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Monument record MDR5229 - Coke ovens, north of Summerley House, Dronfield and Unstone

Type and Period (5)

  • (Former Type) (Victorian to Early 20th Century - 1871 AD? to 1921 AD?)
  • (Victorian - 1869 AD to 1884 AD)
  • (Victorian to Unknown - 1871 AD)
  • (Victorian - 1869 AD to 1884 AD)
  • (Second World War to Late 20th Century - 1940 AD? to 1980 AD?)

Protected Status/Designation

Full Description

(Centred SK 368 781) Mine (disused) (NAT) SK 368 781. A tall brick-built engine house in reasonable condition. SK 369 782. A bank of 19th century 2 x 24 coke ovens now largely obscured by vegetation. SK 369 781. A bank of coke ovens with stone portals and voussoirs and brick-vaulted chambers. In variable condition following recent use as pig-sties. Scheduled. (see illustration card) A large group of 19th century beehive coke ovens associated with Summerley Colliery, 1/2 mile east of Dronfield. (1-4) SK 369781 Dronfield, Coke Ovens. 100m by 10mm (118yds by 31ft). Large group of coke ovens, last used in 1921, associated with Summerley Colliery which began work in 1871. There are 48 ovens, arranged in 2 banks of 24, back to back, with staircases on both sides at regular intervals giving access to the top of the oven bank at regular intervals. The ovens are brick lined, but have stone entry arches, with rubble stone forming the body of the bank. At each side of the group is a platform, presumably to allow wagons to load up with coke and discharge the coal to be processed. Some of the ovens have been breached but many are intact. The group constitutes the finest set of coke ovens, a once prominent feature in the coalfield areas, remaining in the country. The ovens were 11. 5 feet diameter by 7 feet high at the apex. (5) Summerley Coke Ovens. Range of 48 coke ovens to the east of the line of the former Midland Railway Unstone loop, much of which is followed by a public footpath. The main structure of the range is of stone, with the ovens, arches, steps, and chimneys of brick. All space surrounding the ovens within the structure is filled with stone and brick rubble. The ovens are arranged in groups of twelve, six to each side of a chimney. They were serviced directly by sidings from the loop line. Like the railway, they date from the early 1870s and continued in use until 1921. The ovens are currently (2000) in very poor condition and difficult to access. Means are being sought to consolidate them and assure their survival. For a full account of the ovens see Derbyshire Archaeological Journal CIX (1989), 'Summerley Coke Ovens' by Kay Battye, Ian Mitchell and Don Newing, pp180-193. (8) The coke ovens at Summerley Colliery are the best surviving examples of a remarkable concentration of several hundred beehive ovens which existed within a two-mile radius of Unstone in the late 19th century. The six inch Ordnance Survey maps of 1883 and 1889 show 12 coke oven sites adjacent to collieries; remains survive on three of these, but only Summerley Colliery range remains intact. Summerley Colliery opened in 1869, and closed in 1884. The engine house carried an 1871 datestone; it survived long after the other colliery buildings on the site had disappeared but was not included in the protected area when the coke ovens were listed as a scheduled monument and was demolished in 1989. The coke ovens were completed by 1876, and stand on a raised platform which was originally served by railway tracks on both sides. The trackbed on the north-east side remains, but the trackbed on the southwest side has recently (c.1989) been infilled to the level of the platform by waste tipping. (9)

Sources/Archives (10)

  • <1> Map: Ordnance Survey (OS). 1968. 6".
  • <2> Bibliographic reference: CBA Panel on Indust Mons - Derby Oct 1975 10.
  • <3> Bibliographic reference: DOE (IAM) AMs Eng Record Form 6.9.78.
  • <4> Bibliographic reference: Pevsner, N. 1979. The Buildings of England: Derbyshire. 2nd ed., revised. p201.
  • <5> Index: NDAT. 0787. 0787.
  • <6b> Scheduling record: English Heritage. 1998. Scheduling Notification. 30947. 265. Cat. No.:265.
  • <6a> Bibliographic reference: EH Scheduling Notification:12/4/79. 265.
  • <7> Index: Council for British Archaeology (CBA). CBA Industrial Archaeology Report Card. Coke ovens, Dronfield.
  • <8> Bibliographic reference: Fowkes, D. 2000. Derbyshire Industrial Archaeology. Part V. North East Derbyshire. P.39.
  • <9> Article in serial: Battye, K, Doncaster, R, Mitchell, I & Newing, D. 1989. 'Summerley Colliery Coke Ovens', Derbyshire Archaeological Journal. Volume 109.



Grid reference Centred SK 36916 78122 (147m by 161m)

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Events/Activities (2)

  • EDR1770
  • EDR1624

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Record last edited

Sep 25 2017 4:37PM

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