Results 1 to 6 of 6

Thread: Coal mine, Anderlues, Belgium, November 2019

  1. #1
    Join Date
    January 2013
    Location
    People's Republic of South Yorkshire.
    Posts
    4,946
    Thanked
    9846

    Default Coal mine, Anderlues, Belgium, November 2019


    1. The History
    Anderlues is a Walloon municipality located in the Belgian province of Hainaut. Coal extraction dates back to 1858 when the company Anderlues was created. In 1894 the Société Anonyme des Houillères d'Anderlues was formed in 1894 through the merger with some local coal mines and the first coke factory established in 1904. It had an annual capacity of 90,000 tons of “foundry coke” along with a tar recovery plant and ammonium sulphate plant. It was built near the central washhouse and a power plant was added later. In 1908 two more coke oven batteries were added, each one with 26 Coppée furnaces and able to produce 74,000 tons. Further refinements in the 1920’s included the installation of a benzene distillation plant and the complete refurbishment of the ovens in 1928.

    Archive picture when the plant was still working;

    Andalues old 1 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    During the Second World War the company proceeded to update its coal mining and treatment facilities. As result, the plant was employing approximately 2,000 people with about a quarter of the work force at the coke plant. By 1956 there were 35 furnaces in service and renovation took place between 1956 and 1958. Both the old batteries B1 and B2 were provided with 10 Coppée/CEC furnaces and a third battery (B3) of 18 Coppée ovens was created. Despite those investments coke production remained a secondary. However, the company’s coal mines were gradually closed down (five in 1943 and three in 1952) and in 1969 coal mining was suspended and coal imported from Spain and North America.

    In 1971 the company changed its name into Société Anonyme des Cokeries et Houillères d'Anderlues (shorten in Cokeries d'Anderlues). The production was extended to metallurgical coke (or “Cokan”) for blast furnaces and the bi-products such as benzene and gas were sold to other companies. In 1988 battery B3 was renovated giving it a capacity of 120,000 tonne of coke per annum (83% foundry and 17% metallurgical). With no further improvements in the 1990s the plant reached the new millennium run-down and on a heavily polluted site.

    Aerial picture shortly after the pant closed:

    Andalues old 3 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    In 1999 the company’s regional permit to operate was denied by the Ministry of the Walloon Region. The heavy costs of putting this right plus the increasing competition from emerging countries forced the company to close down the coking plant indefinitely in November 2002 and the loss of 113 jobs. The longest running coke plant in Belgium was then sold in 2004 to a private owner who demolished a number of buildings on the site including the laundry, furnace machines, engines, metal parts of the furnaces and gas treatment tanks. Since then, the site has remained abandoned, awaiting the demolition of the remaining structures.

    2. The Explore
    No.4 of five sites visited on my first day in Belgium. This was by far the biggest of the places I looked around. Again, access was ridiculously easy. The site is pretty overgrown and not as easy to get around as you think. The buildings have been stripped and are pretty much shells, but the external views mean it still merits a visit. It was here that I saw the only other people all day – a couple of local explorers who were having a look round and had their own sound system!

    3. The Pictures

    The first thing of interest you come to is this:

    img4177 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    img4178 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    Anderlues 15 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    The colliery winding gear looks closer than it is:

    img4180 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    img4185 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    On to the main plant:

    Anderlues 14 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    The coking tower still dominates the site:

    img4175 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    img4119 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    img4134 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    img4146 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    Anderlues 06 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    img4135 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    img4121 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    Former gasometer:

    img4137 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    Anderlues 07 by HughieDW, on Flickr



    The electrical workshop:

    img4159 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    img4156 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    Anderlues 05 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    Old power station building:

    img4142 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    img4149 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    Anderlues 11 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    img4145 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    img4144 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    Anderlues 08 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    Anderlues 10 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    Anderlues 09 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    View over to the gasometer:

    img4153 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    Floor detail:

    img4143 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    Offices and cloakrooms:

    img4174 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    Anderlues 13 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    img4173 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    Anderlues 12 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    img4162 by HughieDW, on Flickr

