EMIAC 79: Swanning around Swannington

Programme Details

Hough Mill

Hough Mill, courtesy David Lyne, LIHS Archives.

Organised by Leicestershire Industrial Society and held on the 22nd May 2010 in Swannington.

Conference programme:

09:30 Registration with tea/coffee

09:50 Welcome to Swannington

10:00 Leicester & Swannington Railway

10:45 Refurbishment of Swannington Hough Mill

11:30 break

11:45 Landscape evidence of Coalmining in the Coleorton Coalfield

12:30 Any Questions ...

12:45 EMIAC Meeting for Notices

13:00 Lunch

14:00 Site visiting in and around Swannington. Stout footwear is advised.

Swannington is a special village with an industrial history. Set in the heart of of the National Forest, it was once the centre for all the early coal mining activities of North West Leicestershire. The first manorial rights were granted in 1278 to Sir John Talbot, who controlled the 13th century coal workings. In 1520 the manor passed to William Wyggeston, a prominent Leicester business man, who eventually set up various trusts in order to preserve Swannington’s village status. Expansion of Swannington began in the early 1700s when new deep coal seams were worked, leading to an influx of miners and their families from Shropshire. A map published in 1779 clearly indicates the working of 37 mines in the Swannington district. In addition several abattoirs and tanyards operated in the village. Shoemaking was a thriving separate industry. Swannington achieved prominence in 1829/32 with the opening of the Leicester & Swannington Railway which was promoted by local mine owners William Stenson and John Ellis in conjunction with George Stephenson.

Postscript to the conference

The following website provides additional background to the papers presented:

Please note: Although checked at the time of writing, NIAG cannot be held responsible for the validity of this link or the integrity of this site.