Monday, October 7, 2013

News: Kiveton Pithead baths demolished

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Rotherham-based Ron Hull Demolition is carrying out the job of demolishing the historic pithead baths at Kiveton Park Colliery.

The Rotherham colliery closed in 1994 when 800 miners were left without work. Since then, there has been much debate of the use of the grade II listed buildings that were paid for by the miners themselves.

Under ownership of now defunct RDA, Yorkshire Forward, they were saved from the wrecking ball with plans put forward for a £4m creative enterprise centre in 2005. However, the plans never developed and subsequent approved plans for the conversion of the baths to apartments, a cafĂ© and offices in 2008, also never developed due to the economic downturn.

With the transfer of ownership to the government's Homes and Communities Agency (HCA), a planning application for demolition was approved last year as it was considered a liability, unfit for alternative use and suffering from decline and disrepair for 18 years.

Built in 1938, the structure was finally taken down in just a matter of days. The last part to go was the landmark water tower.

David Wall, contracts director with Ron Hull Demolition, said: "As part of our preparation work on the site we did save everything of historic interest including the huge Royal Doulton troughs that were used when the miners filled their water bottles before going underground, as well as various signs and other fixtures and fittings. They are going to several mining museums and collections.

A former Kiveton miner, 75-year-old George Smith, was re-united with the door of locker 927, which he was allocated almost half a century ago when he started work at the pit.

David added: "The demolition itself has been very straightforward. The buildings have all been brought down and the clear up operation is now underway.

"Brickwork, concrete and rubble is being crushed on the site, a process that we are expecting to complete in another week or so.

"Meanwhile metal, timber and other materials are being moved to the Ron Hull Group's recycling centre in Rotherham, which is one of the most advanced facilities of its type in the country. It is a zero-to-landfill operation, so absolutely nothing is wasted."

There are no proposals yet to redevelop the site once it is cleared.

Ron Hull Demolition website

Images: Ron Hull Demolition

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