Fingals's Cave
The National Trust for Scotland is undertaking a project to produce a 3D model of Fingal's Cave on Staffa. The cave has been a popular tourist spot for over 300 years and attracted 'celebrities' such as J.M.W.Turner, Wordsworth, Felix Mendelssohn and Jules Verne.

The survey will use Photogrammetry which uses thousands of photographs to produce the model and record graffiti.


Ironbridge Power Station Closes
On the 20th November, 2015, Ironbridge B Power Station was disconnected from the National Grid just after 2:30pm, bringing to an end 46 years of power generation at the ‘B’ station (Ironbridge A power station dating from the 1930s was demolished in the 1980s)

Ironbridge B Power Station as seen from Ironbridge.

Above: Ironbridge B Power Station about an hour before closure!
(Picture: Kelvin Lake - I.A.Recordings)

Trains carrying up to 6,000 tonnes of coal per day through Coalbrookdale have been regular visitors to the site, although since 2010 it has been biomass chips rather than coal that has been carried.

One feature at the power station that will interest Club members and industrial archaeologists is a large mining sculpture by artist Jerry Foxall.

Made from scrap items as per Jerry’s style it features an underground scene, tub haulage, a stables area and the loading of a cage.

Tub haulage, part of the mining sculpture at Ironbridge Power Station (1998)

Miner and horse, part of the mining sculpture at Ironbridge Power Station (1998)

Cage loading, part of the mining sculpture at Ironbridge Power Station (1998)

Above: Views of different sections of the mining sculpture at Ironbridge Power Station taken in 1998.
(Picture: Kelvin Lake - I.A.Recordings)

It is rumoured to have been donated to "Broseley", but due to its size it is to be hoped that a suitable home can be found for it and it doesn’t just get put “into storage” or vandalised.

Note: Other examples of Jerry’s work can be seen in Madeley and Donnington.

Brief Trip & News items extracted from recent editions of 'Below' the Club's quarterly newsletter.

Dates for the Diary - 2016 

28th-31st October: 32nd SUICRO Symposium, Ballyvaughan, Co. Clare.

18th-20th November: Explore 2016, Expedition Planning Seminar, Royal Geographical Society, London.

19th November: MCR 80th anniversary celebrations and JRat’s Digging Award evening, 7:30pm, Priddy Village Hall.

3rd December: Cave Cine Archive film show. 7:30pm at Wells and Mendip Museum.

11th-13th May, 2017: International Early Engines Conference. At the Ironworks Centre, Elsecar, South Yorkshire.

9th-11th June: BCA Party Weekend, Rotary Centre, Castleton.

24th-25th June: NAMHO Conference, Godstone, Surrey. More details will be available (soon) on:

23rd-30th July: 17th International Congress of Speleology, Penrith, Western Sydney, Australia.

September: Hidden Earth, National Caving Conference, details yet to be announced.


50 Years Ago
It has been 50 years since the closure of Madeley Wood Colliery. This event is being marked by the Friends of the IGMT, but a date has not yet been fixed.

The actual closure took place on Thursday 27th July 1967, ventilation and pumping finally ceased on 22nd December 1967.

Colliery Bands
Recent notices in Shropshire advertise the appearance of Ifton Colliery Band - some 50 years after the closure of the pit. It is surprising how long these bands survive.In Yorkshire there are still a number of “colliery bands” doing very well, Grimethorpe & Frickley for example and some are surviving, but not in the top league - for example Newmarket Colliery Band.

Closer to home Highley Colliery Band is also still very active.

Highley Colliery Band performing at the Alverley Mining Days, 2nd-3rd July 2016.
Above: Highley Colliery Band performing at the "Alverley Mining Days", 2nd-3rd July 2016.
(Picture: Kelvin Lake - I.A.Recordings)

Highley Colliery Band music stand banner.
Above: Highley Colliery Band music stand banner.
(Picture: Kelvin Lake - I.A.Recordings)