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The Railways and Locomotives of The LILLESHALL COMPANY

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ISBN:9781903266861, 136 Pages, Hardback.

The area around today’s Telford, and specifically that of Coalbrookdale, is well known as the cradle of the industrial revolution. However, the story goes much further back than Abraham Darby. The Roman settlement of ‘Uscocona’ became that latterly known as Oakengates. The Romans are known to have worked outcrops of coal in this part of East Shropshire, and this mining continued on right through the Middle Ages. Locally, the ‘longwall’ technique of mining was developed, which involved excavating along the lateral face of the coal seam, rather than ‘head first’ into the seam. Such small pits were typically only 60 to 100 feet deep at the start of the industrial revolution, and many of this depth continued, even into the 20th century.

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