Hope and Heritage spring eternal, April 2022

Cold comforts…

2 seasons in one day: snow in the morning of 31st March 2022

Picking up from our previous update at the end of March, you might be forgiven for thinking that the seasons had jumped, with winter returning, as snow fell on site on the morning of 31st March; the pit briefly donning a white cloak, before warmer air, and the green shoots of Spring began to emerge more fully.

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March airs and nights of wonder

Reporting on a busy weekend 12th and 13th March 2022, the Friends were blessed with a lovely bright day, finally feeling warm in the sun; everyone was eager to get to work under the beautiful blue sky.

Beautiful birdsong greeting us to site from the headgear

Welcoming us to site, and a portent of Spring, was a symphony of birdsong, performing loudly all around the site. Looking up, we caught sight of a small group of birds alighting on the main headgear, heralding the changing seasons.

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August company, Saturday 7th August 2021

Summertime. The Friends and volunteers returned to site for a brief spell as life continues to return to something akin to a norm. Hybridisation is the spice of life; we will grow and adapt.

Sunshine heating, cloud conditioning. View of the main headgear from the roof beams of the old switchgear building

In the event the sun shone early doors, enough to burn outside although patches of light drizzle were an omen of developments after 3pm.

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Pathways to the past, Saturday 26th June 2021

Framed by trees, the pit appears from Wath Road in Elsecar

After a short hiatus, the Friends and volunteers gathered for another socially-distanced outdoor working session on site.

Opening up. Not quite ready for open days more generally, but hopefully not too far away now!

Although decisions around lifting national lockdown restrictions in England were held back for four weeks until 19th July 2021, and there were worrying signs of Covid-19 infections rising with the new ‘Delta variant’, still the protection of an effective vaccination programme and gave the crew confidence in working outdoors, in a small group, albeit behind closed gates for a further push on restoration activities.

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Creative Heritage: 3D printing and model making

In what we hope will be an ongoing series of guest blogs on the site, we’re delighted to share this Creative Heritage piece, sharing the story of one of many creative ways of engaging with heritage and history, inspired by or aligned with the stories of Hemingfield Colliery.

This one brings together old and new technology as Peter Duthie shares his insights into planning, designing and fabricating 3D models of industrial electric locomotives. Peter writes:

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Storm force from Hemingfield, or the Shipping Forecast.

What with Storm Ciara (pronounced keera) threatening proceedings, and suggestions of Storm Dennis barely a week away, the Friends threw caution to the – admittedly light – wind on Saturday 8th February 2020, and ventured down to site for a surprisingly storm-free open day at Hemingfield Colliery.

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May Days

Wheelie good times

Tour de Yorkshire Barnsley hotspots May 2018

May 2018 was one to remember. Le Tour de Yorkshire passed through South Yorkshire on 4th May. Barnsley was busy and buzzing with one of the stages starting in the town, before heading out throughout the borough. Hoyland, Wentworth and Elsecar were all eagerly awaiting the arrival of the men’s and women’s races during the day – with crowds of all ages, street decorations and special celebrations arranged all around the route.

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