A Rich Seam

In 2016, Doncaster Council commissioned internationally renowned sculptor, Laurence Edwards, to design a sculpture to commemorate Doncaster’s rich mining heritage. 

The sculpture is located in Doncaster Town Centre on Printing Office Street. Plans to implement the sculpture were delayed due to Covid-19, however new plans were developed to see the sculpture arrive in Doncaster early 2021.  

In 2018, a Spacehive crowdfunding campaign was backed by individuals, community groups, businesses and the Mayor Ros Jones, raising over £130,000 to enable the making of the ‘A Rich Seam’ mining sculpture.

The design of the sculpture was shaped and evolved as the artist met with local miners and their families at events held in the community. This was followed by a series of live portrait sessions, hosted by Doncaster College, to capture the faces and stories of local miners and their families. The artist expanded this process to include more local people sharing Doncaster mining stories in the finished piece.   

The finished design will see a 6ft bronze miner standing between two pieces of rock, symbolising the miner travelling up the mine shaft after a shift. Like a seam of coal, the rock has a seam of 39 bronze portraits of local miners, their family members, a pit nurse, and a mines rescue worker. The miner is listening to the rich seam sharing laughter, pride and tears as they share their mining memories; which visitors will be able to access via online videos.