Florence mine is just a few miles away from Haig Colliery, so as I was in the area (and West Cumbria is not somewhere I visit regularly) it struck me as being worth a look. Unlike the rest of the mines on my recent mining binge, Florence was an ironstone (haematite) mine rather than coal.
Although I knew it was still standing, I knew it had been disused for years, and wasn’t sure of its current status so had planned to get the side on profile photograph from across the adjacent field. However, the hedgerow had grown significantly since the Google Streetview car had recorded the road. Fortunately the adjacent Florence Arts Centre – which is on the same site and uses some of the old surface buildings – was open, so I just parked up and went for a look round.
More about the history of the place in the next post, but it’s been disused for a good few years now and is looking somewhat forlorn, and the adjacent yard was equally derelict overgrown. It contained all kind of old rusty stuff (likely mining related but I’m no expert), which was great but not what I was after until I noticed a spot from where I could just about get the shot I was after. It wasn’t optimal but there have been few spots that have been in this project – I’ve stood in a car park, pavements, and a pile of rubble for my other photographs. I know that when the Becher’s were in Britain, they had a letter from the Coal Board head office that basically said, let these two go where they please, that they could hand to the colliery manager of the sites they visited, and so their photographs were taken from adjacent headgear or surface buildings.
And now there are six! Time to go to two rows, not sure what I’ll do next unless I take two more in one day again!