UK Mining Walks & Visits Log

Yorkshire Mining Walks

Journals of mining walks

    Garforth, Barnsley & Rotherham Mining Visit June 2012
  A brief description

Distance = Mixture of short walks and driving
Route = Paths, roads
Start / End = N/A
Weather = Sunny intervals some rain showers

This log involves some driving and some short walks to see some of the mining and industrial remains in Yorkshire in the area Garforth, Barnsley & Rotherham. Myself and fellow mining explorer set off from home and headed up in to West Yorkshire. Our first site was meant to be Ledston Luck, however travelling up we decided to make a short detour to see Kellingley Colliery (SE526237) the mine is still in use and we got a few distant photos. Leaving Kellingley we were heading for Ledston Luck, but en-route we came across the flooded section of the A656 to the north of Castleford; thus a diversion to get across the river Calder meant we lost some time. We finally arrived at Ledston Luck (SE429308) where there are the remains of both winding engine houses (lovelly architecture), the pit head baths, canteen and some workshops - an excellent site although could do with some maintaining. Leaving Ledston we headed north for a few miles in to Garforth, the first of the Garforth pits to visit was Trench Pit (SE412326) where the winding engine house and sub station survive in the middle of the works yard. Next in line were Elizabeth Pit and Lilly Pit, this visit included a short walk along the path which follows the route of the Aberford Railway. Elizabeth Pit (SE414345) is located in a small copse adjacent to the footpath, the site comprises a number of brick building remains (including the stables and water trough) along with possible boiler house, heapstead; stone-lined engine pond, and the capped shaft and adjacent stone foundation (engine?) block. A visit to this pit would be better in the winter when the weed and nettles have died back. Just to the north of Elizabeth Pit was Lilly Pit and Lily Pit Cottage (SE415349), the cottage is believed to be the mine managers house, however it looks a lot like a winding engine house for a possible Boulton & Watt type engine.

After an interesting look t some of the Garforth Collieries we headed south down past Castleford and on our way towards Barnsley. Before reaching Barnsley we pulled in two sites; the first was the site of Kinsley Drift MIne (SE418155) comprising modern mine buildings in use as an industrial estate. We took a few photos then continued southwest to Royston and the site of the Monckton Main Colliery and the Coking Plant (SE375120). The colliery building include the fan house on the site of the coking works and the modern buildings including the pithead baths on the opposite side of the road. There was plenty of coal dust around from the works and after spending a short while there we headed to our next site. The next point of interest was something spotted on aerial maps so we decided to park up and take a short walk to the site of East Gawber Fan Shaft (SE345087), on arriving here we were both fairly amazed that a large chimney and furnace shaft we still there. The chimney appeared to have been both a furnace (cupola) chimney and a fan shaft. We had a good look around and after dicussing what it was and taking some photos we headed back to the car for a short trip to the next site. A few miles west of East Gawber is the site of Swallow Hill pumping engine house (SE325091), this is currently in use as a house and it has been altered and lowered, but an unexpected find.

Our next stage of the journey was origially to head further west, but due to lack of time we decided to miss out a few sites and instead go and see Barnsley Main (SE366062). The sites contains a number of remains, including the headgear and heapstead, the tub run, the training centre buildings and the modern colliery buildings in use as the industrial estate. From Barnsley we continued heading back southwards to have a look at the site of Hemingfield & Elsecar. The remains at Hemingfield (SE393009) include the Cornish Pumping Engine House in use as a house and attached more modern concrete headgear; a dual winding engine house with second headgear and a later electricity sub-station. The site at Elsecar (SK387998) is part of the Heritage Centre which itself is well worth a visit, but on this visit we had another look at the Newcomen Engine House and the site of the Lawood Adit (SK385996). Leaving Elsecar we took a short detour to take a few photos of the large winding engine house of Lidgett Colliery (SK364989).

It was beginning to get fairly late, but we still had time to see a few more sites before heading home, the first of these was a revisit to Westfield Colliery (SK434956) and the site of engine house with later headgear, attached boiler house and surrounding colliery buildings in use as industrial estate. From Westfield we headed northeast to the site of Kilnhurst Colliery (SK462968) where there are a few remaining colliery buildings including the pithead baths and canteen. We took a few quick photos of Kilnhurst and decided to see if we could get a view of Maltby Colliery (SK551924) before it got dark. We just managed to get a long distance photo of Maltby before the sun went and we headed back home.

A long day and some excellent visits and finds.