Mine Management Professions in the Twentieth-Century Scottish Coal Mining Industry

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This book seeks to redress the exclusion of colliery managers and other mining professionals from the history of British, and particularly Scottish, coal industries. This is accomplished by examining these groups within the most crucial period of their ascendancy in the Scottish coal mining industry, 1930-1966. This work seeks to place such persons within their context and to examine their roles, statuses and behaviours through their relationships with employees and the execution of their functions, also examining their terms and conditions of employment, the outlook of their professional associations, and that of their union. Through all this, Dr. Perchard illustrates how this growing consciousness amongst managerial employees in the industry was accompanied by an intense public discussion, within the mining professions, over their future shape, principles and occupational standards.


“Dr. Andrew Perchard’s study of the Scottish coal mining management is a major contribution to not only our understanding of the Scottish industry but to coal mining history generally and to British business history. It is an important study, written well and saying much of interest to a wide audience. . . With this book, Dr. Perchard provides many insights into a major industry (deep coal mining) now gone from Scotland. It was an industry which had a major impact on Scottish, as well as British history. This is a book that is both informative and enjoyable to read.” – (from the Preface) Professor C.J. Wrigley, School of History, University of Nottingham

“This is the first full-length study of colliery managers and the professions allied to them . . . While there have been numerous studies of miners and their communities, no one has previously studied in comparable depth the people who for good or ill influence or controlled their working lives – the colliery managers.” – Dr. Quentin Outram, Senior Lecturer in Economics, Business School, University of Leeds

“Over the last twenty years there has been an explosion of interest in the lived experience of the working classes at home, work and leisure. We know much less about the careers, expertise and experience of supervisors and managers. The gap between our knowledge of the changing nature of manual work and of managerial work remains considerable. Nowhere is this gap greater than in the coalfields ... Dr. Andrew Perchard’s study of the development of the mine management professions in the twentieth century Scottish mining industry makes a valuable contribution to plugging this gap ... Dr. Perchard’s focus on the Scottish coalfield allows him to develop his fine-grained analysis and to make a vital contribution to our understanding of the coal industry, professionalisation, and the development of management systems in the twentieth century. This is a book that challenges our preconceptions of management as necessarily opposed to labour and allied to capital.” – Professor Alan McKinlay, School of Management, University of St. Andrews

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations
List of Abbreviations
Preface: Professor C.J. Wrigley
Foreword: Dr. A. Perchard
Glossary of Mining Terms
Part One: The Rise of the Mining Management Professions, 1930-1946
1 The ‘Black Jock’ Manager: Examining the Stereotype
2 ‘Colliers with a Collar on’
3 The Context of Control: Managers, Operations and Employers
Part Two: The Coming of Age of the Mine Management Professions, 1947-1966
4 Creating a Management Cadre: Mining Professionals and the NCB
5 The Management of Production
6 The Limits of Statutory Powers: Mine Management and Health and Safety
7 ‘The Same Team in Different Jerseys’? Managing Industrial Relations
8 The British Association of Colliery Management (BACAM)
Part Three: Conclusion
9 Conceptualising Mine Management Professionals

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