Sheffield Daily Telegraph – Friday 25 July 1890
The New Colliery Sinkings at Conisborough.
A most important undertaking is that of the Denaby Main Colliery Company at Cadeby, a little village on the other side the river Don from Conisborough, and facing the old castle, a landmark for miles round.
It is only eighteen months ago that Cadeby ” Rattles,” it is called, was under tillage, but so rapid has been the transition that comparative stranger would hardly ; believe his eyes. In the place of the fields of grass and corn there rears what at a distance looks like a mighty workshop, but which as yet is only in its infancy. Indeed, the two huge chimney stacks and iron-roofed buildings which attract the attention of the railway passenger as he emerges from the tunnel just above are merely temporary buildings, put down purely for sinking purposes, and fated to be razed to the ground at the end of five years, or whatever may be the time when the precious black diamond ” is reached by the boring apparatus.
This busy black scene, which seems to have sprung up almost as if by magic, is the spot where in a short time will stand the easternmost colliery in South Yorkshire, a sister to the present Denaby Main Pit, further westward between Conisborough and Mexborough.
There are two shafts, each 16 feet in diameter, and in getting to a depth of 80 yards almost insuperable difficulties have been met with. For some time the sinkers were driven out by the water, which all along pours from hidden springs down the sides of the shafts, and makes the work of most distressing nature and most difficult. Coal not expected to be reached under 600 yards, but once the sinkers get out of the water bearing strata, which by this time ought to be nearly cut through (it was disposed at Denaby at 60 yards) their future progress should be attended with considerably less impediment. There are six splendid pumps work night and day, and the shaft never empty of work, there being continuous relays of 16 men. Altogether there are 300 men engaged on the new site, many of them being masons, &c. Sidings have been cut into the Manchester, Sheffield, and Lincolnshire Railway just below the tunnel. The new permanent engine-house is a magnificent specimen of solidity and strength. It one mass of solid concrete, 80 feet in length, feet in width, and feet in height, all encased with strong walls of masonry, and the engine will rest on huge blocks of Bramley Fall stone.
When completed the engine-house will be one of the finest in the country. The engines for drawing purposes are already on the scene, and that certainly looks like business, and at no distant date, and would certainly create the impression that the original estimate of six years, which was the time given for the commencement of actual coal-winning, is an exorbitant one.
However that may be there the engine is in sections, and it may be stated that it was purchased just at a lucky time, for between then and now prices have gone to such extent that in the engine alone no less than £1,500.
The iron “tubbing,” with which the sides of the shaft are hermetically sealed, are on the place in tons, and there is an air and determination of business to the whole proceedings.