SK9119 : Mill Lane Industrial Estate - once Thistleton Mines

taken 8 years ago, near to South Witham, Lincolnshire, Great Britain

Mill Lane Industrial Estate - once Thistleton Mines
Mill Lane Industrial Estate - once Thistleton Mines
This picture shows one of the industrial units and the trees which cover what was until 1964 the entrance tunnel to the Thistleton ironstone mine.

The industrial estate was originally the site of the engine sheds, loading sidings, crusher and offices of Thistleton Mines. Considerable reserves of ironstone usually extracted by opencast quarrying in the East Midlands lay below a 60ft bed of Lincolnshire limestone, and it was decided to mine it. The mining complex was built from 1955-7. A 22ft-diameter steel-arch/concrete-segment adit was driven 500 yards southwards on a 1 in 40 gradient. The mines were served by a modern double-track narrow-gauge railway operated by one electric and two diesel locomotives, which hauled trains of twelve-ton wagons known as minecars. The mines stretched a mile and a half south and half a mile west, under the present South Witham limestone quarry and south of the old Saxby to Bourne railway. Many of the miners were Scottish coal miners, who lived in houses built for them in South Witham. Production peaked at 390,000 tons a year (and not the million envisaged), but geological difficulties and seepage led to closure on 27 June 1964. The belief that in the second half of the twentieth century it would be necessary to mine ironstone proved misguided: economics prevailed with the introduction of big dragline excavators, opencast was cheaper. The comparable Easton Mines, near Colsterworth, were equally short-lived, closing in 1967.)
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SK9119, 24 images   (more nearby )
  (find more nearby)
Date Taken
Thursday, 17 June, 2010   (more nearby)
Tuesday, 22 June, 2010
Industrial archaeology site   (more nearby)
Subject Location
OSGB36: geotagged! SK 915 193 [100m precision]
WGS84: 52:45.8562N 0:38.6614W
Camera Location
OSGB36: geotagged! SK 916 194
View Direction
West-southwest (about 247 degrees)
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