Snatches of sunshine

A grey day in May

Continuing the effort to return to normal, or as near to normal as anyone can get during a global pandemic, the Friends and regular volunteers foregathered once again on Saturday 22nd May and – ever the optimists – endeavoured to do a little more maintenance on the site at Hemingfield after a thoroughly mixed week of rain and everything except regular sunshine.

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May Days

Glowering and wet: Hemingfield Colliery 8th May 2021

Wet weekends are nothing new, but they do tend to rankle when they delay planned activities, and especially so when the sun somehow managed to shine late into the dying light of the working week. The Friends can wait another week to get back on site for some more socially-distanced outdoor maintenance work.

Meanwhile, back home sheltering from the downpour, the Friends and volunteers made good use of some extra hours of research and writing, and some went for a wander around Hemingfield and Elsecar…

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Step-Up and Stick to the Plan. Returning to a new normal?

This is a recuperative post, covering a range of time from March into April 2021, as the UK’s lockdown began to ease, following a 4 step plan: a roadmap enabled by the extensive targeted vaccination programme proceeding since the new year. As the nation recovers normal activities, so hopefully will we!

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Leaping to Jump’s defence

Are you going to Jump?

Jump road sign

Jump, near Barnsley, in South Yorkshire is certainly an eye-catching name on a sign, and somewhat arresting when said out loud.

But locals have heard it all before…

“…you have a slight touch of onomaphobia as regards the name of our village. The name, tout court, certainly does impinge rather directly on the attention, showing that it has the “punch” or “pep” so beloved of our transatlantic cousins. By the way, the name of Jump would make the fortune of a striving burgh out West.”

Penistone, Stocksbridge and Hoyland Express, 4th April 1925, p.4

Wild West or not, in times gone by it has often been the subject of comment and even scandal:

“Jump was noted as the sport of the Press, and any sensational story was tacked onto it. Society at large thought of it with derision, and speculators gave it a wide berth.”

Barnsley Chronicle, 2nd March 1901, p.7

But where does the name come from?

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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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Autumn falls; rising hope

view of a flowering yellow weed growing out of a sandstone wall with an engine house building above it. Hope in dark times.
View of the winding engine house from the the pumping shaft level

On Saturday 17th October 2020, The Friends of Hemingfield Colliery squeezed another socially-distanced and Covid-safe session for a small number of volunteers. Working outdoors in the fresh air it was a busy day, even if it might have been the last in 2020.

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Saturday successes, 5th Sept 2020

View of lower terrace and top of retaining wall with repairs reaching the top.

Seizing another weekend of good weather and maintaining the momentum of recent weeks, the Friends and regular volunteers started early and quickly got shovelling, mixing and delivering lime mortar ready to continue rebuilding the collapsed rear retaining wall. Working safely outdoors and with focus to get the job done, the global pandemic seemed a little further away for a short while.

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