Film ID: YFA 2303 Video of YFA_2303 Outcrop at Wentworth 1943 OUTCROP AT WENTWORTH 1943 1943 Visitor TabsDescription This is a film made by Chapeltown dentist Willie Thorne which documents Wentworth outcrop coal mine near Sheffield whose coal would have been utilised by many of the different industries in the local area. The opening shot of this film shows a muddy track in the middle of a large earthy field. The camera pans across the field to reveal a large spire sticking out of a group of trees, and superimposed are the words 'Barrow farm open cast site Wentworth 1943'. A man then stands in an excavated hole next to a large wall of soil, and the 'Area 15 acres output 1000 tons daily' is superimposed over the top. A man then sits at the controls of a large mechanical digger, which scoops up earth and rubble, before dumping it into a truck. Title - One skip holds 25 cwts of coal. This sequence shows further shots of the mechanical digger excavating earth. The filmmaker then captures various shots of the site and the area surrounding it. A bulldozer without its scoop pulls a skip across the site, which collects the earth. Title - They move between 9 & 16 tons in one load. The opening shots in this sequence show two bulldozers dragging their skips across the site. Then the filmmaker cuts to a man who, judging by his expensive clothing, is not a workman. The skips dump their contents on to marked out path and this is followed by two men who hack away at the soil with a pick axe. The collected earth is then driven away by a large convoy of trucks. The final shots in this sequence shows workmen digging and bulldozers which are used to move the soil. A panoramic view shows a small village and worksite set amongst hilly landscape. Great mounds of rubble are captured by the filmmaker, before a cut is made to show a workman walking down a stretch of semi-finished road. More panoramic views show the surrounding landscape, and following this, a sequence ensues that shows the mechanisms of a large industrial crane. More shots of the work site follow, and this is punctuated by a car which drives across the cleared paths. The final shot in this film shows large mounds of excavated earth. Context Much has been made of Manny Shinwell ordering the park around the Wentworth House to be dug up for open cast mining after the war, but here we see the land around the estate already being open cast mined in 1943. That much needed farm land was turned over for coal excavation shows the priorities of wartime production. This film was one of a dozen made during the war by Chapeltown dentist and keen filmmaker Willie Thorne. The Wentworth Estate had already earned a fortune for its owners, the Fitzwilliams, mainly due to the coal deposits underground. The open cast excavation of coal in the fields around Wentworth began in 1942. Wentworth House – twice as wide as Buckingham Palace, and with more than 1,000 windows and 365 rooms – was requisitioned for the war to train army motorcycle riders. It became a battle ground itself when the Labour Government forced open cast mining right next to it after the war, in opposition to the National Trust, mining engineers from the University of Sheffield, and the Yorkshire president of the NUM.