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Big Pit

May 7, 2015

The other day I visited the Big Pit National Coal Museum in Blaenafon, South Wales. It is an extraordinary place and well worth a visit. A guided tour takes you underground to walk through the low-ceilinged tunnels that extend like a rabbit warren three hundred feet below the surface of South Wales. The tour is lead by an ex-miner who introduces you to the utter darkness that can only be found in such a place and the cramped surroundings that make up the vast industry that was coal mining in the UK and particularly in Wales. For safety reasons visitors are not permitted to take cameras and mobile phones with them but I managed a quick sketch in the underground stables as the guide talked about the lives of the miners and the pit ponies they worked with not such a long time ago in the 1970’s and 1980’s.

Big_Pit_web

After a pleasant picnic with family and friends we visited the Mining Galleries and were introduced to modern mining equipment in an audio visual exhibition that brings modern mining to life (almost).

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