September 29, 2008

Football Stadium Houses Coal-Mining Centre

AN archive celebrating the region?s rich seam of mining history has opened.

The North-East England Mining Archive and Research Centre was launched on Saturday on the site of the Durham Coalfield?s last colliery, which closed 13 years ago.

The day-long event featured talks and displays at Sunderland Football Club?s Stadium of Light, which was built on the site of Wearmouth Colliery, the coalfield?s last mine.

The centre, helped by academics, researchers and archivists at Sunderland University, was set up to preserve the region?s mining history.

A wealth of documents, such as union records, health and safety reports and engineering data, are in its archives, which are open to the public.

Centre chairman Dr Stuart Howard said: ?The NorthEast cannot be understood without an appreciation of its rich coal-mining history.

?For more than 400 years, the region led the world in the scale of its coal-mining industry.

?The culture, landscape and people were all shaped by this industry.

?Indeed, the whole region is deeply marked by coalmining. ? The group?s website, neemarc. com, has been launched, and will be further developed in the coming weeks.

(c) 2008 Northern Echo. Provided by ProQuest LLC. All rights Reserved.