Ancient Monuments

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Chatterley Whitfield Colliery

A Scheduled Monument in Baddeley, Milton and Norton, Stoke-on-Trent

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Latitude: 53.0758 / 53°4'32"N

Longitude: -2.1753 / 2°10'31"W

OS Eastings: 388353.348297

OS Northings: 353189.783928

OS Grid: SJ883531

Mapcode National: GBR 13K.2W8

Mapcode Global: WHBCF.KYCD

Entry Name: Chatterley Whitfield Colliery

Scheduled Date: 12 November 1993

Last Amended: 1 April 2014

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1015947

English Heritage Legacy ID: 21575

County: Stoke-on-Trent

Electoral Ward/Division: Baddeley, Milton and Norton

Traditional County: Staffordshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Staffordshire

Church of England Parish: Norton-le-Moors St Bartholmew

Church of England Diocese: Lichfield


The monument includes the standing, buried and earthwork remains of what is effectively the southern half of a mid-C19 to late-C20 colliery. The area contains the greatest concentration of surviving buried archaeological remains of colliery buildings and features, a group of shafts and their heapsteads (buildings and works around a mine shaft) and a former railways sidings area.

Source: Historic England


Chatterley Whitfield Colliery is situated on the north-eastern outskirts of Stoke-on-Trent, on the North Staffordshire Coalfield and five productive coal seams outcrop across the site. The monument includes the standing, buried and earthwork remains of what is effectively the southern half of this mid-C19 to late-C20 colliery. The area contains the greatest concentration of surviving buried archaeological remains of Chatterley Whitfield, a group of shafts and their heapsteads (buildings and works around a mine shaft), and the former railways sidings area where the graded coal was loaded onto wagons for transportation.

The structures associated with Platt, Institute, Middle and Engine Pits are situated on a raised platform that is orientated north-east to south-west and falls away at its east end. There is a revetment wall of stone rubble and brick to its north face, while the south side is marked by the retaining wall to the adjacent railway sidings and concrete reinforcing. To the north of the platform, a number of rail tracks survive, though some are partly covered over.

The extant structures at PLATT SHAFT include the headgear (2), probably early C20, and a winding house (1) of 1883. The headgear consists of composite box sections with flat-section cross bracings and lattice struts, and it is clad in steel-plate sheeting except for the two back-stay inclined legs. To the north-east and south-west sides of the headgear are steel-clad porches which serve as entrance and exit chambers to the shaft. The adjacent single-storey winding house is partly built into a bank of made-up ground which forms a platform for the headgear and shaft. It is built of brick and has round-arched openings, some in modified openings. In the apex of the north-east gable wall is the date '1883' in raised brickwork. Internally, the concrete first floor appears to form part of the foundation for the winding gear, and the steel roof trusses incorporate runway lifting beams. The original steam engine has been removed and the building now contains a restored, twin cylinder steam haulage engine by Warners of Hanley which dates from c 1865 and was brought here from Silverdale Colliery in Newcastle-under-Lyme. Buried remains associated with the former fan house and steam-haulage engine house of Platt Shaft which were demolished in 1967 are considered to survive in the vicinity of the winding house.

South-east of Platt is INSTITUTE SHAFT which has an exposed lattice girder headgear (10) of c.1911 which raised the two cages. The tower above the shaft is encased in plated steel and an upper platform supports the winding gear. A separate steel frame, possibly of more recent construction, alongside and to the south-west of the plated tower supports a high-level platform; there is a second steel frame to the north-west side. There is a small brick entrance lobby to the south-west. The three-storey winding house (26) to the south-west was constructed in the 1960s and replaced an earlier stone-built one which was demolished in 1952. It has a steel frame, with brick to the upper storeys and a reinforced concrete substructure. Internally, the walls are faced with glazed or painted bricks and there is an overhead crane gantry. It has a geared parallel drum winder; the mechanical parts by Robey of Lincoln and the AC electric motor (vandalised and stripped down) and control gear by Metro-Vickers. Although the engine house dates from c.1960, the engine may be older, possibly obtained second-hand from another colliery since engines of this type were common in the 1940s. The braking system, oil-operated callipers possibly date from post-1973. In the basement are a pump and a steel pipe ring main circuit to a heat exchanger. The remains of earlier structures associated with Institute shaft, including its original winding house, together with a briquette-making plant and a series of eight boilers which were situated to the north and north-east of the shaft, may survive as buried features.

MIDDLE PIT is situated to the south-east. Its headgear and other buildings have been demolished and the shaft has been capped, but the location of the latter is marked by a methane ventilation pipe, and there is a concrete plinth to the north-east of the shaft. Immediately to the east is a late-C20 building (32) of blockwork with a brick facing which contains a winding or haulage engine brought from elsewhere. It was built by the museum as a replica of a winding house and is not included in the scheduling. There is also no surface evidence for any of the buildings relating to ENGINE PIT which was situated to the south-west. Their buried remains, however, are likely to survive in this area.

