Brian R. Andrews
Brian Andrews was born into the coal mining industry at Killingworth where his father worked at West Wallsend Extended Colliery in charge of the wagon repairs for Caledonian Collieries Limited and was responsible for keeping their fleet of some 2700 private coal hopper wagons in service.
When 18 months old, Brian contracted polio which affected his right leg. At an early age, he developed an interest in his father’s occupation as well as the coal mining industry. During childhood he accompanied his father on his many trips to the various collieries and railway sidings as well as Port Waratah and environs repairing crippled coal wagons. It was during this period that he started his life long collecting of railway, colliery and coal mining related material.
Brian’s interests later were in the mining of coal and envisaged joining the coal mining industry. He was offered a position as a Cadet Mine Surveyor at Northern Colliery (Rhondda) during 1965. Entry to the coal mining industry was denied for medical reasons and on leaving school, spent 3½ years as a Drafting Assistant with a Government Department in Newcastle as it was thought that entry to the coal mining industry was impossible. However, his desire to be part of the coal mining industry succeeded in September 1969 when he was appointed as a Draftsman with Coal & Allied Industries Ltd in their Administration Office at Hexham where he worked for nearly twenty years on various projects associated with the Company’s operations.
For most of his life, Brian has been associated with the coal mining industry and has researched and recorded much information on the operations of the Newcastle and District collieries and their railways as well as having a wealth of knowledge of the industry that he treasures so dearly.
Source: Dust jacket of Coal, railways and mines : the colliery railways of the Newcastle district and the early coal shipping facilities by Brian Robert Andrews. Redfern, N.S.W. : Iron Horse Press, 2009.OccupationDraftsmanOther OccupationPhotographerWriterPlace of ResidenceKillingworth, NSWPlace KillingworthThemeMining