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Mining Review 1/11: No Tipping Here (1948)


Main image of Mining Review 1/11: No Tipping Here (1948)
Mining Review 1st Year No. 11: No Tipping Here
July 1948
35mm, black and white, 2 mins
Production CompanyData Film Productions
SponsorNational Coal Board

A look at how surplus dirt generated through coal mining is being recycled and reprocessed.

Show full synopsis

Several Mining Review items examined the impact of pollution, though they generally focused on the health and economic side. This one looks at an aesthetic problem: as a side-effect of mining coal, vast amounts of dirt end up being piled outside the colliery in unsightly heaps, or 'pit-tips'.

So No Tipping Here explores ways by which these can be reduced or eliminated, and the surplus dirt pressed back into productive service. The simplest method occurs in Coventry, where the dirt is immediately returned underground as soon as it's been separated from the coal. But in Blyth in Northumberland, there is a more practical use for the dirt: it can be used to counter the effect of coastal erosion, with dirt and rubble being used to construct seawalls.

The item also shows how scientists are working out new methods of dealing with the dirt, not least investigating whether trees can be persuaded to grow in it. If their experiments are a success, the dirt can be used as a base for new forests - which, as the commentator points out, will also provide a ready source of timber. As ever with Mining Review, the economic angle remained paramount.

Michael Brooke

Click titles to see or read more

Video Clips
Complete item (1:56)
Complete newsreel (9:45)
Mining Review 1/11: A Pit Is Reborn - Nantgarw (1948)
Mining Review 1/11: British Ambassador (1948)
Mining Review 1/11: Coo! (1948)
Mining Review 1/11: Dust - Rehabilitation (1948)
Mining Review 10/11: Area Profile - Ashington (1957)
Mining Review: 1st Year (1947-48)