Alternative Reference number1997/103
TitleNational Coal Board (British Coal Corporation) - North Eastern and Yorkshire Division
AdminHistoryThe National Coal Board
The Coal Industry Nationalisation Act, 1946, provided for the complete nationalisation of the coal industry. On 12 July 1946, the National Coal Board (NCB) was established and on the vesting date, 1 January 1947, coal mines were taken into public ownership. The NCB was initially run by a board, appointed by the Minister of Fuel and Power, who presented the board's reports to Parliament. General powers over the NCB later transferred to the Ministry of Technology (from Oct 1969), the Department of Trade and Industry (from Oct 1970), and the Department of Energy (from Jan 1974). The NCB was headed by a chairman and deputy chairman and the other members of the board took charge of an executive department or research establishment. The NCB became the British Coal Corporation on 1 Jan 1987. It ceased trading in Dec 1994 and was wound up in 2004.

From its inception, the National Coal Board delegated responsibility to eight divisional boards, which had been set up by the end of 1946. Each was appointed by and collectively responsible to the national board. The divisions were based geographically on the main groups of coalfields: Scottish, Northern, North-Eastern, North-Western, East Midlands, West Midlands, South-Western, South-Eastern.

Under the divisions the coalfields were grouped into Areas, each in the charge of an Area General Manager. In 1967 a new three-tier structure of regional and local organisation replaced the previous layers, the collieries being directly subject to Area organisation, in its turn directly responsible to the board. Each Area was directly responsible to Board Headquarters through the Area Director who was responsible for the day to day running. Decisions about policy affecting collieries were made at Area level by the Area Director and confirmation/agreement was then sought from the Board.

In 1975 there were about 250 collieries, managed by Colliery General Managers, Agent Managers, or Colliery Managers, according to their size and complexity, directly accountable to one of the Area Directors. Each of these was assisted by a Deputy Director (Mining), a Deputy Director (Administration) and a Production Manager. Units were normally classified as collieries but this term also included other functions such as stores, workshops, open cast mines and non-mining activities such as brick works, coke ovens and briquette plants.

The North Eastern Division
From 1947, the Yorkshire coalfield was managed by the North Eastern Division (renamed the Yorkshire Division in 1962) of the National Coal Board. Under the Division, there were eight 'Areas' of the North Eastern Division, namely:

Area 1 (Worksop)
Area 2 (Doncaster)
Area 3 (Rotherham)
Area 4 (Carlton)
Area 5 (South Barnsley)
Area 6 (North Barnsley)
Area 7 (Wakefield)
Area 8 (Castleford)

In 1967 the National Coal Board underwent a major re-organisation and the 'Area' groupings were abolished. The Yorkshire Division was split into three new administrative areas: Doncaster Area, Barnsley Area and South Yorkshire Area. In 1988, these merged to become the South Yorkshire Area (renamed in 1990 as the South Yorkshire Group).

For more information see: Department of Energy and Climate Change, Appraisal report from Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) relating to records of the former National Coal Board (NCB) (latterly British Coal Corporation (BCC)) - a statutory corporation created in 1947 and wound up in 2004 (Jan 2014).
DescriptionCentral administrative records of the National Coal Board, North Eastern Division (from 1962 the Yorkshire Division) relating to responsibilities of headquarters departments and collieries.

Coal Industry Nationalisation Act (1946): Registration of Assets, 1947 - 1957 (BCC/1)

Carbonisation Department (BCC/2)
Estates Department (BCC/3)
Finance Department (BCC/4)
Industrial Relations Department (BCC/5)
Land and Minerals Department (BCC/6)
Legal Department (BCC/7)
Marketing Department (BCC/8)
Mining Department [formerly Production Department] (BCC/9)
Production Department [later Mining Department] (BCC/10)
Public Relations Department (BCC/11)
Secretary's Department (BCC/12)
Staff Department (BCC/13)
Statistics Department (BCC/14)

Directors' files (BCC/15)
Other Divisional/Area records (BCC/16)

Colliery records (BCC/17)
Askern Colliery
Brookhouse Colliery
Grange Colliery
Grimethorpe Colliery
Hatfield Colliery
Kiveton Park Colliery
Manvers Colliery
Monk Bretton Colliery
Orgreave Colliery
Redbrook Colliery
Rockingham Colliery
Rossington Colliery
Silverwood Colliery
Smithywood Colliery
Steetley Colliery
Stocksbridge Colliery
Thorncliffe Colliery
Thorne Colliery
Thurcroft Colliery
Treeton Colliery
Walton Colliery
Wentworth Silkstone Colliery
Darfield Main Colliery

Records of NCB Opencast Executive (later British Coal Opencast) (BCC/18)
Records of National Smokeless Fuels Limited and Thomas Ness Limited (BCC/19)
NCB Photographic library (BCC/20)
Miscellaneous publications (BCC/21)

NB. although the North Eastern Division also included Area 7 (Wakefield) and Area 8 (Castleford), records relating to these Areas were transferred to Leeds Archives (now West Yorkshire Joint Archive Service).
Date1905 - 1994
Extentc.1,400 items
AccessConditionsInformation in staff records may be subject to access restrictions under the Data Protection Act, or may be subject to exemptions from the Freedom of Information Act. For further information please refer to a member of staff.
RelatedMaterialSheffield City Archives:
Records of South Yorkshire Colliery Companies (pre-vesting), 1614 - 1960s (COAL)

H.M. Mines and Quarries Inspectorate - registers of accidents in mines, 1960 - 1987 (HSE/2)

Opencast mining papers, Wentworth Woodhouse, 1941 - 1971 (WWM/O/1-84)

Alan Hill, The South Yorkshire Coalfield: a history and development, Tempus: 2001 (HIL/BUS)

The National Archives:
Records of the National Coal Board, North Eastern Division, 1947 - 1990s (COAL48)

The Coal Authority:
Holds various historical records including the coal holdings register (CHR), coal licences register, coal abandonment plans, photographs, property deeds and documents etc. (contact the Coal Authority, 200 Lichfield Lane, Mansfield, Nottinghamshire NG18 4RG)
AcquisitionSourceThese items were deposited at Sheffield Archives by British Coal Corporation in 1997.
ArchNoteCatalogue prepared by Cheryl Bailey, Aug 2014; later amendments and additions made Apr 2019.
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