Northumberland Coal Fields 1950s - Archive Film 93480

  • Description

    NORTHUMBERLAND - FIELDS OF COAL A general view of a mechanised coal field. A panorama of coal heaps is worked on by a number of cranes and diggers. A wide trench floor is the site for several large pieces of equipment, while a crate of coal hovers on chains in the foreground of the image. The narration tells us that improvements in machinery are responsible for production increases in British open-cast mining and have facilitated the development of new sites previously deemed economically unviable. One such machine is seen from above. A sieve-like crate of coal swings across the screen, suspended on huge linked-metal chains, round to the towering coal mountains. The narration places us at the Acorn Bank site near Beddlington, Northumberland. An aerial view of the site shows the mined surface of the seam surrounded by farmland. Fields and trees weave over a traditional vista of flat open countryside. The narration explains the process undertaken when developing a new open-caste mining site. A bulldozer 'skims off' top soil from the foremost field (to be replaced later). Large bulldozers and trucks work on an earthy surface attended and assisted by men in work clothes. Two men stand leaning on a wooden fence viewing the mechanically facilitated transformation of the rural land before them. One man wears a flat cap and work clothes; the other who points and talks is wearing a trilby hat, dark suit and white collared shirt and tie. Tipper trucks move earth away from the area to be mined, while a suited man walks between them. A power shovel breaks rock from the ground. Slabs of stone are dislodged and broken by the shovel's toothed head. Broken rock is removed in a crate running on giant drag lines. A view from behind of a man in a working jacket sitting in a large piece of metal framework machinery shows him operating the movement of large 'buckets' from a cabin within the machine. The moving framework of the machine is seen in close-up. The bucket empties its 30 ton load onto a mountain of stone. Again; an aerial view of the revolving crane and a shot of the 18 ton bucket suspended from the crane. In the machine's cabin the man operates the buckets' movements with a hand lever. The bucket swings across a dug-out area and up to the crane's framework while a tiny human figure in a hard hat scales the steep sides of the dug out area. The revolving control cabin is viewed from below. A bucket empties its tonnage. The narration continues to tell us the details and benefits of open cast mining in Britain. A middle-aged man works at the rock-face wearing wide dark trousers, a worn collarless shirt rolled to above the elbow and a cloth cap. He operates a hand controlled power drill with a long thin threaded drill-head. A shot of coal seams shows a blast taking place. A repeat view of the box-cut trench is followed by a close-up of shovels digging and scooping coal before moving it into a 10 ton skip which is hauled up by a high speed crane. The skip is suspended over rubbly ground. Seen from above trucks move along tracks on the top level of the coalfield, which wind through the excavated trenches. A skip is emptied into a 40 ton coal hauler. Convoys of loaded hauler trucks move slowly along. A vista of the edge of the coalfield shows two trucks passing on a road cutting through hillocks of coal and rubble. A close up of the slope of a coal heap shows the textured surfaces of lumps of coal. A coal hauler moves its load rockily along flat ground, then crosses over an army-style 'Bailey' bridge. The driver is shown in the truck cabin, wearing a cloth cap and dark roll neck jumper under a worn jacket. A shot shows the truck's huge wheels. The truck crosses another bridge. Coal empties from the truck. A view shows ploughed earth which the soundtrack tells us is a mine site returned to a 'natural' or improved state, often with the help of the Ministry of Agriculture.
  • Owner

  • Source

    Youtube (Youtube)
  • License

    What does this mean? Standard Youtube License
  • Further information

    Resource type: Video
    Added by: Simon Cotterill
    Last modified: 4 years, 3 months ago
    Viewed: 498 times
    Picture Taken: Unknown
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Co-Curate is a project which brings together online collections, museums, universities, schools and community groups to make and re-make stories and images from North East England and Cumbria. Co-Curate is a trans-disciplinary project that will open up 'official' museum and 'un-officia'l co-created community-based collections and archives through innovative collaborative approaches using social media and open archives/data.