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Coal seam worth £200m to be mined by co-op colliery

People are being invited to buy shares in a new colliery that is expected to start mining in September, the Wakefield Express has reported.

New Crofton Co-op Colliery is expected to mine around 200,000 tonnes of coal a year, creating 50 jobs and supplying to the power industry.

The £11.5m mine is being set up as a workers’ cooperative, which will see profits re-invested into social enterprises.

It is being backed with a community share issue that the Coalfield Community Investment Society (CCIS), set up to raise funds for the mine. It hopes to raise £1m by the end of June.

The Crofton colliery will be a drift mine using sloping tunnels to extract coal from shallow seams.

The drift mining technique has lower costs than traditional deep mines, which have vertical shafts sunk hundreds of metres below the ground.

The Crofton mine is expected to extract 4.9m tonnes of coal over the next 20 years from a seam worth around £200m.

Around a third of domestic energy in the UK is still generated by coal, despite moves to use more forms of renewable energy.

A CCIS project at Drax Power Station near Selby has been backed with money from the EU.

The Crofton mine is preparing to open after the government declined to provide funding to save Kellingley Colliery, which employs 700 people.

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