British Universities Film & Video Council

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Denby Washery

Series

Series Name
Mining Review 1st Year

Issue

Issue No.
4
Date Released
Dec 1947
Length of issue (in feet)
858
Stories in this Issue:
  1. 1The Forrest of Dean
  2. 2Shepherds from the mine
  3. 3Denby Washery

Story

Story No. within this Issue
3 / 3
Summary
BFI Summary - The coal washeries at Denbigh.
COI Commentary - To the Denby Hall Washery in Nottinghamshire, come trucks from three local collieries. Eventually, when drifts have been dug, the coal will arrive underground. But for the present, tipplers are being used.
It’s a modern plant employing a new process of coal cleaning.
The idea’s simple enough.
A heavy liquid is prepared of barium sulphate, clay and water. Coal will just float on the surface ... but shale sinks to the bottom ... and of course, middlings go half way.
To avoid overloading the plant, big shale is first picked out by hand ...the remaining coal is crushed to a maximum size of seven inches ... and here powerful electric magnets remove any bits of iron.
The coal is now ready to be cleaned ... and after being screened into various sizes it’s passed into large tanks containing the heavy liquid ... clean coal floats and falls into elevator buckets. It’s hoisted out and sent along to the slag heap by conveyor.
But what of the middlings? Well, they’re taken out by an upward current of water into another compartment. Then it’s broken up and treated again until it’s either coal or shale.
All the products are then water-sprayed to remove the barium sulphate. It’s too valuable to lose, because it can be used again.
Here the smallest clean coal is being separated from the shale by a system of water currents.
The washing plant itself handles over 300 tons of coal an hour ... for 15 hours a day. Yet it’s efficiently run by as few as seven men per shift.
Their main jobs are to watch the machinery and take frequent samples of the heavy liquid ... and by weighing check the density is correct.
There’s no waste at Denby, Even the liquid is cleaned to remove particles of coal ... and then in this plant is collected ... dried on the revolving drum, and scraped off to be used for boiler-fuel or coal bricks.
There’s nothing further to be done ... so the clean coal is screened to various sizes ... and taken by conveyor direct to the railway wagons which are waiting below ... and thence carried to all parts of the country.
This is science applied to coal mining in a big way ... speeding delivery ... reducing wastage ... and setting a new reputation for the industry. From coal-face to consumer in one ceaseless stream.
Keywords
Mining
Locations
Wales; Denbighshire
Written sources
The National Archives INF 6   /389 Used for synopsis
British Film Institute Databases
Hogenkamp, A. P., unpublished DPhil thesis   pxii.
Credits:
Production Co.
Crown Film Unit
Cutter
Jocelyn Jackson
Cutter
John Legard
Producer
John Taylor
Commentator
Maurice Denham
Director
Max Anderson
Sponsor
Ministry of Fuel and Power

This series is held by:

Film Archive

Name
British Film Institute (BFI)
Email
For BFI National Archive enquiries:
nonfictioncurators@bfi.org.uk
For commercial/footage reuse enquiries:
footage.films@bfi.org.uk
Web
http://collections-search.bfi.org.uk/web
Phone
020 7255 1444
Fax
020 7580 7503
Address
21 Stephen Street
London W1T 1LN
Notes
The BFI National Archive also preserves the original nitrate film copies of British Movietone News, British Paramount News, Empire News Bulletin, Gaumont British News, Gaumont Graphic, Gaumont Sound News and Universal News (the World War II years are covered by the Imperial War Museum).
Series held
View all series held by British Film Institute (BFI)

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