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Papers for the AGM have been circulated to representatives. Additional copies can be requested from the Chairman, Peter Jackson, by email or by phone. Either phone 01388 527532 or email petesmine(at) I will meet your request by email. Copies may also be sent out via Royal Mail which can take up to five working days to arrive at your destination.

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NAMHO Newsletter on-line

The September issue of the NAMHO newsletter edited by Roy Meldrum is now on-line and has been sent to subscribers. There was no June issue due to Covid-19 but once again Roy has done an excellent job producing this newsletter in difficult circumstances. Rumour has it that Roy might want to hand over the baton to someone else so if anyone is interested in carrying on the newsletter, please let Roy or the officers of NAMHO know.

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Papers are now being called for the Conference in July 2021 in Shropshire. The full request is shown below (on the NAMHO news page) including contact for Rob Vernon who is organising the talks.

NAMHO 2021

Hosted by the Shropshire Caving and Mining Club

Lecture Theme: Sixty Years of Mining History Projects

To celebrate the 60th Anniversary since the formation of the Shropshire Caving and Mining Club (SCMC), the Club will host the NAMHO 2021 Conference 2nd to 5th July 2021 at a venue near Shrewsbury, Shropshire. Delegates will be offered a range of surface and underground mine visits, and a lecture programme.
The SCMC was formed when a group of like-minded people got together and formalised their interest in mining because they believed that they had a mining history worth exploring, conserving and recording. Their interest eventually turned into a full-blown project, and for the SCMC, the Snailbeach lead mine to the south of Shrewsbury for example, provided one of a number of focal points.
Other mining history groups undoubtedly went through similar experiences, so to enable NAMHO members, and others, to give their projects an 'airing' the SCMC would like to make the main lecture theme: Sixty Years of Mining History Projects.
You are invited to submit an abstract if you would like to give a lecture / presentation at NAMHO-2021 about a group project. Projects can be past, present or future, and range from surface and underground conservation projects through to archival studies. With hindsight and experience, would you have been done the project differently? Talks on other topics will also be considered. It is intended to hold the lecture programme on the Saturday and if necessary, or for practical reasons, it may continue on the Sunday.
In view of the Coronavirus pandemic we cannot be sure at this stage what safety procedures may be implemented to conduct the lecture programme. Presentations should therefore be given using Powerpoint or similar. This will simplify proceedings if, for example the talks have to be split across two rooms to adhere to social distancing regulations, or ultimately the lecture programme has to be delivered on-line to delegates.
In view of the possible extra administration involved to organise rooms, etc. it would helpful if you could notify Rob Vernon (Email: by mid-October 2020 of your intention to give a talk at the Conference, and its title.
Additionally, would you please send a summary of your talk on half a page of A4 before the end of December 2020 to Rob Vernon giving the full title of the talk, the name of the presenter/s, organisations, contact details and the abstract. Thank you.

Rob Vernon


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Location: Preston Montford, Shropshire
Theme: 60 Years of Mining Projects
Host: Shropshire Caving & Mining Club with support of other local organisations
Planned dates: Friday, 2nd to Monday 5th July 2021

Preparations are just starting for what will hopefully be a 'normal' NAMHO Conference. At present SCMC are looking to use the same venue, a field study centre about 5 miles West of Shrewsbury, as we did in 2011. This allows the lectures, reasonable accommodation (including camping), catering and bar to all be on one site in a quiet rural location.

The conference theme is to coincide with SCMC's 60th anniversary and to look at projects in the mining community that have developed with the growth of industrial archaeology and mine exploration during that period, along with the hopes of what the future might bring. Rob Vernon will be co-ordinating the lecture programme and anyone interested in making a presentation can make an initial contact with him at We hope this will also encourage other clubs and societies to bring along displays on their local projects too.

The usual mix of trade stands, local interest and rescue groups will have the opportunity to attend as well.

Underground visits will be concentrated in Shropshire and the Welsh Borderlands, but with the possibility of a few visits further afield either side of the main conference. These will vary from dry, walk-in to multi pitch SRT. Some water may be present.

For those wanting to stay above ground, in addition to the lectures, there will be guided surface visits e.g. Ironbridge Gorge, and route guides for self-led walks around the West Shropshire mine sites.

Obviously, the current situation in the UK makes all of this impossible at present, but we would like to be optimistic and hope that by next summer a reasonable degree of normality has returned. Should this not be the case, then we would plan to proceed if a sensible approach can be achieved with the appropriate social distancing measures required. If these prove too impractical for a 'live' Conference, then we will aim to provide an online event of lectures, film presentations, photo competitions etc.

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The launch has been announced of the first source of information for the newly set up "Hub" for storing and sharing sources for research relating to cultural heritage. A fully searchable online database of information about 18th Century engines in the UK has been produce based on the work carried out over more than forty years by John Kanefsky. It covers Newcomen engines and early Watt engines as well as other types of engine built prior to the end of 1800. This is the first time John's work has been made this publically available and we are delighted to have been involved in this opportunity for this to now be shared with a wider audience.

