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Last Updated: Tuesday, 27 February 2007, 11:33 GMT
Jobs safeguarded as coal pit sold
Coal mine (generic)
Before the sale UK Coal owned five deep-cast mines across the UK
Nearly 500 jobs have been safeguarded after one of the UK's last remaining deep coal mines was sold.

Maltby Colliery, near Rotherham, South Yorkshire, has been sold by UK Coal to one of its biggest customers, Hargreaves Services, for 21.5m.

The new owner said all 470 workers at the pit, which dates back to 1907, would keep their jobs.

Hargreaves owns the Monckton Coke and Chemical Company which consumes 25% of the coking coal produced at Maltby.

The firm is also the largest importer of coal in the UK.

As part of the sale, Hargreaves signed a new three-year contract with the UK's biggest coal-fired energy plant, Drax Power Station in North Yorkshire.

Deep mines

Maltby Colliery made losses of 18.2m last year.

Before the sale, UK Coal owned five deep mines employing about 4,000 people in the north of England and the Midlands.

Hargreaves has recruited Allan Houghton, a former British Coal executive, to run Maltby's operations.

The company's chief executive Gordon Banham said: "The acquisition will safeguard the jobs of approaching 500 employees who work there and I am delighted to take Maltby forward as part of the enlarged Hargreaves group."

Coal producer returns to profit
06 Sep 06 |  England

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