The Metropolitan Colliery, Helensburgh 1895
In 1895 there were twelve collieries at work in the Illawarra district that raised 681,782 tons of coal, valued at £174,780, and the number of men employed in and about the collieries was 1,477, and one colliery (Metropolitan) in the southern district, at Helensburgh, adjacent to the Illawarra and South Coast Railway, 27 miles from the Metropolis and 29 miles from Darling Harbour, Sydney, that raised 228,341 tons of coal, valued at £64,255, and employed 403 men in and about the mine. The coal seam worked at these twelve collieries is the uppermost one or No. 1 of the upper coal measures. It is a semi-bituminous coal used to steam, smelting, household, blacksmith, and coking purposes, and varies from 10 feet to 4 feet in thickness. With the exception of the Metropolitan and South Clifton Collieries, the coal is principally wrought from adits driven into the seam in the high ranges fronting the Pacific Ocean at heights of from 20 to 750 feet. The coal seam is very free from faults, and lies almost horizontal.
The cost of hewing the coal is now 2s. per ton, and the selling price at the jetties and Wollongong Harbour is supposed to be about 6s. per ton.
The Metropolitan Coal Company have the Government Railway contract for supply of coal to southern district railway depôts and portion of Penrith railway requirements at 5s. 4d. per ton, and for Metropolitan District at 5s. 10d.
Provenance: “New South Wales: the mother colony of the Australias“. Frank Hutchinson, Edited by F. Hutchinson.
Author: Frank Hutchinson
Date of Publication: 1896
Publisher: C. Potter
Place of Publishing: Sydney
Copyright status: Out of copyright
Courtesy: The British Library