The purpose of the Knowledge Hub that the Cultural Heritage Institute (CHI) are establishing, is for data such as this to be accessible through a single point of entry to as wide a circulation as possible. The intention is to make raw data available for people both to add to and enhance as well as to use in their own research. It is also intended to provide a home for so called "grey literature", i.e. documents and reports that have been produced but not previously published. Kanefsky has previously published a number of papers setting out his conclusions drawn from his collected information but not the full data itself. This therefore fits well with the aims of the CHI and is an excellent first choice for the hub.

Following this link will give access to the database:

The full flyer is available HERE.

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We have been approached by Catherine Mills of the University of Stirling regarding a new initiative in Scotland.

If you currently live, or have previously lived, in an old colliery village/town in Scotland and/or you have memories that you are willing to share, such as watching the demolition and/or landscaping of the bings; if you played on the sites as a youngster, you still visit the sites today or you simply miss the headstock in the landscape would you be willing to contribute to the 'Landscape Legacies of Coal' project by filing in a e-questionnaire at The questionnaire will take around 10 mins.

The aim of the study is to establish official and unofficial landscape biographies of these ex-colliery sites. How they have been re-purposed and redeveloped, how the industry has been remembered or commemorated, or not as the case may be, and how the sites have been understood, experienced and used by the local communities from closure to present day.

The survey is being undertaken by Catherine Mills (history) and Ian McIntosh (sociology) at the University of Stirling. For more information about the project (which also includes the creation of heritage walks that narrative the story of coal through the remaining landscape features) see or visit our Facebook page

NAMHO members (or others) with stories to share are encouraged to help Catherine in this research. A flyer about the research is available HERE

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The Northern Mine Research Society has been pleased to announce the release of a database of international mining information compiled by the late Alasdair Neill (Ali). The original 6,000 pages plus of text were converted into a database format to give over 76,000 fully searchable entries.

The database can be accessed at

The NMRS is also updating its on-line mapping of mines in the British Isles and has added a new map showing the distribution of many accidents in coal and miscellaneous mines.

Information provided to the Mining History web list by Mike Gill.

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Oct 22, 2016, 19:34

NAMHO is now on Facebook where you can read news and leave comments. The link to Facebook is on the home page and forum page. If you are reading this on our news page, you can click HERE.

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Oct 21, 2016, 14:47

The Environment Agency have updated the documents about mine water treatment schemes and proposals specifically for Nentsberry Haggs Mine. Two public meetings are planned.Link here

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NAMHO handbook on-line

Mar 09, 2016, 14:41

The facility has been available for some time to print a copy of the handbook from the website. As this appears to be little used, I have uploaded a PDF copy of the handbook to the library (available under the research tab). This version can be read or downloaded and will be updated periodically.

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Nellie Kirkham archive

Dec 31, 2015, 10:36

In the last 3 months PDMHS has taken in the mining history archives (courtesy of Jenny Potts and Mary Wilde at the British Caving Library) belonging to Doug Nash of Op. Mole and Eyam.

Doug was the literary executor of Nellie Kirkham and came into possession of some 60 boxes of Nellie's field notes and other archive material. It was immediately obvious that this material was unique and needed to be lodged in the County Record Office at Matlock to ensure its survival in a proper environment.

Accordingly, David Williams has, over the last few weeks, been transferring this material to Matlock, and the last part of the collection was delivered just before Christmas. This has been celebrated in a blog from Mark Smith at the Record Office -

As mentioned in the blog a catalogue can be found at -*

Some of the material had previously been scanned and this can be seen at -

As Mark says in the blog this material is roughly sorted but needs a great deal of work to make it more understandable. It has to be said that Nellie's handwriting does not make this easy. David is hoping to make this a project for Winter 2016/17!

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NAMHO newsletter - December 2015

Nov 30, 2015, 21:59

The latest newsletter is now on line. You will not need a username or password to gain access to it. Thanks are due to Roy Meldrum who regularly produces NAMHO's information-rich newsletter.

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DMM Product Recall Notice 14th September 2015

Sep 28, 2015, 22:10

Certain DMM carabiners have been found to be faulty and DMM have issued a recall notice. In their words:

"In a small percentage of carabiners the interaction between the internal coil spring (which gives the gate its closing action) and the gate pusher (the component that holds the spring against the carabiner body) may cause the gate pusher to displace, potentially preventing the gate from closing or the mechanism from locking completely."

This notice has been circulated by regional caving and cave rescue organisations. If you want a copy of the full details, please contact the webmaster.

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Tributes paid to Clearwell Caves Founder

Sep 28, 2015, 21:30

Tributes have been paid to Ray Wright who passed away in August 2015 aged 85. The visitor attraction near to Coleford in the Forest of Dean was reopened as a working museum in 1968 after being closed as a working mine in 1945. A report on the BBC news can be read here (available when accessed: 28/9/2015).

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NAMHO and the CRoW review

Aug 19, 2014, 17:56

NAMHO Officers are reviewing the situation with regard to CRoW (The Countryside and Rights of Way Act 2000) following a meeting of the British Caving Association Conservation & Access Committee. The meeting discussed at length the impact of CRoW on cave and mine exploration. The draft minutes can be read on the BCA website by following {this link}. Member organisations are welcome to send comments to the NAMHO Secretary by 30 September 2014.

