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Durham County Record Office: the official archive service for County Durham and Darlington

Coal Mining

Information about collieries and coal mining in County Durham.

Durham Collieries

You will find information about collieries in the Durham coalfield, from c.1850 to c.1990 in our Durham Collieries database. The information includes details of the opening and closure of collieries and their ownership.

Miners and Mining History

Two miners, no date (D/MRP 65/1/8) - Click to enlarge
Icon showing image can be enlarged
Few lists of workers in the coal mines have survived. See our guide to 'Colliery personnel records' in the 'Guides to Records' section of our Information Leaflets.

This list is only a brief guide to the records and more details are available in the catalogues to the relevant collections of documents which can be consulted online.

Use our Mining Durham's Hidden Depths database to find information about over 140,000 colliery personnel from the Durham Miners' Association union records and other sources in the Record Office. Details of our holdings of mining records, including photographs are available by searching the catalogue.

Records of employees of the National Coal Board are held by Iron Mountain Records Management, and DCC's Durham Miner Project collected information about local mining history.

The Durham Mining Museum website contains information about County Durham collieries, including photographs and details of people killed in colliery accidents, and you can find out even more about the coal mining industry on the National Coal Mining Museum website.