Mining the seams: opening Derbyshire's and Warwickshire's coal collections


  • Derbyshire County Council

  • Warwickshire County Council

Project summary

Derbyshire and Warwickshire Record Offices will work together to catalogue National Coal Board, Midland Colliery Owners Mutual Indemnity Company and Warwickshire Miners’ Association collections making them accessible to researchers for the first time. ‘Mining the Seams’ expands on Derbyshire's previous National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) project to open up the complete coal archives for two Midlands counties.

We will catalogue, repackage and improve access to 257 metres of coal-mining collections and conserve more than 1,000 items, including photographs. We will create an anonymised dataset of workmen's compensation data from Warwickshire and Derbyshire to complement Derbyshire's NUM dataset, enabling online statistical and comparative analysis across the two counties. We will digitise 5,000 pages, trialling jpeg2000.

We will also work with the academic community to expand awareness of the impact of industrial accidents on safety legislation, specialisms in the NHS, local communities and on Britain's industrial history. We will create resources to stimulate new research into the coal industry by working collaboratively with an academic advisory panel, students and local volunteers.