Coal mining is the second oldest industry in Britain after agriculture. As big coalmines developed to cope with the output to feed the Industrial Revolution, many small-scale moorland pits - including those around Rawtenstall, Bacup, Rochdale, Littleborough and Heywood - were still worked to provide fuel for local markets, households, farms, mills, factories and foundries. These small, private coal mines were often worked on a shoestring budget, and the miners themselves toiled in extreme conditions using methods of mining hundreds of years old.
Written by a former miner, this book recalls an industry now long gone, of accidents and deaths, of child labour and the owners of these mines, as well as the proud men who toiled below ground, sometimes hundreds of feet down, others in coal seams less than eighteen inches high.
Illustrated with 50 images, this book a lasting record of the East Lancashire Coalfields.