It is a family affair at surface mine

Work at a Northumberland surface mine has become a real family affair with no fewer than six sets of fathers and sons on site.

Monday, 11th April 2016, 7:50 am
Rob and Martin Draycott, Terry and Steven Whittle, Andy and Andy Wilson, Chris and Liam Quinn, Paul and Liam Showler, and Andy and Scott Moore. Picture by Keith Taylor.

Banks Mining has around 150 people working at its Shotton surface mine near Cramlington, and it is thought this is the first time the company has had so many fathers and sons working on one of their sites.

Among the co-working dads and lads are Andy and Scott Moore, from Widdrington village.

Having previously worked at Banks Mining’s Delhi site on the Blagdon Estate, Andy came back to Banks five years ago to work as a plant operative at Shotton.

Scott, 23, followed his father to Shotton in 2013, working as a dump truck driver.

Andy said: “I’ve worked in surface mining for the last 30 years, and when Scott was looking for a new job, I actively encouraged him to apply to work here, and we enjoy having each other around.

“We do a skilled job that’s well paid and Banks has always been a good firm to work for.

“My younger son will be leaving school in the near future, and I’m hoping that he’ll be able to join Scott and me into the industry.”

Other dads and lads working at the site are Rob and Martin Draycott; Terry and Steven Whittle; Andy and Andy Wilson; Chris and Liam Quinn; and Paul and Liam Showler.

Jeannie Kielty, development relations coordinator at The Banks Group, said: “We’ve had many examples over the years of sons following their fathers into work at our surface mines, and the fact that so many young people choose to do this is testament to the employment, training and skills development opportunities we provide, as well as to what their fathers think of Banks as an employer. ”

Operations at Shotton started in 2008 and will run until 2019, when full resotration of the site is scheduled to have been completed.

For more on the Shotton surface mine visit