The WINSTANLEY HEAPSTEAD (5) of 1913-14 is a substantial brick structure which comprises a brick tower that supports and encases the headgear and a two-storey winding house. The two parts of the building are connected via an open concrete floor slab at first-floor level with open-arched masonry side walls. This was originally roofed over, but the roof has been removed and the side walls have been lowered. The building has timber doors, metal-framed windows set in rendered surrounds, some with brick relieving arches and concrete balconies. It was fitted with ‘a 12ft Schiele-type fan driven by a pair of 28" x 36" horizontal engines'; the fan and silencer remain in situ. The electric winding engine, which replaced a steam winder, is situated on the first floor. It is a relatively small, geared parallel drum winder; the mechanical parts by Tinsley of Darlington, and the electric motor and control gear by Metro-Vickers. The operating manual states that the engine dates from 1967, but this may refer to the date it was installed in the heapstead since this type of engine was developed in the 1930s and 1940s. The headgear is steel.

The RAILWAY SIDINGS area is situated immediately to the south of the linear grouping of shafts and survives as a wide, deep cutting with retaining walls along its north and south sides and rail racks in situ. Both walls show clear evidence for various phases of construction and repair. The southern retaining wall is mostly of brick, including a section of large format bricks, though its south-east end is concrete blockwork. It varies in height along its length, from 2.5m up to 6m in places. The north wall is also brick, though there are some areas of reinforced concrete and it has been rendered with concrete in places. Both walls contain a large number of openings (most now blocked) which include coal drops, chutes and access tunnels. Steelwork and metal pipes also protrude from the brickwork. From at least the 1880s the sidings were crossed by a number of bridges, many carrying rails, which provided access to the southern part of the site. The two surviving bridges are steel-framed and braced concrete structures with brick infill panels and they carry concrete decks between vertical abutments on either side of the cutting. They both have a lower-level deck along part of their length which originally contained conveyor equipment, and are surmounted by steel railings. In the area to the south of the sidings are further rail tracks, the remains of the C19 spoil tip, several steel-framed and brick structures, and a number of concrete plinths and these are also included in the scheduling

At the south-west corner of the site is a late-C19 pond (138), one of two originally in this area, the other having been infilled, and these were part of a complex pumping system employed at the colliery. A small pump house (23), close to Winstanley shaft, and not included in the scheduling, piped some of the excess water not used in the washery from the underground workings to the pond prior to it being released into the water course or draining away.

The monument boundary has been drawn to include the area which contains the greatest concentration of buried archaeological deposits associated with some of the earliest working of the colliery, as well as buried features associated with later colliery buildings that are known to have formerly occupied this area. In addition, it includes a significant group of mine shafts and their associated surface structures which formed the focus of mining activities from the late C19 onwards and the railway sidings area and its retaining walls. Although the buried remains of other demolished structures are likely to survive elsewhere across the colliery complex, these are generally more dispersed in nature and not considered to, therefore, merit scheduling.

The late-C20 rebuilt Middle Pit winding house (32) and small brick building (129) immediately to the east, together with the pump house (23), methane store (25) and its chimneystack (137) and a small workshop (34) in the south-western part of the site are excluded from the scheduling. Other exclusions include the Grade II* listed tub hall, the re-erected winding wheel (124) to the south-east of Platt winding house, and the surfaces of all roads and paths. The ground beneath all these features is, however, included in the scheduling.

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

Chatterley Whitfield Colliery, which dates from the mid-C19 through to the late C20, is scheduled for the following principal reasons:

* Survival: it is considered to be the most comprehensive survival of a deep mine site in England from the industry's period of peak production, and one which retains clear evidence for its historical development and the technologies employed there;
* Diversity: it includes a diverse range of buildings, structures and buried archaeological remains which, together, preserve the surface history of the coal industry from the 1860s through to post-nationalisation;
* Representation: although some of its structures are present at other colliery sites, the significance of Chatterley Whitfield lies in its completeness which is unequalled in any other former or surviving coalfield site in the country;
* Historic interest: for its position at the forefront of mining technology during the C20.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Jack, W, A Short History of Railway Developments at Chatterley Whitfield, (1977)
Chatterley Whitfield Colliery Railway Sidings Area. Preliminary Desk Study & Site Visit of Structural Inspection, February 2007, Wardell Armstrong.,
Chatterley Whitfield Condition Survey, Condition Report, WS Atkins Consultants Ltd, 2001,
Chatterley Whitfield Mining Museum. A Guide to the Colliery and its History. Chatterley Whitfield Mining Museum, 1981

Source: Historic England

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