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Swansea University Library
and Information Services
South Wales Coalfield Collection (SWCC)
Richard Burton Archives and
South Wales Miners' Library

Archive; Library
Library and Information Services Swansea University Singleton Park
Swansea SA2 8PP
United Kingdom
Elisabeth Bennett, Archivist
+44 (0)1792 295021
44 (0)1792 295821
Fax: ---

The SWCC has its origins in the 1970s, when the Departments of History and Economic History at Swanswa University hosted two projects funded by the Social Science Research Council to preserve written and oral evidence of coal miners and coal mining in the region at a time when the industry had started to decline and these records were in danger of being lost. Substantial deposits have been made to create a unique collection of international significance. The SWCC contains a variety of medica. Over 700 linear metres of documents are held, which include books, periodicals, pamphlets and newspaper cuttings as well as records of the South Wales Miners' Federation and the National Union of Mineworkers (South Wales Area), miners' lodges and institutes, and the personal papers of miners. There are also more than 4,000 photographs, 600 hours of oral history interviews, 200 hours of video footage, over 100 posters, and 42 trade union banners. The Collection is essentially a reference facility, with provision for limited photocopying where appropriate. For manuscript material and photographs, please contact the South Wales Coalfield Archive at +44 (0)1792 295021. For printed material, banners and audio-visual collections, please contact the South Wales Miner's Library at +44 (0)1792 518603


In 2005 the Collection received a Research Resources in Medical History Award from the Wellcome Trust. As a result, its medical holdings - previously largely hidden are searchable on the Coalfield Web Materials site ( The SWCC is strong on occupational health, notably mining-specific diseases, other work-related illness and disability, accidents, and safety and welfare. In addition, there are rich holdings that relate to the health of the community, in particular community disease, personal illness and disability, housing and public sanitation, maternal and child health, food and nutrition, healthcare personnel, medical institutions, and medical insurance and medical aid societies.

Subject Strengths:
History of Medicine; History of Preventive or Occupational Medicine; History of Public Health; Materia Medica
Last Updated:
31 May 2019