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Bobs (Straits) Brook
'Bobs Brook', Turners Hill Wood
© photo CDM 2007.
In the depths of Turners Hill Wood, 'Bobs Brook' also known as Straits Brook, fed by local freshwater springs is reduced to only a trickle during the summer months.
Coal mining dominated this landscape but now the area has been reclaimed by nature, a large concrete 'cap' to one of the pits and the old steel winding cables of Ellowes Colliery may still be found in the undergrowth.
The brook winds its way through the wood and leaves Gornal where it passes under the road at Askew Bridge and onward towards the River Stour.
'Bob' was not in fact a person, but the brook takes its name from a coal mining term, early mining in the valley, before the industrial scale collieries, would have used bell pits, these employed a short vertical shaft and the coal was removed directly below and winched to the surface in buckets.
A cross-section of such a pit would resemble a bell, these pits were called 'bob holes' locally.
The bob holes were small concerns, no shoring would be used, and once the small quantity of coal was removed, the pit was closed and a new one sunk nearby.
See mining in Gornal
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