Arkwright Colliery Closure – 30th anniversary
Arkwright Colliery (NCB North Derbyshire Area) and latterly British Coal (Central Region) finished production just over 30 years ago on 21st January 1988. The colliery, was sunk near to Arkwright Town in 1897/98, when drifts at Calow were sunk to the Top Hard seam. Further drifts were sunk in 1938 and 1972. A total of five drifts served the colliery at the end , all connected by cross measure drifts. Locally the colliery was known as Wangum Pit.
At nationalisation in 1947 the colliery went into the NCB East Midlands Region No. 1 Area and into the NCB North Derbyshire region at the 1967 reorganisation. The colliery merged with Markham two years prior to closure. Closure was as a result of exhaustion of coal reserves in the Deep Soft seam.
Post closure a strange occurrence happened when mine gas escaping from old workings penetrated some of the nearby pit houses in Arkwright pit village. This resulted in the building of a new village and the demolition of the old pit village. Following closure the pit and village site were opencast mined.
The image (top) shows Arkwright miners celebrating breaking its weekly target in April 1975. Below is an Arkwright Colliery mottie or check.