About the Project
The CHIK project ended in 2007. Contact details for the Heritage Groups set up as part of the project legacy can be found on the contact page
In 2001 Dover District Council launched the Coalfields Heritage Initiative Kent (CHIK) project, led by Dover Museum and the White Cliffs Countryside Project. The project's aim was to record and preserve East Kent's mining heritage.
Coal was discovered near Dover in 1890, which led to a rush to exploit the mineral. Many coal mines were started, only to fail, and just four collieries survived into the twentieth century: Snowdown, Tilmanstone, Betteshanger and Chislet.
Most of the workers for these mines came from traditional coal areas such as south Wales, the Midlands and the North East and to house them new villages were built, including Aylesham, Elvington, Hersden and Mill Hill in Deal. The last colliery, Betteshanger, closed in 1989.
If the on-going regeneration of the coalfield and the improvements to the old mining communities are successful, there will soon be almost no indication that there ever was a coal industry in Kent.
Ariel view of Betteshanger 1930
Ariel view of Betteshanger site nearly cleared
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Monday to Saturday 9.30am-5pm
Sunday (April-Sept) 10am-3pm
Closed Sundays October to March
Closed December 25th, 26th and 1st January