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UK Coal sets out plan for opencast mine in Staffordshire

World Coal,

UK coal has submitted a planning application for an opencast coal mine in Staffordshire to the county council for approval.

Bignall End has been targeted by the coal mining company, which hopes to excavate 450,000 t of coal from the site in an opencast operation over a two and a half year period.

The proposed site could potentially encroach on the old site of the Diglake pit, where 77 miners who died during a mining disaster in 1895 are still buried.

UK Coal said there would be no disturbance of the Diglake site, hoping to ease concerns voiced by opponents to the proposed mine.

The miners died when the coal mine flooded, but their bodies were never recovered.

“Our sympathies are with the families of those lost at the Diglake disaster of 1895,” a UK Coal spokesperson said. “We are, after all, a coal mining company and we regularly hold and attend similar memorials to colleagues and friends lost in the industry. The planning application [submitted to Staffordshire County Council] will be designed to ensure the disaster area is not disturbed.”

The company also said that its proposed coal mine would create 60 local jobs.

It said plans had been amended over recent months, according to feedback from over 250 people who attended consultation exhibitions.

David Green, from UK Coal, said: “We’ve adopted the industry standard to make sure that old deep mines aren’t disturbed and we’re absolutely certain there will be no disturbance of the Diglake disaster site as a result.” 

Edited from various sources by Sam Dodson

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