Bishop Nick donned a hard-hat and lamp and travelled 140 metres underground down one of Britain's oldest working mines on Tuesday (2 December). It was part of his visit to the National Coal Mining Museum - Caphouse Colliery in Wakefield - when, with the help of a former-miner guide, he found out how coal was extracted and moved to the surface. He saw how miners lived, worked and relaxed in Victorian times when women and children also worked underground alongside men. He also learned about developments in mining over time from pit ponies to modern machinery.
Above ground, he explored the original colliery buildings including the steam winder, medical centre and pithead baths as well as the galleries and displays.
In 1984 the Yorkshire area had a total of 56 collieries and mining was significant in much of the southern and eastern part of our diocese. Mining shaped the communities that exist today, so visiting the National Coal Mining Museum was a great opportunity for Bishop Nick to learn more about the heritage of this area.
Find out more about the National Coal Mining Museum at www.ncm.org.uk.