Yorkshire industrial heritage attractions win international recognition
A major new Yorkshire industrial heritage route, which has won international recognition, is unveiled today.
The Elsecar Heritage Centre in Barnsley, the National Coal Mining Museum in Wakefield and Sheffield’s Kelham Island Museum are now officially recognised as Anchor Points on a new ‘European Route of Industrial Heritage’ entitled Makers, Miners and Money.
They’re among 15 other such routes across the continent, linking attractions in Germany, Spain and Poland.
To celebrate the newly announced heritage route, the Earl of Fitzwilliam’s 1913 Simplex car, will make the journey from its home at Kelham Island Museum back to the village of Elsecar which the Earl’s ancestors developed as an industrial hub with collieries, two ironworks, a canal and industrial railway.
The car will arrive at 12.30pm for a celebration to mark the recognition of the region’s proud industrial history. Actors dressed as Victorian coalminers and ironworkers will join guests, former miners and local children during the event.
Dr John Tanner, project development manager at Barnsley Council, welcomed the decision to recognise Yorkshire’s important contribution to European industrial heritage.
“Iron, coal and steel industries thrived from the 1600s to the 20th century and employed many thousands of men, women and children. Our ancestors helped fuel the expansion of the British Empire and the development of the modern world and this new heritage route is an excellent opportunity to remind ourselves just how pivotal their discoveries were.”
Kelham Island, Elsecar and the National Coal Mining Museum also join Wentworth Woodhouse, Wentworth Castle Gardens and seven other sites in the region that reflect the wealth, power and enterprise of a great industrial age of coal, iron and steel. The development of the route and the involvement of the partner sites has been co-ordinated by the East Peak Innovation Partnership.
Visitors exploring Yorkshire’s contribution to this European Route of Industrial Heritage will soon be able to discover more about the Newcomen Beam Engine at Elsecar.
The Newcomen Beam Engine is described as ‘the most important piece of industrial heritage in the world’ is currently being conserved and opened up to the public, thanks to support from the Heritage Lottery Fund and English Heritage.
NOTES TO EDITORS:
This news release has been prepared by Cream Consultancy, Barnsley Digital Media Centre, County Way, Barnsley, S70 2JW, on behalf of Barnsley Metropolitan Borough Council.
For more information, images and interview requests please contact Cream on 01226 720740. Alternative contact on the day is Dr John Tanner, Barnsley Council 07738 475394