Dyffryn Tanat and Region Development Trust
Chairman Kenton Owen QGM
Consultant David Higman MBE
Charity Reg. No. 1139072
Company Reg. No. 6905623
The Sweeney Pit was sunk by Thomas Ireland & Co. about 1836 and is shown on the 1837 Ordnance Survey map just to the right of the Oswestry to Llanymynech road (the current B5069) at Grid Reference 32893274). The pit was leased by Edward Croxon in 1842 who had also acquired the lease to the Drill Colliery a short distance north west from Thomas Ireland & Co. The coal seams worked by the Sweeney shafts were Rover at 419 feet, Black Shale at 435 feet, Upper Four Foot at 477 feet and Thick or Six Foot at the foot of the shaft at 499 feet. The Sweeney pit was however prone to flooding and from the mid 19th Century the coal seams were worked from the Drill Colliery.
1875 map showing the mine shaft in the Sweeney Brick Works
Source Wilf Jones
Blown up image of the Sweeney Brick Works showing the mine shaft in 1875.. At present the whole site has been sold for housing (November 2014)
Tracing of a document showing the underground workings leading out from the Sweeney Colliery about 1840.
Source Gordon Hillier
Tracing showing the underground workings of Sweeney Pit in the 1840/50's.
Source Gordon Hillier.
This document shows the extreme difficulty that the miners would have encountered as the dug down to find the coal seams. After digging down through various stratas, it was not until they reached 370 feet did they find the first coal seam (2 inches thick!!!) They continued down to 419 feet where they found a 2foot 3 inches seam. Down again to 433 feet to a 2 foot 9 inches seam. 435 feet to a 1foot 3 inches seam. 477 feet to a 2 foot seam and 499 feet to a thick seam ofr 3feet 4 inches..