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Ivor Brown Memorial Day

SCMC President David Adams welcoming people to the event

SCMC President David Adams welcoming people to the event.

The Friends of The Ironbridge Gorge Museums and the Shropshire Caving & Mining Club held a successful a day of talks and films in memory of Dr Ivor Brown on Saturday 27th October 2018 in the Glass Classroom, Ironbridge Gorge Museum, Coalbrookdale.

Ivor Brown was a leading light in many local history organisations and was well known for his talks and the visits that he organised to many fascinating locations. As a way of commemorating his life speakers from several organisations that he was involved with contributed to the day.

The auction of two mining plates, one featuring the NCB Barnsley Area pits (donated by Iris Brown) and the other a Granville Colliery plate - the last deep mine in Shropshire (from the estate of the late Jack Smart) during the Ivor Brown Day raised £60 for the Midlands Cave Rescue Organisation.

Thank You

A big "Thank You" to Iris Brown (Ivor's wife), his daughters and their families, all the organisers, speakers and delegates who attended the event and made it an enjoyable day of memories.

Ivor at Blists Hill during a Mining Celebration

Ivor Brown in the Forest Glen (Blists Hill) talking to retired miners commemorating 30 years since the closure of Granville Colliery, 2009.

Ivor leading a walk around Granville Country Park

Ivor talking about the site of Barnyard Colliery during his walk around around Granville Country Park, Telford in 2009.

Sunday 28th October - Walks

Two very informative and interesting guided walks were offered to delegates on Sunday 28th October:

  1. A walk around Coalbrookdale, lead by David De Haan, Chair of the Friends of the IGMT
  2. Jackfield stabilisation works and mining in the Gorge lead by Neal Rushton, Chair, SCMC
David De Haan, Chair of the Friends of the IGMT during the Sunday Coalbrookdale walk

David De Haan, Chair of the Friends of the IGMT during the Sunday Coalbrookdale walk.

2018 Club Annual Dinner

The 2018 Annual dinner was held at the Wroxeter Hotel, Shrewsbury in the evening following the Ivor Brown event. It was a bit of a rush for people to get to the hotel from Coalbrookdale - although the hotel were were not quite ready for us as the afternoon wedding reception had taken longer than expected.

Following the meal Nigel Dibben, NAMHO Chairman, gave an interesting presentation on the "Mines of Alderley Edge" and the 'Envelope Raffle' raised £130 for Midlands Cave Rescue Organisation.

SCMC Chair Neal Rushton presenting Iris Brown with a bouquet of flowers during the Annual dinner

SCMC Chair Neal Rushton presenting Iris Brown with a bouquet of flowers during the Annual dinner.

Talybont (Alltycrib) mine trip

On Friday 19th January several club members visited Talybont (Alltycrib) mine. All initially descended the so-called Air Shaft into the main workings.

Alan Robinson at top of Talybont entrance pitch (Andy Wood)

Talybont entrance pitch

Andy Wood was the first to descend the second pitch using the in-situ rope, but found that it was two ropes knotted together and slightly awkward to pass, then the top ladder collapsed below him*.

After the two rope pitches there are a series of short fixed ladders to descend – this brings you to a cross-cut that if followed comes to the main adit level. Inbye there are several mining artefacts to view.

* The top ladder is not really part of the descent system and was probably an older ladder removed from below and just left on the pitch for convenience! Part of one leg had rotted and it collapsed when Andy stepped on it. The ladder was reversed so that the broken section is now near the top.

Deviations were placed near the top, and lower down the second pitch – a single 45m rope will cover both rope pitches and use of the deviations removes any rub points. There are now two 10mm bolts near the rebelay location but they require hangers to use (one of these bolts was added during the trip – another bolt was placed lower down for the second deviation).

Flooded working at end of adit level (Andy Wood)

Flooded working in the level

Subsequently a visit was made to Wilkinson’s Level which was more extensive than remembered or expected. The pitch beyond the oil drum was not descended. A report was made to the Bat group that a greater horseshoe bat was seen in Wilkinson’s Level.

Report by: Steve Holding

Miners hat with candle and lens

Diary Dates 2019

21st April: Columns Open Day, Ogof Ffynnon Ddu.

18th May: CRO Challenge, Yorkshire Dales.

25th to 31st May: Bradford PC, Gaping Gill winch meet.

9th June: BCA AGM, to be held in Northern England (venue tba).

17th-21st June: NSS Convention, Cookville, Tennesse.

4th-8th July: NAMHO 2019 Conference, to be hosted by Roy Fellows at Llanafan (between Tregaron and Aberystwyth), Ceredigion, in Wales.

9th-12th August: 14th National Caving Congress of Switzerland, Interlachen.

6th-8th September: ResCon19. BCRC Cave Rescue Conference, Priddy, Mendup.

Diary Dates 2020

May: 2nd International Early Engines Conference, Black Country Living Museum, Dudley.

18th-22nd June: 12th International Mining History Conference, Sudbury, Ontario, Canada.

TBA: NAMHO 2020 Conference, Cornwall. Venue tba.


Old Items of interest

crossed picks Bog Ropeway Trestle, 2018

crossed picks Snailbeach Disaster Memorial plaque, 2018

crossed picks Talybont (Alltycrib) Trip Report, 2018

crossed picks 40 Yard Truck, 2015

crossed picks Black Tom Jigs, 2013

crossed picks Safety Platform Work - Snailbeach, 2013

crossed picks Hughs Bridge Canal Tunnel, 2012

crossed picks Snailbeach 112 yard trip, 2011

crossed picks SCMC 50th Anniversary Dinner, 2011

crossed picks Miners Reunion, - 2009 events

crossed picks NAMHO 2009 - a brief report

crossed picks Crushing Blow!, Criggion Quarry

crossed picks Collapse in Level Fawr, Cwmystwyth

crossed picks Nine Madeley Men - re-dedication

crossed picks Old relics from a Broseley Mine

MCRO & British Cave Rescue Council

We support the Midlands Cave Rescue Organisation (MCRO)


mine tub


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© Shropshire Caving & Mining Club. Last updated: 12-Mar-2019