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Dent Main Colliery

Posted By Ken Wain December 19th 2013 Sheffield history Pro "Further to my little mention of Dent Main Colliery, and the interest that is shown in the Colliery, I would like to share the following information that was given to me in a meeting with the daughter of one of the Colliery's Dirctors. Mr Brian Hutchinson went into partnership with Colin and Albert Pemberton and opened the pit in 1924.The entance to the drift was set back 100 yards from the main Birley Moor Road at the bottom of Birley Wood. The drift was driven at an incline of 1 in 3.3 into the Parkgate seam of coal. In 1945 the colliery employed 27 men underground and 11 on the surface, and at this time the manager was Mr J H Heslop. In 1947 when the mines were nationalised the N.C.B. granted the pit an operating license.

Because the colliery was gas free the miners were allowed to use acetylene lamps as working lights.There were no mechanical means of coal getting, so holes were drilled into the coal face along its length, and shots were fired which brought down the coal when it was worked by pick and shovel and loaded into tubs which were of 10 cwts capacity. Pit ponies were used to transport materials to the coal face, and to bring full tubs of coal to the bottom of the drift where they were attatched to a haulage rope to be hauled to the surface by a petrol engined winch. On reaching the surface the tubs were derailed by one man using a long pole, tipping the coal onto a screening belt, the man then joined two others to sort the coal until the next tub arrived on the surface.

Dent Main was one of the last pits in the Sheffield area to use ponies, they were well looked after and regularly taken to Hackenthorpe village blacksmiths to be re-shod. The pit was known locally as Diamond Row Pit because of the close proximity of a row of miners cottages, all of which had diamond design leaded windows. The workings at the colliery were always in orange coloured "Ochre Water" due to the iron deposits in the workings, the water being continually pumped from the pit.

The pit was very successful and supplied the local steel works in Sheffield and the collieries own two lorries took coal to Blackburn Meadows Power Station at Meadowhall, Sheffield. Mr. Brian Hutchinson was the sole remaining director when the colliery closed in the early 1970s. He was the one who drew up the plans for the workings in all areas of the mine, great credit due to him as the only instrument available to him at the time was a hand held compass. The compass and the colliery maps are the only remaining artefacts to have survived, and are the proud possessions of his daughter, Mrs. Margaret Bennett who gave me permissiond to tell the story for future generations."

Moorhole Colliery

A map dated 1875 shows the workings of the Moorhole Collieries (designated as "Old Shaft").

The winding house was set back south and west of the Diamond Cottages.

To the left is a photo of Diamond Cottages as they are today. Situated in Moor Valley at Aprox: 423ft above sea level GPS Co-ordinates 53.33765,-1.38546




There was a tramway which ran under Moor Valley and down to the Colliery drift.

The photo to the left shows the Colliery drift, now capped off and standing Approx: 384ft above sea level. GPS Co-ordinates 53.33890,-1.38101





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