Derek Medhurst

Photos of the East Kent mining heritage

Sevenoaks Camera Club runs an annual “team challenge”, an unusual competition (for the camera club world, at least) for which teams of three members are challenged to produce a set of six prints on a set theme.

In 2013 the theme was “Industrial” and the group I was in decided to focus on the East Kent mining industry. We knew little about it at the start, except that it had existed. But as well as making visits to the area to take a large selection of photos, we read up and generally researched the subject so that we had a better understanding. In a way it was about respecting the industry and the Kent miners, not just taking the pictures.

On our few relatively short visits we incidentally met a number of local people who had been miners, both on the street and at the Kent Miners' Festival. They were very helpful when we explained what we were doing, and it really did still feel like a community. As a token of thanks we donated a set of our six competition prints to the local mining heritage organisation.

Sadly the competition judge did not think our panel of pictures was the best on the night: “we were robbed”. The photos that follow are some of the many that I took for selection for our entry, plus a number of share certificates for the mining companies that we found during our research.

  • Spoil heap detail
  • Spoil heap detail
  • Spoil heap being reclaimed
  • Spoil heap being reclaimed
  • Spoil heap detail
  • Spoil heap heaps!
  • Snowdown colliery waste
  • Old buildings
  • The Miner statue
  • Detail of the Miner
  • Payday at Snowdown Colliery
  • Payday at Snowdown Colliery
  • Kent Miners' Festival 2013
  • Kent Miners' Festival 2013
  • Kent Miners' Festival 20013
  • Kent Miners' Festival 2013
  • Kent Miners' Festival history display
  • Kent Miners' Festival history display
  • Kent Miners' Festival history display
  • Kent Miners' Festival history display
  • Snowdown colliery dilapidated buildings
  • Snowdown colliery buildings
  • RIP Kent coal: tribute left at Snowdown colliery gate
  • At Aylesham
  • Share certificate
  • Share certificate
  • Share certificate
  • Share certificate