Mine exploration, photographs and mining history for mine explorers, industrial archaeologists, researchers and historians Mine explorer and mining history videos on YouTube Connect with other mine explorers on Facebook
Tip: do not include 'mine' or 'quarry', search by name e.g. 'cwmorthin', use 'Sounds like search' if unsure of spelling

Advanced Search
'Sounds like search'
Quick a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z
Tip: narrow down your search by typing more than one word and selecting 'Search for all words' or 'Exact search'

Search for any word
Search for all words
Exact search
Tip: narrow down your search by typing more than one word and selecting 'Search for all words' or 'Exact search'

Search for any word
Search for all words
Exact search

Mine Exploration Forum

Jump to page << < 1 2 3 > >>
Author Who had it the best?
SimonRL

Avatar of SimonRL

Joined: 27/11/2005
Location: North Wales

View Profile
View Posts
View Personal Album
View Personal Files
View all Photos
Send Private Message
Who had it the best?
Posted: 22/12/2014 14:14:54
Reply |  Quote
I seem to remember asking this question back in 2009!

But Dickie Bird's fantastic photos have prompted the thought again...

Which was the best decade for mine explorers?

In the 60, 70s and 80s there were more recently closed sites and decades less deterioration, vandalism and collapse... And possibly fewer access issues.

Nowadays we've got super-bright and lightweight lamps, digital cameras; modern SRT kit, lightweight drills etc.

So, who did have it the best and when?

I can't help but think I'd trade modern kit for the chance to see parts of the Welsh slate industry that have either collapsed or been quarried away.

Discuss Wink

--

my orders are to sit here and watch the world go by
IP: 95.148.15.137 Edited: 22/12/2014 14:34:45 by SimonRL
Wormster

Avatar of Wormster

Joined: 15/08/2006
Location: Top of the Mendip Hills

View Profile
View Posts
View Personal Album
View Personal Files
View all Photos
Send Private Message
Who had it the best?
Posted: 22/12/2014 18:52:22
Reply |  Quote
I certainly don't want to go back to the "Owd Days" of lighting with my Owd Boy - fricking candles! modern lighting is the way to go.

Having seen most of North Wales decay over the last 40 years has been an interesting experience, I managed to see some places not long after closing, or luckily in a few "special" cases still working, or at least in care and maintenance.

I think we're very lucky to have ALL the technology to hand, it gives us more "dwell time" in the places we choose to go with a lot more security than we had aeons ago, (hemp ladders, stinkies, homemade wetsuits etc)

Until some cleverdick invents time travel, we're stuck where we are, in the present watching it all sloowwllyyyy be retaken by the biggest show on earth - Mother Nature!

--

Better to regret something you have done - than to regret something you have not done.
IP: 86.169.176.180
John Lawson

Joined: 09/12/2010
Location: Castle Douglas Dumfries & Galloway

View Profile
View Posts
View Personal Album
View Personal Files
View all Photos
Send Private Message
Who had it the best?
Posted: 22/12/2014 19:13:10
Reply |  Quote
Picking up Simon's point, in the 60's when Industrial Archaeology was just beginning, wet suits were just being home made, we all thought it was the beginning of a new age of a different type of exploration.i.e. Mine exploration.
Now some 50 years on the picture is somewhat different.
We have new, reliable, technical, gear and the knowledge where disused mines are and what is required to look inside them.
Progress in exploration still lies ahead of us, it might mean more effort is required to make these major brake throughs, but since each decade has its own discoveries, there is no real golden decade.
IP: 109.150.73.150
exspelio

Joined: 02/05/2012
Location: peak district

View Profile
View Posts
View Personal Album
View Personal Files
View all Photos
Send Private Message
Who had it the best?
Posted: 22/12/2014 19:56:37
Reply |  Quote
John Lawson wrote:

Picking up Simon's point, in the 60's when Industrial Archaeology was just beginning, wet suits were just being home made, we all thought it was the beginning of a new age of a different type of exploration.i.e. Mine exploration.
Now some 50 years on the picture is somewhat different.
We have new, reliable, technical, gear and the knowledge where disused mines are and what is required to look inside them.
Progress in exploration still lies ahead of us, it might mean more effort is required to make these major brake throughs, but since each decade has its own discoveries, there is no real golden decade.


