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Report - South Hetton Colliery/Hawthorn Combined Mine - 22/9/07

xm657

28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
#1
Passed by the village of South Hetton today and this mural caught my eye...

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Although I was only armed with a camera phone (apologies on quality) I decided to go an see if there was anything left.

The wheels have been kept as a monument

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The expanse of field is clearly where the colliery used to be and it didn't take long to find some tell tale signs!

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But where was the shaft? Well never I found it, but I did find the Hawthorn Combined mine shaft.

The Hawthorn Combined mine basically linked 3 small mines together underground to a central large shaft and big winding gear.

This shaft holds the European record, apparently, for the most coal brought up a single shaft in one day - 12000 tons.

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Note the fence in the background designed to keep people out but couldn't see any danger as its well capped.
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I followed some roads to nowhere...
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and sadly there is nothing left of an area of no more that 3 miles radius that up until 20 years ago or less had 5 pits and a coke works, and was served by its own railway line to Ryhope right past Cherry Knowle. Everything now gone save for the above.

There is a major transformer station next to the old pit shaft though and I was impressed by this fella, which was making a deep loud and quite sobering humming. Its about the size of my house!

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Note the wires in front of the camera: I pushed my hand past to get a better photo only to find they were electrified :eek: got a real fright but fortunately it was a low voltage electric security fence. But it was a brown trouser moment feeling a big shock while standing next to a supergrid transformer :eek:

This is my favorite shot which isn't bad for a camera phone...

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