The Mines Rescue Service

Following several colliery disasters during the 19th century, calls came to set up a Mines Rescue Service.

By 1913 there were 10 Mines Rescue Stations in the south Wales coalfield.

Man wearing rescue equipment, [1950s-1970s] (DNCB/14/4/159/5/22)

Rescuers were specially trained miners. They knew the collieries and were familiar with working underground.

Rescue apparatus training course certificate, 1920 (DNCB/15/10/3)

They were trained in using breathing apparatus and specialist rescue equipment, and delivering first aid. 

A ‘trambulance’ at Newlands Colliery, 1947 (DNCB/14/4/90/4)

They trained rescue teams at each colliery. Minutes of Dinas Rescue Station note that …each colliery should have a team of at least five men. They would be trained as a team and if called upon in an emergency would be familiar with each other.

Adjusting equipment at Loughor Rescue Station, 1952 (DNCB/14/4/155/27)

The work was physically and mentally challenging. Rescuemen were considered the elite of the mining industry.

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