Foxfield Colliery, located at Godley Brook was the largest mine in Dilhorne, eventually the largest mine in the Cheadle Coalfield and in the end the last mine remaining in the coalfield, working for well over 80 years. However, its beginnings made its future far from uncertain. Originally, the landowner wouldn't let anyone prospect for coal on her land, and when finally a shaft was sunk in 1880 it was called "Manns Pit", instead of Foxfield. The pit did though have access to good coal, and the Dilhorne and Woodhead seams were mined. In a sign of the times, when the first Woodhead coal was mined all the colliery's staff were treated to a grand supper at the Wagon and Horses Public House.
The pit continued to grow and by 1893 Foxfield became the first mine in Cheadle to have its own rail connection to the national rail network as a three and a half mile branch line was opened to Blythe Bridge and connection to the NSR Stoke to Derby line-Known today as Foxfield Railway.
Foxfield was extensively modernised in the 1930s as all production from neighbouring Parkhall Colliery was moved to Foxfield. New coal screens were built and concrete headsticks were constructed. The seams mined were the Dilhorne, Four Foot and Woodhead.
Foxfield, along with the rest of the coal industry was nationalised in 1947, and the pit entered a period of expansion where by 1954 the workforce stood at 550 with 210,000 tonnes mined a year. However, this was the high water mark and gradually output and manpower decreased. In 1965 Foxfield Colliery was closed by the National Coal Board. The colliery had nearly exhausted its economic reserves, and as it was not fully mechanised, the board decided to transfer the majority of the miners to Florence Colliery in Longton where a fully mechanised face in the Moss Seam was prepared for the Foxfield men.
Today, We run demonstration freight trains out of Foxfield Colliery as part of our Gala Weekends in a bid to remember the days of yester-year. Our colliery site is regularly utilised for group visits and photographic events- These can be arranged on any day by prior appointment, Simply get in touch with our team via the 'contact us' page.