November 1st - I’m experimenting with long exposure settings on the camera. I did a little last year, but largely left the shutter and aperture to the camera. I’m beginning to get a feel for how there settings work now. 

I’m not a huge fan of the Walsall Wood Pithead sculpture as many will be aware. I resent the poor engineering and tokenism of it, and the shallowness such artworks always engender. But it does make an interesting subject at night. It’s interesting when it catches the floodlight from the football pitch nearby, it almost appears to be lit from below.

Three coal mines. On left in distance - KWK Centrum, on right - KWK Bobre, both in Bytom. And in the middle visible is one headframe of KWK Julian (Piekary Śląskie).

Trzy kopalnie - po lewej KWK Centrum, po prawej KWK Bobrek w Bytomiu, a w oddali, po środku wieża szybowa kopalni KWK Julian z Piekar Śląskich.

Aerial view of Rothes Colliery, Fife, Scotland (circa March 1957).

The sinking of the first pit at Rothes Colliery began in 1947, and abundance of coal appeared promising, despite the advice of local farmers who suggested otherwise. A target for production was set for 1957 and it was decided to make the facilities at Rothes a showpiece for the Fife Coal Company. However, the pits took longer to sink than expected and the company ran into water trouble at a higher level than predicted.

Sinking of the pits was cut off early and production began around 1953 to make some contribution to the 1957 target. However, the miners ran into terrible geological conditions which made production difficult. The coal was poor quality and the seams thinned out. Production was eventually shut down in just 1962. The plans of having 2,500 men employed full time at the colliery were never realised and the buildings were abandoned. The company’s showpiece ended up being the company’s biggest planning disaster.

Watch on

disused; abandoned;

Photography and Video in Lynemoth Colliery Pithead Baths in Northumberland. First attempt at a video.

Four Tet - Plastic People