Apprentices dig new mining museum role

From left, apprentices Aimee Swan, Cerys Dunant, and Kiera Hobson
From left, apprentices Aimee Swan, Cerys Dunant, and Kiera Hobson

A new team has started working at the Lady Victoria Colliery in Newtongrange, as the brand new Apprentice Guides programme kicks off.

The programme, which aims to aims to increase engagement by the community with their mining heritage, will see seven Apprentice Guides from primaries 6 and 7 at Gore Glen Primary School, deliver tours and safety lamp demonstrations to school groups across the county.

The Apprentices have been kitted out with blue boiler suits, just like the apprentices who once worked in the pit and have been trained in safety lamp demonstrating by Tom Young, a local ex-miner who now works as a tour guide at the museum.

Victoria Robb, Education Manager at National Mining Museum Scotland said: “We were thrilled when Mrs Marr, Head Teacher at Gore Glen Primary School, got in touch regarding this exciting idea.

“From then on NMMS and Gore Glen Primary have worked closely together to develop and plan the Apprentice Guide programme. We wanted all the pupils to be involved in the entire process. Therefore, the pupils chose their topic, their uniforms, the format of the tour and, as humour is very important to them all, even wrote several puns for the tour! During their first visit to the Mining Museum all of the pupils engaged with the importance of the Safety Lamp. It has been 201 years since the invention of the Safety Lamp and thousands of men’s lives have been saved because of it. We hope that the Apprentice Guide’s tour will pay tribute to the history and importance of the safety lamp.

Julie Unrau, Class Teacher at Gore Glen Primary School said: “We are extremely proud and excited to be part of the Apprentice Guide programme at National Mining Museum Scotland.

“This is a fantastic opportunity for the children of Gore Glen Primary School to work with our local community and schools. The staff and children are looking forward to this new opportunity and how it develops and progresses over the years.”