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Wigan Album

Albert Colliery, Abram

31 Comments

Albert Colliery Abram date?
Albert Colliery Abram date?
Photo: Keith
Views: 7,122
Item #: 28793
A photo taken at Albert Colliery Abram, date unknown. In some respects similar to the one I posted showing the roof workings at Parsonage Colliery, but this one looks earlier. The sheer steepness of the incline makes me wince, it looks incredibly dangerous, as if life underground wasn't hazardous enough.

Comment by: David Wood on 27th December 2016 at 23:03

Struggled up and down that drift a time or two,apprentice fitter 1965/66.

Comment by: Enid bradburn on 28th December 2016 at 10:16

Thought that pit closed in 1933

Comment by: Albert. on 28th December 2016 at 11:40

I can only remember the Maypole Colliery, at Abram, and that closed in the late fifties.

Comment by: Albert. on 28th December 2016 at 11:48

It does go into quite a bit of detail, relating to this colliery, Go to this web site.http://www.nmrs.org.uk/mines-map/coal-mining-in-the-british-isles/lancashire-coalfield/wigan-coalfield/abram-colliery/

Comment by: whups on 28th December 2016 at 12:35

if you think that,s steep keith then spare a though for us that worked in the lower florida L3 which was 1 in 3 gradient.i think only agecroft at a 1 in 2.5 was a more steeper 1.

Comment by: tuddy on 28th December 2016 at 13:36

According to the Northern Mine Research Society's web site, Albert Colliery operated from 1940 to 1965. Albert the arches shown here look like the ones that you mentioned setting in the 1950s, two piece clog irons with a centre fish plate. The covering between them is timber lagging boards. The joint on the pipe range is a flange type, which had mostly been replaced Carlton, or Victaulic when I started in the 70s

Comment by: Handsomeminer on 28th December 2016 at 17:10

That stroll down L3 brew set you up for the day

Comment by: Maurice. on 28th December 2016 at 17:13

Albert pit was there in the 60s,it was off Smiths Lane,and it had a very nice fishing lodge at the side of the road,regarding roof supports there was some Cockering at Nook Pit,Cockering must have been very difficult to do.

Comment by: Enid bradburn on 28th December 2016 at 17:35

Just look this pit up there was a Albert pit 1and 2 closed in 33and reopened as bickershaw collery

Comment by: Albert. on 28th December 2016 at 19:17

In the Yorkshire coalfields, and several others, the seams were mostly on a level playing field, therefore gang riders could be used for conveying miners to the coal face. The Lancashire coal field seams were not, so shanks pony was the order of the day, and it took half an hour, or more, to reach your place of work. Has anyone any knowledge of there being any gang riders being used in any Lancashire pit?. Gang riders were shown , on T.V., being used for conveying miners', underground, at Kenningley Colliery.

Comment by: David Wood on 28th December 2016 at 19:47

One or two of the comments don't ring true,as I've said i was an apprentice fitter there 1965/66.helping to decommission, and the Drift mine was at the bottom of Bolton House Road, off Bickershaw Lane.

Comment by: tuddy on 28th December 2016 at 21:02

Albert, There were man riders used at Golborne Colliery. Diesel hauled manrider carts along the main level tunnel from the pit bottom, and rope hauled manriders up and down the inclines in various districts. But as Whups, and Handsome have said, none in L3 brow. that was a rout march.

Comment by: Maurice. on 29th December 2016 at 10:37

David,the drift would be where you said,but Albert pit also had normal shafts,so depending how deep the coal was,and the drift incline,the drift could be anywhere,the pit was where I said,very close the the first sharp bend on Smiths Lane,or maybe it was Bickershaw Lane at that point,there is a big lake now where the pit was,caused by opencasting in the 70s.

Comment by: Albert. on 29th December 2016 at 11:21

Thank you Tuddy. I was really questioning as to whether there was any type of train man rider system. There was at the Maypole a system that they referred to as a jig system, where the coal face was higher than the haulage road. You used a braking system that allowed the descent of the full tubs, and at the same time drawing up the empty tubs, all controlled by gravity.

Comment by: tuddy on 29th December 2016 at 22:19

The one's at Golborne were man riding trains similar to the riders shown on the Kellingly documentary. In the book, The Wigan Coalfield, there's a photograph of a diesel hauled man rider train at Nook Colliery in 1948.

Comment by: Albert. on 30th December 2016 at 10:14

Tuddy. A couple of more questions. As time progressed, did another method take over the transportation of coal from the far end,to the pit bottom, other than the use of tubs?, I was thinking of the conveyor belt system, and if so , what method was used to convey the coal to the top of the pit?.

Comment by: Terry on 30th December 2016 at 16:03

Albert (Longworth) coal mine was at the bottom of Bolton House Road, Bickershaw. Heyfield pit was near the flash off Bickershaw Lane.