Tend to agree with John L.; in the '60's', clothing was coming into its own, but our mines were just scraped out lead veins for flourspar (Matlock Bath, No Logic); 70's, barytes was king for the oil industry (Long Rake); 80's, concentration and more logical and economical mining for the lucrative minerals (Laporte - Glebe); before these, Coal, Private or Nationalised?---

---What are you asking for?, mining or mine exploration?.
What Minerals Mined?

Granddad was a Lead Miner, Dad was a collier, I was a spar miner - the 'Golden age' could be still to come whilst some of us are still breathing!

--

Always remember, nature is in charge, get it wrong and it is you who suffers!.
IP: 86.170.176.103
remoteneeded

Avatar of remoteneeded

Joined: 12/11/2007
Location: MK

View Profile
View Posts
View Personal Album
View Personal Files
View all Photos
Send Private Message
Who had it the best?
Posted: 22/12/2014 20:17:30
Reply |  Quote
It's an interesting question. We may have brighter lights now and digital cameras but has this made our photographs better? Comparing Dickie Bird's photographs to their modern equaivalents it would be easy to conclude that technology has made things worse. Having said that I dare say we're lugging a lot less weight in our bags. There may have been more accessible places in the 1970's but were they as easy to know about and find as they are now with sites like this? I think there isn't really a best era, they are merely different. IP: 88.97.52.152 Edited: 22/12/2014 20:17:59 by remoteneeded
RJV

Avatar of RJV

Joined: 16/03/2008
Location: Cleveland

View Profile
View Posts
View Personal Album
View Personal Files
View all Photos
Send Private Message
Who had it the best?
Posted: 22/12/2014 20:28:55
Reply |  Quote
remoteneeded wrote:

We may have brighter lights now and digital cameras but has this made our photographs better? Comparing Dickie Bird's photographs to their modern equaivalents it would be easy to conclude that technology has made things worse.

Or comparing Dickie's photos to other archive shots another conclusion could be that Dickie is a simply rather a better photographer than most! Smile

Digital has mega, huge benefits in one way even if the image does sometimes suffer. You can walk around a mine with a fifty quid digital camera & a twenty quid torch and be confident that you'll get usable (if not necessarily award winning) photographs of everything you try to take a picture of. That wouldn't be the case with film & flash.
IP: 82.19.131.200
exspelio

Joined: 02/05/2012
Location: peak district

View Profile
View Posts
View Personal Album
View Personal Files
View all Photos
Send Private Message
Who had it the best?
Posted: 22/12/2014 20:39:04
Reply |  Quote
But there again, is Mine exploration all about Photo's ??

--

Always remember, nature is in charge, get it wrong and it is you who suffers!.
IP: 86.170.176.103
RJV

Avatar of RJV

Joined: 16/03/2008
Location: Cleveland

View Profile
View Posts
View Personal Album
View Personal Files
View all Photos
Send Private Message
Who had it the best?
Posted: 22/12/2014 20:44:50
Reply |  Quote
exspelio wrote:

But there again, is Mine exploration all about Photo's ??

Not sure that anybody us suggesting it is, it was merely one of the aspects mentioned in the original thread.
IP: 82.145.222.65
remoteneeded

Avatar of remoteneeded

Joined: 12/11/2007
Location: MK

View Profile
View Posts
View Personal Album
View Personal Files
View all Photos
Send Private Message
Who had it the best?
Posted: 22/12/2014 21:00:24
Reply |  Quote
RJV wrote:

Or comparing Dickie's photos to other archive shots another conclusion could be that Dickie is a simply rather a better photographer than most! Smile

Absolutely! Photographers take photos, not cameras, and Dickie is one hell of a photographer. Happy Christmas to us Big Grin
IP: 88.97.52.152
mistericeman

Joined: 04/10/2009
Location: Ashton-under-Lyne (Manchester)

View Profile
View Posts
View Personal Album
View Personal Files
View all Photos
Send Private Message
Who had it the best?
Posted: 22/12/2014 21:52:53
Reply |  Quote
My favourite time was the late 70's ....
being taken underground in Rhoysdd ....(9-5)after him spending weeks on the Plas Tan Y Bwylch industrial archeology courses .