  2. Thanks given by: Hugh Jorgan, KJurbex, krela, Mearing, psykie, RedX_unleashed, Romford Reject, Sabtr
  3.  
     
  4. #2
    Join Date
    May 2017
    Location
    Surrey
    Posts
    166
    Thanked
    133

    Default


    Very nice shots.

    i'm still trying to work out exactly what that sign is trying to display. As my rusty french goes, i'm getting this much:

    Work accidents

    We have worked [insert work hours here i assume]

    The record to beat is [insert here]

    so it appears as if they are trying to beat the number of hours worked without an accident. That seems so strange, almost like they're expecting one to happen! Unless the "work accidents" at the top is intended for something else - and is out of context.

    Anyway, great report nonetheless!

  5. Thanks given by: HughieD
  6. #3
    Join Date
    January 2013
    Location
    People's Republic of South Yorkshire.
    Posts
    4,946
    Thanked
    9846

    Default


    Quote Originally Posted by RedX_unleashed View Post
    Very nice shots.

    i'm still trying to work out exactly what that sign is trying to display. As my rusty french goes, i'm getting this much:

    Work accidents

    We have worked [insert work hours here i assume]

    The record to beat is [insert here]

    so it appears as if they are trying to beat the number of hours worked without an accident. That seems so strange, almost like they're expecting one to happen! Unless the "work accidents" at the top is intended for something else - and is out of context.

    Anyway, great report nonetheless!
    Think I concur with that. Cheers mate.

  7. #4
    Join Date
    April 2008
    Location
    Teesside
    Posts
    1,478
    Thanked
    233

    Default


    Another interesting site. Very stripped out as you say but still showing one or two nice touches - I didn't expect to see the sides of coke ovens for example.
    For an industrial site that survived two major wars I think it's done well!
    Is the head frame and mine coming in another thread?

  8. Thanks given by: HughieD
  9. #5
    Join Date
    June 2014
    Posts
    1,284
    Thanked
    2226

    Default


    I do love that one, nicely done!
    What the hell am I doing, I mean really at my age!

  10. Thanks given by: HughieD
  11. #6
    Join Date
    February 2008
    Location
    Rawdon Leeds
    Age
    76
    Posts
    1,827
    Thanked
    1582

    Default


    Quote Originally Posted by RedX_unleashed View Post
    it appears as if they are trying to beat the number of hours worked without an accident. That seems so strange, almost like they're expecting one to happen!!
    A very common ploy in that era on dangerous work sites. These places were very accident prone and accidents were expected; the 'lets beat' the previous best accident free period did tend to work on the subconscious of the workers. However it was only the various H&S Regulations adopted in each country that really made a lasting difference to the workplace.

Similar Threads

  1. Coal mine du Gouffre, Charleroi, Belgium, April 2018
    By HughieD in forum Overseas Sites
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: 23rd Jun 18, 19:46
  2. Hasard Cheratte Coal Mine, Belgium, Aug 2010
    By rigsby in forum Overseas Sites
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: 19th Aug 10, 17:19
  3. The Neo-Gothic coal mine (Belgium)
    By ~Slyv~ in forum Overseas Sites
    Replies: 13
    Last Post: 9th May 09, 01:26
  4. Hasard Cheratte Coal Mine - Belgium
    By saul_son in forum Overseas Sites
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 1st Mar 09, 17:36
  5. Cokerie Anderlues, Belgium
    By bartje in forum Overseas Sites
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 4th Nov 08, 09:37

About us
DerelictPlaces is a forum for people with an interest in the history and documentation of disused, derelict and abandoned buildings to come together and share their experiences, photography and historical findings. Our military, industrial and historical heritage is fast disappearing under the pressure of regeneration, the need for new housing, and often through simple neglect; Our aim is to document these places before they disappear entirely.
Follow us