Tunnel Re-Opening

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Artist's Impression

Timeline of Operations at Pwll-Du / Blaenavon

Summer 1985 PWLL DU Tyla branch entered with knee-deep water to crawl at roof collapse. Crawl passed on RH wall to second area of run-in underneath badly bowed roof. Waist deep water negotiated to final absolute roof collapse CG, SH
1/12/85 PWLL DU Tyla branch traversed to final collapse looking for bats SH
21/5/88 PWLL DU Pottery located at Garnddyrys and visit to Tyla entrance CG, RM, AG
29/5/88 PWLL DU Examination of Tyla Entrance CG, RM, DR, SMT
17/6/88 BLAENAVON Entrance found. CG
17/6/88 PWLL DU Garnddyrys branch entrance portal location determined CG
1988 - 1989 BLAENAVON Opening made into roof and exploration + dig carried out CG, CC, CB
+ others
14/5/89 PWLL DU Excavation to locate Garnddyrys branch entrance commenced CG, TP
21/7/89 PWLL DU Shaft down to Garnddyrys branch entrance covered with timbers from Big Pit CG, BD,JK
1989 July-Aug PWLL DU Shaft filled and Tyla tunnel entrance sealed COAL AUTHORITY
13/8/92 PWLL DU BLAENAVON Need for tunnel protection highlighted to Nick Leach CG
30/12/94 PWLL DU BLAENAVON Entrances and approaches scheduled as monuments CADW
7/11/98 PWLL DU BLAENAVON Entrances photography CG, AB
+ others
5/4/99 BLAENAVON 1st site visit to meet John Evans + Chris Barber CG, DMJ
7/4/99 BRETBY Obtaining Coal Authority plans CG, PRD
7/5/99 BLAENAVON PWLL DU 2nd site visit to discuss prospects CG, DMJ, PRD, JH, JL
6/6/99 PWLL DU Surveying from Tyla entrance to field sinkhole and meeting Trevor Fishlock on his Wildtracks walk CG, JC, KW, AF
11/6/99 PWLL DU
3rd site visit to meet Walters Group representative: Huw Richards TREG
17/7/99 PWLL DU Entry into Garnddyrys branch via digger-excavated shaft in field TREG
2/10/99 - 3/10/99 PWLL DU Pumping at Garnddyrys branch fails due to bad weather and small capacity of pump. Water sample taken for testing TREG
24/3/00 PWLL DU Tyla branch re-opened and traversed to final collapse - same condition as previously observed by SH and CG + Locked access gate installed TREG
25/3/00 PWLL DU Garnddyrys branch traversed to large chamber by DMJ TREG
15/4/00 PWLL DU Garnddyrys branch shaft tidied up and tunnel explored to bedding collapse, using pumped air supply TREG
30/9/00 BLAENAVON Roof entrance re-opened and tunnel traversed to chamber with roof collapse, showing signs of further breakdown since 1988 TREG
Nov 2000 BLAENAVON World Heritage Site confirmed UNESCO
15/1/01 PWLL DU Gwent Consultancy appointed to cost the restoration of both Pwll Du entrances TORFAEN COUNCIL
21/1/01 BLAENAVON Proposed restoration & presentation of southern approach: drawing completed by artist Michael Blackmore TREG


SH: Sean Heaver; CG: Clive Gardener; RM: Rob Murgatroyd; AG: Angela Garwood; DR: Dave Ramsay: SMT: Steve Tomalin; CC: Chris Crowley; CB: Chris Barber; TP: Trevor Pritchard; BD: Brian Davis; JK: Jeremy Knight; AB: Antoinette Bennett; DMJ: David Judson; PRD: Paul Deakin; JH: John Harvey; JL: John Lister; JC: John Cooper; KW: Kevin Wills; AF: Andy Farrant TREG: Pwll Du Tram Tunnel Research & Exploration Group;


© The Secret Bottletop Production Company Limited 18 March, 2001
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