Comment by: PeterP on 30th December 2016 at 18:09

Albert coal went straight to the pit bottom on a conveyor then wound up the shaft in a giant hopper

Comment by: tuddy on 30th December 2016 at 18:58

Hello Albert, When coal was wound at Golborne, the coal was transferred from the face conveyor, via a short feeder conveyor in the roadway, to a conveyor belt system which went to a central loading point close to the pit bottom. At this loading point the coal was transferred into tubs which were then hauled to the pit bottom, and wound to the surface. When Golborne Colliery was linked to Bickershaw Colliery, by an underground tunnel, all the coal produced at Golborne travelled to Bickershaw by a conveyor system which unloaded into skips, or hoppers, which were installed in the coal winding shaft instead of cages. the coal was then wound to the surface. This type of skip winding was used at most modern pits. There was also a series of underground storage bunkers which coal could be held in if the belts stopped,this allowed the face to keep running if there was a stoppage.

Comment by: Albert. on 31st December 2016 at 10:56

Such great steps of technology, even in the bowels of the earth. Now only memories remain. Thank you all for your contributions to my questions. There was so much esprit de corps amongst the mining fraternity.

Comment by: Maurice. on 31st December 2016 at 12:14

Terry,I remember the lodge at the side of the road,the Pit I believed was Albert Pit was farther away,I only ever saw it from the top deck of the 54 bus,going from Leigh to wigan.

Comment by: Pw on 31st December 2016 at 12:26

This is a fantastic photo.I remember calling at this pit and getting pies from the canteen.I always thought it was in Bickershaw

Comment by: tuddy on 31st December 2016 at 12:34

Albert, another method of manriding was manriding conveyors. Many of the conveyors that were used for transporting coal outbye were also approved for manriding, with platforms constructed at entry and exit points. There was also a safety gate slightly outbye of the exit platform to prevent any manriding beyond the platform. At some pits bottom belt riding, inbye, was allowed. but this required tall belt structures to provide a safe distance between the top of the belt,which would be travelling outbye, and the bottom of the belt,which would be travelling inbye.

Comment by: Terry, on 31st December 2016 at 15:16

Fan lodge is also off Bickershaw lane Maurice, near the former fan shaft for Abram colliery. The flash off Bickershaw/Smith lane was Diggles flash, near to Heyfield pit known locally at one time as Diggles's pit, after a former owner James Diggle. Believe Mr Diggle put his herd of cows down his pit for safe keeping, during a dispute with the miners in the 1800's. Heyfield pit closed in the 1930's. Diggles flash was replaced as part of the reclamation after the open cast work was finished in more recent times. You would have got a good view of the big open cast hole, from the top deck of the passing LUT number 54 bus a few years ago Maurice.

Comment by: Maurice on 31st December 2016 at 16:52

Thanks Terry,I've fished in Fan lodge,I had forgotten the name of Diggles flash though,I also fished in the new lakes formed from the opencast,there was then a car park,but it's appears to have been blocked off,and the lakes can't be seen from the road when driving past,it would have been the late 40s,to the middle 50s when I could see what I thought was Albert Pit.

Comment by: AH on 19th January 2017 at 10:48

Albert pit closed 1965 approx.the pit was on Bolton house road.At the top of the drift there were arched corrugated tins myself & other apprentices dismantled them.Then assembled them at old boston NCB training center Haydock as a mock underground gallery in 1966

Comment by: paul on 6th November 2017 at 16:50

There was a manrider down to L3, I help to maintained it together with the manriding conveyors, 1-7 units all about 400yards long. It was hot hard work, but it was a good gang of men who worked down there. It became very difficult as the face reached the fault and moved to the left, then they finally gave up on it. I remember trying to work on the return end of the belt it had by that time the roof was only about half a meter high, I think that's when it was abandoned.

Comment by: Philip Longworth on 14th November 2017 at 22:03

Hi. Albert Longworth was my Great Grandfather and it’s very interesting to see photos. My father Frank used to tell me all about the pit.i am led to believe it was also called the Industrious Bee. Albert had three sons Jim, Frank and Albert. Jim stayed with the pit until it was taken over, Albert ended up managing the coal mines in New South Wales and Frank managed an Iron ore mine in Egeremont before moving down south to work for British Ropeways.

Comment by: John walls. on 23rd January 2018 at 20:57

My dad Norman was the num secretary at the Albert pit and I and my brother was taken down the pit on visit, accompanied by Johnny Carroll and Gerry Lewis. I think I was about 10 years old at the time.

Comment by: barry cale on 22nd January 2021 at 22:53

Albert pit was a newly developed drift mine with a conveyor to bring out the coal, it was also used as a manrider when i worked there in1954 as a linesman , Tommy magarigan was the u/manager if i rember correctly. They also had showers & lockers

Comment by: Pat Aspinall on 24th April 2021 at 17:32

My dad and another man was killed by gas at the Albert pit in 1950

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