Florence Mine © Copyright Peter Eckersley and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence

Florence Mine
© Copyright Peter Eckersley and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence

Sunk in 1914, it was worked with the Ullcoats mine from 1917, until it finally closed on 13th September 1968, following nationalisation.

Beckermet Mines (part of the British Steel Corporation) took it over in 1969, pumped out the water and linked it to Beckermet Mine. They drew ore up Beckermet shaft for Workington steel works. However as part of a rationalisation process, the British Steel Corporation closed the mine on October 3rd 1980.

A number of redundant workers from the mine, invested their redundancy payments in the pit and re-opened part of the underground workings – as the Egremont Mining Co. to make the pit the last deep working iron ore mine in Europe.

Although the demand for iron ore has fallen, the mine has been producing ore and Heamatite for the annealing industry, products for the cosmetic industry and high quality minerals.

Unfortunately Florence was finally forced to closed in 2007 due to the cost of pumping; British Nuclear Fuels Ltd, who had been paying the pumping costs as part of a deal whereby they were allowed to extract water lower down the river, no longer required the water and ceased their support.

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