Sparked a massive interest in me that has enabled me to return the favour latterly .

Special times ......That I'll never forget .
IP: 82.31.98.113
Brakeman

Avatar of Brakeman

Joined: 10/10/2007
Location: Cheshire

View Profile
View Posts
View Personal Album
View Personal Files
View all Photos
Send Private Message
Who had it the best?
Posted: 22/12/2014 22:38:27
Reply |  Quote
My favourite period was the 1980's, this was when I first got interested in exploring old mines, lead mines of Derbyshire ,the copper mines of Alderley & the recently closed spar mines both Calcite & Fluorite , even better was being allowed into the still working Sallet Hole & the new Milldam & visiting some the NCB super pits .

Photography though was not our main aim, it just played a small part, it was just simply exploring finding out just how far some of these mines went & just looking at what equipment & artefacts remained. Sadly some of these mines we explored are no longer accessible today,mainly due to poor ground & subsequent collapses....

--

The management thanks you for your co operation.
IP: 62.255.110.110
4737carlin

Avatar of 4737carlin

Joined: 16/05/2011
Location: New Brighton

View Profile
View Posts
View Personal Album
View Personal Files
View all Photos
Send Private Message
Who had it the best?
Posted: 22/12/2014 22:59:30
Reply |  Quote
How much harder was it for people to find information and the exact location of mines to explore in the 70s? These days its heavily documented on the internet, and its easy to make a "want list" of the best mines to visit and how to find them. How did people go about it back then?
The research side of things I'm sure i would of enjoyed and its lost now to a quick look on the web.

Today if you cant find the information yourself online you can find someone who can point you in the right direction without difficulty. When i started to explore (tunnels) back in 2003 most of the disused railway tunnels in my area i knew about with my local knowledge, but if i wanted to find tunnels away from the North West it was a bit more time consuming, and in someways more interesting because you had to research it yourself, with old maps...etc The internet helped to a lesser extent than it would now, the old email based discussion groups and the Dark Places forum were the first online sources i came across.
What was the best sources of information for mines prior to the web?
IP: 94.194.72.68
Peter Burgess

Joined: 01/07/2008
Location: Merstham. Or is it Godstone ...... ?

View Profile
View Posts
View Personal Album
View Personal Files
View all Photos
Send Private Message
Who had it the best?
Posted: 22/12/2014 23:04:17
Reply |  Quote
In the 70s/80s for me, it was simply a case of collecting the various books for the region that I visited most frequently - Devon and Cornwall. Even so, we never really met up with many of the local explorers, and probably would have struggled to find out who they were anyway. This effectively limited us to the few places that had been written about in the more popular books.


--

The most useful idiot you can ever hope to meet...
IP: 92.23.61.176
christwigg

Avatar of christwigg

Joined: 20/02/2008
Location: Cleveland / North Yorkshire

View Profile
View Posts
View Personal Album
View Personal Files
View all Photos
Send Private Message
Who had it the best?
Posted: 23/12/2014 12:14:10
Reply |  Quote
Peter Burgess wrote:

This effectively limited us to the few places that had been written about in the more popular books.


Despite the easier access to the information these days, this still exists today. If you don't know an area, then you're probably going to look for the mine with the most photos on the site.

But looking at current stats, even after nearly 10 years only 3892 out of 14527 have any content added.

Whilst the majority of those remaining may be completely obliterated, there are sure to be some absolute gems of places out there where no-one has ever properly looked for us and the next generation to find.

Even Roy hasn't looked everywhere Laugh

IP: 145.8.104.65 Edited: 23/12/2014 12:17:00 by christwigg
exspelio

Joined: 02/05/2012
Location: peak district

View Profile
View Posts
View Personal Album
View Personal Files
View all Photos
Send Private Message
Who had it the best?
Posted: 23/12/2014 12:27:15
Reply |  Quote
Back in the '60's was when I started, guy called Don Walker took me down the Matlock Bath mines, he learn't by word of mouth, and transmitted the info to me the same way.

