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Colliery electrification

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Netherton Colliery was converted to electricity during the 1930s. I think this happened when Bedlington Coal Company took over the colliery in 1934 and undertook a programme of modernisation.

This is one of the motors installed, a 6 x 10 Tandem Main & Tail. Makers John Tinsley Ltd of Darlington. I don't know what this motor was actually used for. A Google search for the maker's name didn't reveal very much but listed them as making continuous rope haulage motors, for moving coal tubs, so perhaps that's what this was for.

If anyone can give me better information about this please get in touch.

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Netherton/Nedderton old photos

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This is a main and tail hauler,[not a motor!..],used for hauling sets of pit tubs and trams, loaded with coal,and materials respectively.They were usually installed at the pit shaft bottom area,as the main means of transporting the total of the coal seam's requirements for a day.At the end of the roadway there would be "Return wheels",[or "Sheaves"],upon which the hauler ropes would be slung,and these wheels and blocks would either be slung up high in the roadway,or mounted beneath the rolleyway,at the end of the line.

Not nitpicking ,mind,only for correctness,but this not an electrically-driven hauler...it is a magnificent example of a twin cylinder steam - driven hauler.

In a very small,shallow mine,it could have been used to wind the pit cages in a not-so-deep mineshaft,it is a smaller version of the big winding engines...except these only had a single drum,with both ropes on the same drum.

Hope I have been of some help with this information.



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I hope I was clear enough to help you understand about these haulers,cos upon me re-reading again,I was thinking that you might have thought that this particular engine would have been used underground,which is not entirely impossible,but highly improbable!

It would have involved having a steam boiler within a short distance away,but seeing as the earliest  pits depended upon a huge fireplace at the bottom of the upcast shaft,which heated the air,causing an updraught,which in turn,caused fresh air to  be drawn down the "Downcast" shaft, which travelled all around the roadways of the pit,then I don't see why a boiler couldn't be installed into the fireplace..like a larger version of a domestic back-boiler,to provide the steam pressure necessary to drive this engine.

Ashington colliery,in Northumberland UK,still had the fireplace,along with all the fireman's rakes,and other tools which hung up on a large rack,on the side of the shaft walled area...it wasn't in use,naturally,after Electricity was installed at the mine,but it was a museum piece frozen in time!!..I think it all went to a Museum..not sure.

So my main point was that it was electric hauling engines that were used underground.

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