The literary life of EDWARD JAMES, author,reviewer, occasional poet and former pension adviser to the government of Kyrgyzstan
This week I visited The Big Pit, a coal mine in South Wales (Blaenavon) which closed in 1979 and reopened as a museum in 1983. Visitors go underground to the coal face kitted out with helmets and lamps, guided by former miners. Above ground there is a fascinating array of exhibits and one can eat cheaply at the miners’ canteen – unfortunately the pithead baths are not in use but are open to visit.
There was even a mock-up of the zinc bath in front of the range, where the miner’s wife scrubbed down her husband after his shift (no re-enactments!), as described in my memoir ‘Changing Places’, published on this blog. I took a photo and have added it to the relevant page.