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Report - Clipstone Colliery, Nottinghamshire, Aug '12.

Discussion in 'Industrial Sites' started by Boba Low, Aug 18, 2012.

  1. Boba Low

    Boba Low ____/
    Regular User

    Aug 25, 2010
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    It had definitely been a few years coming but I finally managed to get my arse over to Clipstone to experience first-hand the monster headstocks that stand at 215 and 220ft respectively, supposedly the tallest in Europe. For a place that's been hit so bad over the years she still managed to deliver the goods - nice, big, filthy industry - I was proper black by the time we left. Like I said though, she's suffered. Every maker's plate in the place has been prized from the machinery (Metropolitan Vickers iircc for you anoraks), and huge sections of protective cases are strewn across the floor like so much lego, an impressive feat considering most of this machinery is far, far too heavy for a single man to lift. God only knows what lengths these guys go to in order to rip all the copper out of an engine. A shame indeed, but not enough to really detract from the impressiveness of the place, I doubt I could have enjoyed it much more if it was mint... except for the handrail that basically came off in my hand at the top of the gantry. That sucked for a bit. And the barbed wire all over the headstock stairs. That was like being in a saw film.... And I suppose it could have been slightly more pleasant without the obviously deteriorating condition of the floor once you're up the top. All part of the charm m'dears.

    The colliery was sunk to exploit the Barnsley seam or “Tophard”, as it known locally. In the 1950s the shafts were deepened to around 920m in order to exploit other seams. The colliery was closed by British Coal, as the National Coal Board had become, in 1993 and reopened by RJB Mining (now UK Coal) in April 1994, the licence to dig for coal being limited to the Yard seam which is located at a depth of 870m. This seam thickness varies from 1.1m - 1.3m and has a sulphur content of 2.0% and a chlorine content of 4.0% - its reserves lay within a block, the boundaries of which were defined by geological conditions to the north, and by abandoned mineworkings and surface constraints to the west and south. As early as 1998 the IMC report predicted the demise of Clipstone, stating that the Yard seam was expected to be exhausted shortly after the present five-year plan, going on to state that Clipstone had no prospects beyond those identified in the plan, its future being dictated by its ability to remain cash-positive. The colliery finally closed, as predicted, in 2003, and a referendum held by the locals voted to demolish the grade II listed headstock structures, due to their high maintenance cost. As of today, they still stand, but for how much longer, considering their sentence by the people of the very town that built them?

    I went Kodak. Sorry, it cost me under £3 for the roll.











    #1 Boba Low, Aug 18, 2012
    Last edited: Aug 18, 2012

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