Duly roasting in July 2022

Feeling hot, hot, hot was definitely the defining feature of July 2022, between 16-20th, and especially on Monday 18th and Tuesday 19th as the Met Office issued its first ever red warning for extreme heat, together with amber warnings indicating danger to life or potential serious illness.

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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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A day in December

The weather was not looking entirely promising as the Friends gently enquired as to the advisability and willingness of volunteers of attempting a winter work-out on site. By Friday evening, however, the regular attendees (or usual suspects) were firmly signed up to drop in first thing for a wee while, and see whether the rain gods would be kind.

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Advent-ures in History

November slipped away, quite literally, into December with a cold turn following Storm Arwen, bringing, wet and wintry weather in its wake. And a touch of snow. Starting belatedly to feel a little festive.

Snowy scene, 28th November 2021

Taking the meteorological hint, the Friends and volunteers stayed indoors for a couple of weekends. Switching from shovels and spades to books and browsing the internet for research and future plans. So during the intermission, we bring you a little glimpse into the industrial past; of Elsecar 150 years ago…

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October escapades

Leaf litter and light. Hemingfield pit in October 2021

October continues to suprise with its variously variable and only vaguely varied weather. Forecasters beware: the elements may pay no heed to your hallowed prognostications. After dodging the drops of wet days and dank nights, and rushing to the thermostat to restore bloodflow, it’s clear that things are on the turn.

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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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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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