This film is part of Free

Ocean Collieries Recreational Union

The Ocean Coal Company plays its part in the “war against dirt” by providing pithead baths. Its new sports facilities and playgrounds offer healthy fun for all the community.

Promotional 1934 9 mins Silent

From the collection of:

Logo for National Screen and Sound Archive of Wales


Incomplete film, with inter-titles, detailing government-driven improvements to miners' working conditions and leisure amenities as provided both for them and their families by the Ocean Coal Company. There are the pithead baths (which include a First Aid room and clean clothes lockers), drinking water fountains, tennis courts, bowling greens and playgrounds. Boot cleaning and boot greasing machines are referred to but there are no shots of either, unfortunately.

The Miners' Welfare Fund was established by a 1927 parliamentary act and forced coal companies to provide baths and other welfare amenities by imposing a compulsory levy on the sale price of coal. The previous voluntary system of provision had failed to provide any real betterment in miners' conditions. The Ocean Coal Company - operating in south Wales - opened its seventh pithead bath installation in November 1933. Several others were also under construction at that time. This film shows Ocean collieries in the Treorchy area, the pithead baths shown (exterior shots) being those at Nine Mile Point Colliery, Cwmfelinfach.