Land of the rising sun (colliery)

360 view from the top of pit shaft number 1

(Much cooler 360 images can be viewed here & here)

Directly below my muddy shoes, almost 760 feet under the earth 1,400 men once hewed a living from the hot, dark, grimy pit of the land.

Less than 40 years ago the landscape would be scarred with soot, sound, smoke, grime and fire as armies of men and boys earned a living mining coal as their fathers and grand fathers had done before them.

But now it’s silent, calm and green with just me and a bike looking out over the Tyneside skyline.

I’m standing at the top of a former pit head that was once part of one of the world’s largest coal mines.

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