Coal in Wales
Mining is of course not something exclusively Belgian. Coal has been and still is mined worldwide. Particularly during the 19th and 20th century, the coal industry provided the engine which powered the global economy.
Many European countries share a similar history. In recognition of this the mining museum is currently showing an exhibition of photographs: ‘South Wales and Coal’.
South Wales, located in the south-west corner of the UK, was one of the most important coal mining regions in the world by the end of the 19th century. In 1913 the mining industry employed almost 250,000 miners. Coal mining also lasted a good deal longer, and coal was still being mined in Wales until only a couple of years ago.
The photographer Carl Uytterhaegen visited South Wales in 1979 and 1980 a number of times to photograph the activities in and around the Welsh coal mines.