The Price of Coal

08 August 2013

Dr Steven Thompson
Dr Steven Thompson

Today, Thursday 8th August, historian Dr Steven Thompson from Aberystwyth University will discuss the perils faced by miners in Wales in their day to day lives on the University stand at the National Eisteddfod in Denbigh.

Based on research by the Wellcome Trust, Dr Thompson will consider the consequences of working in such dangerous, unhealthy conditions by reflecting on various original sources such as ballads, poetry, newspapers and images.

He says: “South Wales was widely regarded as the most dangerous coalfield in Britain as a result of the high accident rates, the greater perils of occupational disease, particularly chest disease, and the greater rates of industrial disablement”.

“I’m sure all of us who grew up in mining communities remember the numerous men missing a leg or struggling to catch their breath.  Disability was all around us and yet was almost invisible because of its everyday character. This session will focus on the human costs of coal and highlight the experiences and attitudes of those individuals who worked in the industry", concluded Dr Thompson.

The Price of Coal: Accidents, injuries and disability in the coal industry in Wales: Thursday, 8th of August at 11am. Aberystwyth University stand at the National Eisteddfod.

About the Wellcome Trust
The Wellcome Trust is a global charitable foundation dedicated to achieving extraordinary improvements in human and animal health. It supports the brightest minds in biomedical research and the medical humanities. The Trust’s breadth of support includes public engagement, education and the application of research to improve health. It is independent of both political and commercial interests.


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Elinor Howells, Communications and Public Affairs, Aberystwyth University
01970 628551 / 07807 077856 /