Free event


Discover the world of the free miners through powerful photography by Nick Hodgson, on display in the National Coal Mining Museum‘s café and entrance ramp area (The Hub).

The exhibition tells the story of some of the mines still working today in the Forest of Dean (Gloucestershire), by a small free mining community mining coal for sale mainly to the local population. They are very proud of their heritage and long link back to when free mining rights were granted by Edward III.

The photographs document both the landscapes of one of Britain’s oldest forests and the personalities and work of this unique community. The images were taken from 2019-22, and a book of these and other photographs is available in the museum bookshop.

Nick Hodgson is a documentary landscape photographer and a Fellow of the Royal Photographic Society (FRPS). He made this project because his maternal great-grandfather was a free miner.

Venue opening hours

Monday : Closed

Tuesday : Closed

Wednesday : 9:45 am - 5:00 pm

Thursday : 9:45 am - 5:00 pm

Friday : 9:45 am - 5:00 pm

Saturday : 9:45 am - 5:00 pm

Sunday : 9:45 am - 5:00 pm

    Access facilities

  • Accessible Car Parking
  • Accessible Toilet
  • Assistance Dogs Welcome
  • Baby Changing Facilities
  • Guide Dogs Welcome
  • Wheelchair Accessible

Venue Details

Find us at

New Road, Wakefield, WF4 4RH