Notts: Thoresby pit set to close with the loss of 600 jobs

Thoresby Colliery is facing closure in the next 18 monthsThoresby Colliery is facing closure in the next 18 months
Thoresby Colliery is facing closure in the next 18 months
Thoresby Colliery looks set to close by the end of next year with the loss of all 600 jobs.

The general secretary of the Union Democratic of Mineworkers, Mick Stevens, says 228 jobs are set to go within weeks at the last remaining coal mine in Notts.

The remaining jobs will go by the end of the Autumn next year, if a suitable investor is not found.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

In total, more than 2,000 jobs look set to be lost as Kellingley Colliery in South Yorkshire also faces closure.

Owners UK Coal say they need at least £10 million keep several of their pits open, including Thoresby.

It has now been agreed that £10 million will be pumped into the operation by the Government, with another £10 million from stakeholders.

However, this is only to oversee mining of the existing coal faces before a final closure next year.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Mr Stevens expressed his frustration at the outcome, but vowed to fight on.

“We are not going to give up on it, and we are calling on all of the miners at Thoresby to call on their MPs to get involved,” he said.

“These men at Thoresby have been working at 120 per cent and they are being slapped in the face.”

“It’s Margaret Thatcher all over again. We are not sitting back and accepting it.”

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

He hopes that investment is possible, but says the closer Thoresby Colliery gets to closure, the less financially viable it will become to open another coal face and start mining again.”

Sherwood MP Mark Spencer said this week that his biggest concern was that any cash being pumped into UK Coal would only serve as a stay of execution.

“Had the Government not stepped in when it did, the gates would have been closed weeks ago,” he said.

“The money is going into to keep this going for another 18 months. The challenge for UK Coal is to put the development in for the next coal face to secure those jobs, but they are saying now that they want to throw in the towel, which is disappointing.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

UK Coal blamed falling coal prices around the globe and the strength of the pound against the dollar had triggered the financial problems.

Yet last November, Chancellor George Osborne visited the pit and promised it still had a future.

But with Thoresby and Kellingley both facing closure, it is understood that more coal will be imported form Russia, a suggestion that angers Mick Stevens.

“I believe it’s an absolute ridiculous situation for this country to be in,” he said.

“They are shutting our mines and I really feel for the lads who will lose their jobs.”

“The lads have been producing incredible results and Thoresby is the jewel in the crown. It’s just ridiculous.”