from Hansard is interesting, as it was written in 1934 - and Parsonage was still going strong in the 1960's...

"On 6th February I asked a question of the Secretary for Mines regarding Parsonage Colliery in Lancashire which had attained a depth of over 4,000 feet, and in which workmen were complaining of the excessive heat. The Secretary for Mines, in his reply stated that no complaints by workmen had been brought to his notice. With regard to the depth, the answer given by the Secretary for Mines on 14th November was that the deepest pit was 3,750 feet. On 6th February, in reply to this question, he said that the depth of the Parsonage Pit was 3,850 feet. It had increased in depth by 100 feet since the previous answer. The information I have is that this pit is more than 4,000 feet in depth. The shaft itself is 1,000 yards deep. Then there is a brow of 1,800 yards which dips one in five, and calculating on that basis, it puts the depth well over 4,000 feet. The coal face extends further. That is the vertical depth from the surface to the underground worker. The 474 previous Commission said that 4,000 feet was the limit of practical working, and that at that point it was almost impossible for men to work with any degree of comfort. Therefore, they gave the opinion that when that point was reached something ought to be done. The position is that at that depth, without any ventilation, the temperature is 115° Fahrenheit. With all the artificial conditions prevailing at the present time—and they are doing the best that can be done at that colliery, and one is not complaining about that matter—on 12th October last year, when the pit was not as deep as now, we got a measurement there of 103° Fahrenheit, and the top measurement was 103° Fahrenheit. Therefore, one can get an idea of the conditions under which the men are working."

For comparison, Astley Grenn's No.1 shaft was 2571 ft deep to the sump. - Mind you they did 90 second winds with twelve tubs in a three deck cage......

Grahami

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toadstone

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Joined: 10/09/2007
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Deepest coal shaft in UK
Posted: 07/10/2008 10:15:42
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According to Paul L Younger FREng. Director, Sir Joseph Swan Institute for Energy Research at Newcastle University. Clock Face is the deepest shaft in the UK. Not that learned gentleman are always right. With modern surveying, laser and the like it might not be the case.

The article I found was one he gave to Gateshead Metropolitan Borough council's First Annual Thomas Hepburn Memorial Lectures. entitled "Underground coal gasification: our last best chance of making it to a sustainable energy future?  "

Interestingly he quotes Aneurin Bevan at the beginning.
"This island is made mainly of coal and surrounded by fish. 
Only an organising genius could produce a shortage of coal 
and fish in Great Britain at the same time".

Not now of course but must have been a hell of a quote at the time Laugh
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carnkie

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Deepest coal shaft in UK
Posted: 07/10/2008 10:20:50
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Thanks for all that Graham. Very interesting. The quote I used came from here but thought it best to check it out.

[link]

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Mr.C

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Deepest coal shaft in UK
Posted: 07/10/2008 11:16:33
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I think you'll find that the deepest coal shaft in the UK was Wolstanton No. 2 at 1046m.
The figure of 1400m at Clockface is possibly the working depth?

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IP: 91.111.172.206 Edited: 07/10/2008 11:19:29 by Mr.C
carnkie

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Deepest coal shaft in UK
Posted: 07/10/2008 11:26:31
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toadstone wrote:

Interestingly he quotes Aneurin Bevan at the beginning.
"This island is made mainly of coal and surrounded by fish. 
Only an organising genius could produce a shortage of coal 
and fish in Great Britain at the same time".

Not now of course but must have been a hell of a quote at the time Laugh


Not quite the same thing but the quote could easily relate to late 19th century Cornwall. The mining collapsed and the pilchards vanished. Enter many many years of severe economic depression. Not that I'm suggesting one could organise the pilchards but eggs and baskets.........

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stuey

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Deepest coal shaft in UK
Posted: 07/10/2008 11:37:19
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Was the underground coal gas man suggesting that measures too deep to work could be set fire to centralia style, then producer gas pulled out of an upcast shaft?

I read something about this a long time ago.

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Ben Fisher

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Deepest coal shaft in UK
Posted: 07/10/2008 23:27:38
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Mr.C wrote:

I think you'll find that the deepest coal shaft in the UK was Wolstanton No. 2 at 1046m.

The very deep shaft at Wolstanton (I've a notion that it was no. 3? Could be wrong) was sunk in the late 1950s as part of the project to link up a number of North Staffs pits underground; I've seen it quoted at 3,750 ft. I used to live in Wolstanton and it was always quoted locally (not least by my Geography teacher!) as the deepest in Europe, not just UK.

Now it's a run-down retail park... Sad
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Mr.C

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Deepest coal shaft in UK
Posted: 07/10/2008 23:34:23
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Pretty certain it was No2 - mate was one of the shaftsmen - I'm still using the hat & lamp from there!
I must admit I'd forgotten but I think you're right, it was the deepest in Europe.
The redevelopment you mention was at the expense of Sneyd, much to my grandfathers disgust. He was foreman Blacksmith there & (in a situation unique I think to the potteries), also responsible for the shafts.
Prior to the redevelopment, Sneyd prided itself as the epitome of modernity - "nowt but a bloody Gin Pit" was how he refered to Wolstanton - it was however next to a main line railway!
Wolstanton of course took coal eventually from Hanley Deep & Whitfield - not that it saved it from Mag the bag Cursing
Anyroad - at ow rayt duck?