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Mar 18, 2014, 12:59

The AGM was held on 15th March. Additional time was allowed for useful discussion of future conferences and other topics. The only change in the committee is that Peter Jackson has taken over the role of Secretary from Nigel Dibben.

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New Bulk Minerals research assessment

Aug 28, 2013, 15:44

A new version of the 81-page assessment is now available on the {Research page} on this website.

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Nenthead Bunk House reopened

Aug 13, 2013, 16:16

In order to raise funds for conservation work Nenthead Mines Conservation Society has reopened the Assay House Bunkhouse on the Nenthead mine site to BCA members and their guests. The bunk house sleeps 12 people in 2 rooms, it has central heating and all usual amenities.
Cost £5 per person per night (plus a group donation towards central heating cost in winter). Bring your own sleeping bag, pillows provided.

To book contact: Sheila Barker or 01434 381903

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Historical Metallurgy Society - Research in Progress Meeting

Jul 27, 2013, 15:26

Thursday the 10th October, 2013 :: Department of Archaeology, University of Exeter.
This meeting is aimed at a wide variety of contributors, from historical and archaeological metallurgists to excavators, historians and economists. If you are working, or have just finished working, on a project related to archaeological or historical metallurgy, we would like to hear from you. We are particularly interested in bringing together contract and public sector archaeologists with academic researchers, and in fostering links between the different disciplines studying metallurgy and related activities. Whether you are a student, a researcher, an interested non-specialist, or a professional excavator, we invite you to meet others working in this field and present your research to an interested community.
Proposals for 10-15 minute oral papers are welcomed from anyone undertaking work in any area of ancient, historical, or industrial metallurgy, and from other researchers whose focus is of relevance to this subject.
The Historical Metallurgy Society offers a prize for the best student research presented at this meeting, all students or recent graduate within 12 months of graduation are eligible. ¬
General enquiries and abstracts can be directed to¬

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23000 Coal Mines on Google Maps

Jul 17, 2013, 10:20

Mike Gill has recently informed us that:

"The Northern Mine Research Society is pleased to announce this major advance in the research tools available on its website. Mike Gill has prepared extensive databases giving the locations and historical details of coal and metalliferous mines in the British Isles.Starting with coal, these are now being made available on the website by superimposing the data on Google Earth mapping. Some 23,000 mines will be covered, and basic information such as the opening and closing dates, the mineral worked, and the ownership history (all where known) is given.

"To find the 'Collieries of the British Isles' go to the 'Mining in the British Isles' section of the main website ({}) click on 'Information' (penultimate entry on the option bar) and select 'Mines Information'. Click on Coal, and at the foot of the map choose the 'Online Mapping' option."

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Forgotten State of Industry - Irish Industrial Landscapes in a Global Context
18/19 October 2013

Jun 14, 2013, 17:41

Featuring a presentation keynote speech by leading industrial archaeologist, Professor Marilyn Palmer, this exciting two day international conference brings together an exceptional group of speakers from across Ireland, Europe and beyond, providing an opportunity to share experiences of conserving, managing and presenting our historical industrial landscapes, many of which in Ireland are poorly understood and vulnerable. Largely funded with the support of the InterReg 4A (Ireland-Wales) Metal Links: Forging Communities Together project, with additional support from the Heritage Council, Wicklow County Council and the Gathering Fund, the conference is being organised by community group, Glens of Lead, a partner in the Metal Links project.

This conference represents exceptional value for money. There is no fee for attending, only a charge to cover refreshments, lunches and dinner. Places are limited, so book early to avoid disappointment! All bookings via

The venue is the Glendalough Hotel in the heart of the Wicklow Mountains, Ireland, one hour south of Dublin.

The conference runs from Friday 18th October through Saturday 19th October 2013. {Further details of the programme are available here}.

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International Mining History Conference, Queensland, 2014

Jun 03, 2013, 14:33

The web-site for the International Mining History Congress 2014 in Charters Towers, Australia, is NOW up and running. As yet it is fairly basic but keep checking for updates. The link is: {}

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NAMHO Bibliography now on-line

Apr 19, 2013, 15:35

A bibliography of mining-related articles, books and theses has now been made available from the Research page on this site. The bibliography contains nearly 8000 items and can be sorted or searched by various criteria. Further search options can be added on request. To use the bibliography, go to the Research page and select NAMHO bibliogrpahy from the menu line or click {here}.

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The Archaeology of Mining and Quarrying in England

Jan 22, 2013, 13:40

At the steering group meeting on 10 January the research project team made the decision to postpone the one day conference planned for 18 May 2013 at NCMME, Caphouse Colliery. The amount of work and time required to process and edit the vast amount of information for the Research Framework for the Archaeology of the Extractive Industries in England means that we are very unlikely to have the Resource Assessment and Research Agenda ready for publication in May. We have therefore decided to delay the launch until Autumn 2013. Watch the news on this site for the new date or contact the project organisers direct.

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Nov 25, 2011, 17:52

See our Guidelines page for NAMHO's recommendations for 'best practice' in mine exploration, mineral collecting, and archival research

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