Monument record M2602 - Blidworth Colliery Village


WORKERS VILLAGE (Early 20th Century to Late 20th Century)


Grid reference Centred SK 59601 56347 (1207m by 610m)
Map sheet SK55NE
District Newark
Civil Parish Blidworth, Newark


Type and Period (1)

Full Description

To the E of original village is one of the largest of the carefully planned colliery settlements built in the Notts coalfield in the interwar period. (1)
One of the later planned settlements on the concealed coalfield, built for the new mine opened in 1926. (2)
Over 800 houses were built by the Industrial Housing Association for the Newstead Company at Blidworth Colliery Village between 1924 and 1927. (3)
Blidworth Colliery was sunk 1925-26 by the Newstead Colliery Company and was called Newstead No.2 until 1930. A colliery village was built by the Industrial Housing Association (IHA) between 1925–7 on a site to the north-east of the original settlement. (4)
The Newstead Colliery Company was a joint venture by two firms originating from the Chesterfield area of North East Derbyshire; Staveley Coal and Iron Company, and the Sheepbridge Coal and & Iron Company. They had previously collaborated at Newstead in the Leen Valley district of Nottinghamshire. On the eve of nationalisation the Staveley–Sheepbridge group had the greatest output of any colliery undertaking in the country. The pit at Blidworth was closed in 1989 and the colliery site has been developed as an industrial estate. (4)
Housing - The settlement was laid out and built by the Industrial Housing Association (IHA) for the colliery company on the Garden City principles common at that time. The layout is on a relaxed grid pattern with set-backs or green bays to break up the building line and a semi-circular road ‘The Crescent’ close to the colliery, which is the site of the mission hall. It was one of the largest projects undertaken by the IHA, with 838 houses. Houses conform to the usual designs used by the IHA and include a type of corner house, used at street intersections, designed to add interest and variety to the street scene as well as semi-detached and terraced housing. Houses are of brick and some half-rendered with front and rear gardens. The management structure of the colliery company clearly influenced the design of the estate. The colliery manager resided at ‘Red House’, on Belle Vue Lane, which is a large, detached building near the colliery entrance and originally with spacious grounds. Neighbouring this to the west, the head engineers and under managers were located at four large semi-detached parlour houses on Belle Vue Lane: The Villa, Inglewood, Westbury House and Pendenis. To the rear, the most desirable houses for colliery deputies were generally located on The Crescent, while a mixture of house types was provided towards Dale Lane, most of which were designed with 3 bedrooms, scullery, ground floor bathroom and living room. By 1966 additional council housing south of Dale Road had been built and the settlement has since expanded with infill housing in areas such as The Crescent and recent developments between the old village and the colliery village.
Amenities - Sports fields and allotments were provided as well as a miners’ welfare institute. This is shown on a map of 1939 and possibly designed by George Warner in what was largely an arts and crafts design but with a beaux-arts plan and some neoclassical detailing. Since the closure of the colliery it has been demolished and replaced with a featureless Miners’ Welfare Social Centre. St Andrew’s Mission Hall was provided as an additional place of worship for the colliery community and for social events. The hall was dedicated in 1935 and built on land given by the colliery company. It was financed through the Diocesan Loan Fund, repaid through local fund raising. It is a modest Swedish style building with exterior red cladding and simple open roof structure. A Primitive Methodist chapel was built on Dale Lane in traditional Gothic style in 1927–8. It has been converted for retail use. The Forest Folk Inn was built by Home Brewery as a ‘Trust Public House’, to a design by the Nottinghamshire architect L. Dodsley which was subject to approval by the IHA architects. This scheme was devised to exercise control over designs and the brewery was expected to make contributions to community projects. The pub was named after James Prior’s 1901 novel, Forest Folk, which was set in rural Blidworth. Following demolition in 2005 some of the stained glass on the theme of Sherwood Forest animals was saved and relocated to the mission hall. A site for a school is shown on the IHA plan where it now stands and in 1924 a decision was taken by the County Council to provide a new school called Blidworth Oaks. The building is of brick in simple classical style, probably to designs by the County Architect’s team. After the Second World War Nottinghamshire County Council provided a library on New Lane, using the prefabricated modernist CLASP system with concrete panels and curtain wall glazing. On the edge of the village Mansfield Brewery built the Jolly Friar on Dale Lane in the 1960s. Amid its woodland backdrop it was designed in the style of a modernist lodge with hung tiles and a suitably jolly zig zag roof. This was recently demolished and replaced with new housing. (4)

Grid ref centred.

<1> Smith DM, 1965, The Industrial Archaeology of the East Midlands, p 235 (Published document). SNT1304.

<2> Palmer M & Neaverson P, 1992, Industrial Landscapes of the East Midlands, p 104 (Monograph). SNT5.

<3> Thoroton Society, 1979, TTS, p 71 (Published document). SNT392.

<4> Nottinghamshire County Council, 2022, Model Villages of the Nottinghamshire Coalfield (Published document). SNT5309.

Sources/Archives (4)

  • <1> Published document: Smith DM. 1965. The Industrial Archaeology of the East Midlands. p 235.
  • <2> Monograph: Palmer M & Neaverson P. 1992. Industrial Landscapes of the East Midlands. Phillimore & Co Ltd. p 104.
  • <3> Published document: Thoroton Society. 1979. TTS. 83. p 71.
  • <4> Published document: Nottinghamshire County Council. 2022. Model Villages of the Nottinghamshire Coalfield. Nottinghamshire County Council.

Finds (0)

Protected Status/Designation

  • None recorded

Related Monuments/Buildings (1)

Related Events/Activities (0)

Record last edited

May 17 2023 11:58AM

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