Early in the morning of 25th September 1923, Redding Colliery was flooded by water from old workings higher up the brae to the south.
Sixty-six men were trapped, although twenty-one of them were rescued on that day through a disused shaft and five more found alive on 4th October after nine days entombment. The photograph shows an ambulance and people waiting for news, at the colliery office.

In Memoriam

Water from the flooded pit was pumped into the Union Canal using the mine's own pumps and also equipment brought in from other collieries. It was eventually pumped out at the rate of 40,000 gallons per hour. The official enquiry found that water from a disused quarry near Cockmalane Church at California had found its way into the old workings and had burst into Redding Pit from a sump or drain which had not been marked on the old pit's plans.

Redding pit


These houses were typical miner's cottages built in the nineteenth century. Water butts, with rones arranged to collect rainwater from the roofs, can be seen by the front doors.

Redding pit

Tom Paterson
(last updated 2nd Jan 2021)