Woolley Colliery History

Woolley Colliery Mine was working from at least the early 1850’s. Several coal seams outcrop in the hillside so coal was probably mined thereabouts for many years before that but only on a small scale until railway transport began. The main mine began as a pair of tunnels into the hillside in the Barnsley Bed seam. As time went on, vertical shafts were sunk to get at the deeper seam.

In the 1960s there were three shafts in the pit yard and a fourth, for extra ventilation, about a mile to the east. At that time around 17,000 tons of high quality coal were produced each week from four seams.

Artist Impression of Woolley Colliery
The pit was one of the largest in West Yorkshire; in 1980, it employed 1514 men underground and 428 on the surface.
After the 1984-5 strike, the men from North Gawber colliery were also transferred to Woolley. The pit finally closed in 1987.

1991 View from Dearne Valley bottom.
In 1993 the Colliery was demolished, this was the view.

Spring 1993 – viewed from opposite side of M1

The site in the late 1990’s