Share this story Share on Facebook icon Share on Twitter icon Share on Pinterest icon Share on Google Plus icon Share on Linked In icon Share via Email icon

UK's first National Mining Memorial Centre opened at National Mining Museum Scotland

The UK's first single central facility for understanding and commemorating the mining industry has opened at the National Mining Museum Scotland. Scotland's coalfield communities now have a new place to remember the victims of their dangerous industry in a new space which will allow people to join remembrance ceremonies or stage their own private remembrances.

The new centre was opened by Midlothian MP (and former miner) David Hamilton on 7 September 2013, the anniversary of the  Knockshinnoch Castle Colliery disaster, one of the most significant in Scottish mining history.  On that day in 1950, an inrush of moss and peat trapped 129 mean underground for several days while rescue teams worked desperately to reach them.  Although 116 men were eventually rescued, using breathing equipment, 13 men were lost. 

Museum Director, Rowan Brown said: 'The Friends, staff and volunteers at National Mining Museum Scotland have long held aspirations to create a facility that commemorated an industry which changed our culture, landscape, and economy at immense personal cost.

'We owe a huge debt to our funders, without whose generous support, the project could not have been realised. It is with great pride that we open the National Memorial Centre today, a resource dedicated to serving our mining communities, past, present and future.'

Senior Architect, Scott Lindsay from Purcell, who carried out the work on the museum, said: 'The new Memorial Centre is a fitting tribute to Scotland’s mining past and has reinstated a category A listed washer building that has stood empty for 30 years

'Our design complements the industrial character of this brick building, creating new displats and archive areas which explore the dangers faced by miners, leading up to a tall reflective space in the roof.'

The Mining Memorial Centre project has been funded by The Association of Independent Museums, BIFFA National Heritage Landmarks Scheme, The Mining Institute of Scotland, The Mining Institute of Scotland Trust, The Scottish Coal Industry Special Welfare Fund and the Friends of National Mining Museum Scotland.

It will span three floors of the old washer building in the museum’s home at the former Lady Victoria Colliery, revitalising space that has lain derelict since the Lady Vic closed in 1981.

The National Mining Memorial Centre will be open from 10am until 5pm (4pm in winter), seven days a week.

National Mining Museum Scotland, Lady Victoria Colliery, Newtongrange, Dalkeith EH22 4QN; tel: 0131 663 7519. Visit the National Mining Museum Scotland website.

Keep up to date with the latest history news, discoveries and research in every issue of History Scotland and Scottish Memories magazines, available in print and digital versions.


Back to "Family History" Category

13/09/2013 Share this story   Share on Facebook icon Share on Twitter icon Share on Pinterest icon Share on Google Plus icon Share on Linked In icon Share via Email icon

Recent Updates

New Highland Games Centre in Braemar to be completed by September 2018

Work is continuing on a new Highland Games Centre at the site of the Braemar Gathering, which will chart the ...

Free lunchtime lectures - Friends of Dundee City Archives

Enjoy a free history lecture on the first Thursday of the month, at Dundee City Archives. ...

What tartan can I wear?

Find out which tartan you can wear and discover which tartan is linked to your family name or the region ...

Moray student awarded scholarship for ground-breaking archaeology research

A Moray student is to undertake new research into the fate of farms which were set up on marginal land after ...

Other Articles

Two Scottish visitor attractions pass 2 million visitors landmark

Two of Scotland's most popular visitor attractions each welcomed more than 2 millions visitors during 2017, ...

The Tempest Database - exploring five centuries of extreme weather in Scotland

A new website which allows users to browse five centuries of weather data for Scotland and the rest of the UK ...

When is Tartan Day?

Find out when Tartan Day is, and how this special day is celebrated in Scotland, the original home of tartan, ...

Artefacts recovered from the Castle Midden and Back Walk in Stirling - Scottish archaeology news

A range of artefacts recovered from two sites on the edge of the medieval burgh and castle at Stirling sheds ...