Come the early '70's, PDMHS started publishing surveys, the college photocopier got some use then!

Mid '70's contact with Don lapsed when he realised I was likely to be the guy who rescued him.

Throughout the '80's worked down Sallet Hole mining flourspar.

My 'golden decade' was the '60's - exploration without information, -adventure and ignorance - can't be beaten - never to be regained Sad

I think this interweb thingy makes things too easy and takes the adventure out of it.

--

Always remember, nature is in charge, get it wrong and it is you who suffers!.
IP: 86.170.176.103
christwigg

Avatar of christwigg

Joined: 20/02/2008
Location: Cleveland / North Yorkshire

View Profile
View Posts
View Personal Album
View Personal Files
View all Photos
Send Private Message
Who had it the best?
Posted: 23/12/2014 12:47:14
Reply |  Quote
exspelio wrote:


My 'golden decade' was the '60's - exploration without information, -adventure and ignorance - can't be beaten - never to be regained Sad


I don't think that's necessarily true, referring back to my previous point. The only things the internet 'knows' are what people tell it.

Go a little off-piste and you'll still find areas with no books, no maps and virtually no historic documentation.




I admit small jet mines in Cleveland are never going to be the new Cwmorthin, but there is still plenty out there to be discovered.


IP: 145.8.104.65
Blober

Avatar of Blober

Joined: 16/12/2012
Location: Anglesey

View Profile
View Posts
View Personal Album
View Personal Files
View all Photos
Send Private Message
Who had it the best?
Posted: 23/12/2014 13:15:33
Reply |  Quote
I would have loved to seen these places before they became more derelict, or even seen some of the places when they were open.

The internet can direct you to the bigger places but trying to find information on smaller or off the beaten track places is neigh impossible still! Bar maybe a few scraps or the odd photo some passerby has taken.





--

FILTH
IP: 95.172.232.42
Morrisey

Joined: 25/09/2009

View Profile
View Posts
View Personal Album
View Personal Files
View all Photos
Send Private Message
Who had it the best?
Posted: 23/12/2014 13:43:14
Reply |  Quote
Present day for me. There's still boat loads of long forgotten mines that are waiting to be found and explored.

I'm fortunate to live in a part of the country that still has lots to offer on the 'virgin' mine front. The beauty of the internet is having access to old geol plans and the like that if you take the time to study then put the legwork in, then sooner or later you will reap the rewards in entering work places that were abandoned up to a century ago.

Let the adventure beginThumbs Up


IP: 212.41.133.65
Boy Engineer

Joined: 20/06/2008
Location: Derby

View Profile
View Posts
View Personal Album
View Personal Files
View all Photos
Send Private Message
Who had it the best?
Posted: 23/12/2014 13:57:10
Reply |  Quote


Is this a variant where you slip a ferret down a drift and see what pops into the net? Off Topic
IP: 80.177.35.242
royfellows

Avatar of royfellows

Joined: 13/06/2007
Location: Great Wyrley near Walsall

View Profile
View Posts
View Personal Album
View Personal Files
View all Photos
Send Private Message
Who had it the best?
Posted: 23/12/2014 14:48:33
Reply |  Quote
Morrisey wrote:

Present day for me. There's still boat loads of long forgotten mines that are waiting to be found and explored



Dead right, but you have to work for it.


--

The expert in anything is really the true beginner, by becoming an expert so the knowledge for self advancement is acquired.
IP: 92.9.36.171
Jump to page << < 1 2 3 > >>
Safety LED Miners Caplamps Moore Books: Specialist Books I.A. Recordings: Mining and Industrial History DVDs Starless River - Caving Store Explore a Disused Welsh Slate Mine
Disclaimer: Mine exploring can be quite dangerous, but then again it can be alright, it all depends on the weather. Please read the proper disclaimer.
© 2005 to 2015 AditNow.co.uk
Top of Page