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North Fenham Colliery







Entry Created:

3 Sept 2021

Last Updated:

14 Dec 2023




Bambridge & White (1880s)

Description (or HER record listing)

NEHL - The North Fenham Colliery was sunk in 1865, and was advertised to sinkers in February of that year at 7 feet. This was presumably the width of the shaft rather than depth. The colliery was certainly in operation by 1867, given a notice in the Newcastle Journal that a Newfoundland dog was found at the pit and the owner had 7 days to claim him.

A description of the pit can be seen in the Newcastle Journal of 1889. It notes the excellent proximity to the turnpike road to Newcastle, and that it comprised of "two well timbered shafts, together with the plant and machinery...capable of raising 150 tons of coal per day. The royal consists of 100 acres and is held under an agreement for a lease of 31 years from the 1st January 1862". The Low Main Seam was the one being worked and was nearly exhausted by this time, and sought to work the Beaumont Seam thereafter. They were looking to to work it at a cost of £1000, and were seeking an investment for a "small capitalist".

The working is shown on the 1890s survey as a triangular plot, with a number of dwellings and small pit buildings - nothing of the sort we would expect from a modern colliery. It was unconnected to rail, so any coal will have been landsale (sold locally) or taken by cart to the Tyne.

It is shown as disused by the 1910s.

Ordnance Survey, 1890s

Ordnance Survey, 1890s

The legacy pit structures in 1896, with Cowgate Mill in the background. Source: Newcastle Libraries

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The site of the pit in 2023

The site of the pit in 2023

Historic Environment Records

Durham/Northumberland: Keys to the Past

Tyne and Wear: Sitelines

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