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If things dunner change - the'll stop as the' are.
IP: 91.111.172.206 Edited: 07/10/2008 23:51:16 by Mr.C
grahami

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Deepest coal shaft in UK
Posted: 08/10/2008 09:22:32
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Gin Pit was a colliery and colliery village near Tyldesley in Lancashire. The village is still there -
[link]
How did the "Gin Pit" become a term of approbation?


Grahami

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JR

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Deepest coal shaft in UK
Posted: 08/10/2008 13:14:37
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I'd guess from 'horse gins' (gin being a contraction of engine) used in early pits to raise and lower in and out of the shaft. These would be small scale, shallow operations. Hence calling a mechanised mine a 'gin pit' is saying that it's small and low tech.

Smile

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carnkie

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Deepest coal shaft in UK
Posted: 08/10/2008 13:45:56
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grahami wrote:

Gin Pit was a colliery and colliery village near Tyldesley in Lancashire. The village is still there -
[link]
How did the "Gin Pit" become a term of approbation?


Grahami


Perhaps it was prior to this. William Hogarth?

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Buckhill

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Deepest coal shaft in UK
Posted: 08/10/2008 22:11:31
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Mr C is right - Wolstanton shafts, at the quoted depth, were the deepest in the UK.

The depth figures quoted for the Lancashire pits are for the workings only. Somewhere near me, under a mountain of paper, will be a list of shaft depths which I used a few months since on another forum. Unfortunately since then my other half has been pushing me to tidy up and I can't find a ***** thing when I need it. Confused
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Buckhill

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Deepest coal shaft in UK
Posted: 08/10/2008 22:24:02
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Just found that detail:

Wolstanton, originally 412m deep to work ironstone, deepened to 1042 (No2). The upcast was deeper still at 1047m.

Parsonage was the deepest in Lancashire at 905m.

The UK deepest is, however, Boulby Potash mine at 1150m.

The deepest western European shaft is, according to correspondence, Ibbenbueren in Germany at at "about" 1500m but I haven't confirmed that yet.
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Mr.C

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Deepest coal shaft in UK
Posted: 09/10/2008 15:33:38
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grahami wrote:

Gin Pit was a colliery and colliery village near Tyldesley in Lancashire. The village is still there -
[link]
How did the "Gin Pit" become a term of approbation?


Grahami

JR48 is right, a "gin pit" was a pit with just a horse gin for winding - though not of course literaly in this case!.

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If things dunner change - the'll stop as the' are.
IP: 91.111.172.206 Edited: 09/10/2008 15:35:15 by Mr.C
JR

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Deepest coal shaft in UK
Posted: 09/10/2008 20:04:17
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I've just noticed. I've clocked up 100 posts ! (It may not seem much to you but it's important to me. Perhaps I should get out more ?) Roll Eyes

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bdym123

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Deepest coal shaft in UK
Posted: 15/06/2011 00:02:56
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my understanding is that hem heath at 1062m was the deepest shaft sunk in europe. i worked there from 1985 to 1990 and can confirm it is a long way down. Smile IP: 79.69.96.188
Phil Ford

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Deepest coal shaft in UK
Posted: 15/06/2011 14:18:40
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Clock Face Colliery Shafts where just over 600yds deep. They where sunk down to the Wigan 4ft & 5ft seams the same as Sutton Manor next to it.
I have seen a referance stating that Clock was a lot deeper on a mines rescue history site, I sent them the information about Clockface but it has not been corrected.
The deepest coal shafts in Lancashire where Bold Colliery No 1 and No 3 shafts, they where 1,000 yds deep.
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AdM Michael

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Deepest coal shaft in UK
Posted: 15/06/2011 21:24:51
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Since you've already mentioned Ibbenbüren, Germany:

Oeyenhausenschacht 1 414,90 m
Oeyenhausenschacht 2 339,30 m
Oeyenhausenschacht 3 868,00 m
Theodorschacht 603,3 m
Nordschacht 1.545 m
Bockradener Schacht 391,1 m

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Graigfawr

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Deepest coal shaft in UK
Posted: 15/06/2011 21:31:29
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From Guinness Book of Records 1974, p.134: "Mines: United Kingdom. The all-time record depth is 4,132 ft (1,259 m) in the Arley Seam of the Parsonage Colliery, Leigh, Greater Manchester in Feb. 1949. The record in Scottish coalmines was 3,093 ft (942 m) in the Michael Colliery, Barncraiog, Fife, reached in August 1939. The deepest present mine workings are the Hem Heath Colliery (Moss Seam), Trentham, Staffordshire, England at 3,300 ft (1,005 m). The deepest in Scotland is the Great Seam at Monkton Hall Colliery, Millerhill, Midlothian at 2,930 ft (893 m). The deepest eve shaft in England, is that of the Cleveland Potash Ltd. at Boulby, North Yorkshire at 3,754 ft (1,144 m) completed in February 1973 and the deepest in Scotland was Monkton Hall No.1, Midlothian at 3,054 ft (930 m). The deepest Cornish tin mine was dolcoath mine, near Camborne. The William shaft was completed in 1910 to 550 fathoms (3,300 ft [1,005 m]) from adit or approximately 3,600 ft (1,097 m) from the surface." IP: 2.100.166.76
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