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Pit Wheel by Richard Ion

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This winding gear for raising and lowering the colliers out of and in to the shafts was once a common sight around the UK but now confined to museums: all the deep pits are now closed.
The romantic in me sees happy, blackened but beaming faces emerging after a good day’s work, camaraderie and community spirit more than compensating for any hardship endured.
The realist sees the lucky ones returning from a seriously dangerous job and looking forward to an early death from pneumoconiosis or similar.
Brave men and this is inevitably and respectively a tribute to them.

Taken more than 30 years ago in Etruria, part of the Potteries in England and using Ilford HP4 and then Ilford line film to create the very high contrast result.


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