The Woodpark name first appears around 1860, but it was based on the Deep Pit of the older Copperas House Colliery. Before 1860 it had been grouped as part of Fairbottom colliery, but appears to date from around 1836. By 1850 the colliery was linked to a basin on the Manchester and Ashton Under Lyne canal by a 1.42 km long tramway.

Messrs Leeses & Booth worked Woodpark between 1860 and 1865, while they were also working Fairbottom. The 1.2 metre thick Black Mine was worked at a depth of 355 metres at the Deep Pit. It must have been nearing exhaustion by 1869, when the Fairbottom Colliery Co. took over, because in 1873 the Earl of Stamford and Warrington agreed with the Lees that the remaining Two Foot and Peacock Mines could be worked. The Chamber Colliery Co. Ltd were running the colliery by 1880 and it worked both of the latter seams until both were exhausted in 1899. Their replacement was the Old Man Mine, and the shafts were deepened to it in 1897-99. It was worked until around 1918.

In 1911, the company drove cross-measures drifts across the Chamber Fault into the Roger Mine, which was worked from 1912 until 1947. The New Mine, which replaced the Old Man, was working by 1920. An area of the Great Mine was worked from 1938 to 1944, when the Arley (= Royley) Mine was developed.

Under the National Coal Board the Colonel Mine was worked from 1947, and the Arley Mine was discontinued in 1950. Because Woodpark’s reserves were nearer to Ashton Moss and Bradford collieries, it was decided to close it and work them from the latter two. Closure came in March 1955.


  • NMRS Records, Gazetteer of British Collieries
  • Fanning, G. Oldham Coal (British Mining No.68, 2001)
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