Thursday, 20 October 2011

News - English Heritage brand Newcomen Beam Engine 'at risk' (Elsecar)

A listed building in South Yorkshire continues to be one of the most at risk, according to English Heritage.

English Heritage listed 10 key industrial sites on the at-risk register which included the Elsecar Newcomen Beam Engine.

Earlier this year the Heritage Lottery Fund [HLF] gave £40,500 to the Elsecar Heritage Centre to develop plans to restore the engine house.

The centre will submit plans next month and await a decision on its funding.

The Elsecar Heritage Centre, near Barnsley, estimates it will cost £500,000 to restore the engine back to working order, as well as developing and updating the visitor attraction, if it is awarded full funding by HLF in March 2012.

The engine, which was built by John Bargh of Chesterfield in 1795 at a cost of £167, was used to pump water out of the colliery in Elsecar to allow the exploitation of deeper coal seams until 1923.

The engine was placed on the at-risk register by English Heritage last year and is thought to be the only remaining example in situ.

The engine was later replaced with electric pumps, and remained working until the 1950s.

The site of a former ironworks and colliery is now an antique centre and used by local craftsmen and women as workshops, as well as showcasing the village's rich past.

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