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By Geoff Coyle

Britain's mining and quarrying industries date again to the Stone Age flint mines of 2500 BC and nonetheless exist. In that interval of greater than 4,000 years the country's miners have produced large quantities of copper, tin, lead, zinc, iron, loads of silver and a few gold, and smaller quantities of virtually any other steel from arsenic to uranium.

The metals have been the root of our business wealth and straightforwardness of dwelling yet they have been pushed by means of King Coal, which at its height hired 1000000 males and produced greater than two hundred million plenty a 12 months. Granite from Scotland, limestone from Southern England, sandstone and Welsh slate supplied our houses, factories, roads and harbours. None of this might were completed with out the genius of engineers reminiscent of James Watt, and the discovery of robust steam engines and plenty of different technical advances. Our luck during this cornucopia of wealth derives from the Island's remarkable geological background: what's now Southern England was at the Antarctic Circle.

Professor Geoff Coyle, a former mining engineer and from a mining kin himself, sketches the tale of ways mining has formed Britain. The account is large ranging, related to tales of the mineral wealth of england and its exploitation, from easy quarrying to the appearance of mass construction. There are stories of the miners' lives and the good mining households, in addition to debts of the miner's paintings, the stipulations within the mines, and mining failures. Coyle weaves his own adventure and keenness into the tale, illuminating the economic background, geology, and know-how. each one bankruptcy highlights one of many major mining fields and explores the mineral in query, its exploitation, and the way technological adjustments affected the mining strategies used.

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