Shotton Surface Mine Reaches One Million Tonne Landmark

March 25, 2010 | Brenkley News

Workers at the Shotton Surface Mine in Northumberland have marked a major milestone after extracting the millionth tonne of coal from the site after only 22 months.

The Shotton mine, which has been active since the beginning of 2008, is located on the Blagdon Estate to the west of Cramlington, and now employs 125 people directly on site as well as supporting over 200 jobs in the Banks Group.

It injects over £12m into the regional economy every year through salaries, and suppliers of goods and services.

Around 3.4 million tonnes of coal, two million tonnes of shale and 750,000 tonnes of fireclay were originally approved to be mined over the eight-year lifetime of the scheme, but Banks has recently announced that it intends to apply for permission to extract an additional two million tonnes of coal from within the mine’s existing boundaries.

Banks will now be asking for an extension of the overall life of the site by two years to enable the additional coal supplies to be recovered.

Three public exhibitions have been held in the area recently to provide information on the new proposals to local residents, and a planning application for the additional work is scheduled to be submitted to Northumberland County Council later this year.

Mark Dowdall, Banks’ environment and community director, adds: “Work on the site has progressed very well, a fact which is especially impressive given the extremes of weather we’ve endured since work began, and reaching this milestone so quickly is a testament to the quality of our workforce at the Shotton site and the investment that we have made in new mining plant.

“Shotton continues the tradition we have maintained for more than 32 years of mining coal in North East England, making a significant contribution to the regional economy and providing important local employment opportunities.

“We are recognised as setting the standard for our industry in terms of both effective environmental practices and commitment to building productive relationships with local communities around our sites.

“We are continuing to work with local residents around our new proposals, and hope the economic benefits and the continuity of employment provided by being able to do so will be recognised through the planning process.”

Anyone who would like more information on the new Shotton proposals can contact Banks community relations manager Jeannie Kielty on 0191 378 6100 or via enquiries@banksgroup.co.uk

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