Tuesday, 17 December 2013

Wellington at Whitehaven

The instruction is clear, dismount your bike before wending your way down the slope to Whitehaven harbour on the Cumbrian coast.
Having an interest in industrial archaeology this chimney (known locally as 'The Candlestick') takes centre stage in my photograph.  Today it is just a landmark but its original purpose was as the ventilation chimney for the Wellington Mine which was sunk in 1838/40 and ran out under the sea.  Known as a what is called a "fiery pit", that is it suffered from fire damp (flammable gases), which made it a difficult pit to work and potentially dangerous with numerous accidents.  The worst disaster underground occurred in May 1910 with an explosion and  fire which took 132 lives.  There is a plaque dedicated to the men, women and children that lost their lives that day by the Candlestick.  The pit closed in 1933
 The other remnant of the mine is Wellington Lodge (seen here with the harbour light) which was the mine entrance and today the home of the coastguard.
It appears here in the artist's impression of the Wellington mine hanging outside the pub that takes its name.  

An entry to ABC Wednesday, a journey through the alphabet, this week sojourning at W


photowannabe said...

I admire the men who went down and worked in these scary, difficult mines.
That was a lot of people loosing their lives in the blast.
It certainly is a photogenic place. I on't blame you for taking the pictures.

Leslie: said...

Spectacular photos, Joy! Next trip, I'd like to come up to Cumbria and visit some of the sites you've shown us here.

abcw team

Roger Owen Green said...

Especially love the Candlestick - well named.
ROG, ABC Wednesday team

Anonymous said...

Wonderful post for "W"!
Now I will learn more about the coastal mines, I had no idea any of them ran out beneath the sea.

Carver said...

Very interesting post and wonderful photographs.

Powell River Books said...

Looks a bit nicer now that the mine isn't in operation. - Margy

Gerald (SK14) said...

a wonderful glimpse of whitehaven