Stories brought to the surface

Crinklecut Pictures film screening: Report from the Northern Coal Face
Crinklecut Pictures film screening: Report from the Northern Coal Face

TRUE stories of Northumberland miners will be told in a new documentary about the decline of the pits.

Report From The Northern Coal Face, by Crinklecut Pictures, has been produced and directed by North East film-maker Adrin Neatrour to show how the industry has vanished from the surface, but lives on in the mind, memories and mementoes of its workers.

There were more than 100 pits within 20 miles of Newcastle 25 years ago, but now there are none.

The ‘report’ is based on the words and experiences of ex-miners, presenting a mixture of nostalgia and anger, and includes footage shot by the workers in the pit during the last days of the industry in the region.

It features three ex-miners in particular – Alan Dixon, whose paintings invoke the memories of lost communities, John Douds, who has created a full working model of Bates A pit, and Dave Wood, who is angry at what he sees as the betrayal of working people.

They talk with conviction, passion and humour as they describe their experiences.

A screening of the 30-minute film will be shown at Lynemouth Miner’s Institute in Bridge Road, on Tuesday at 7.30pm.

It is open to all, but former workers from the coal industry and those with an interest in its history are particularly welcome.