Nord-Pas de Calais Mining Basin
On August 31, 2015
Remarkable as a landscape shaped over three centuries of coal extraction from the 1700s to the 1900s, the site consists of 109 separate components over 120,000 ha. It features mining pits (the oldest of which dates from 1850) and lift infrastructure, slag heaps (some of which cover 90 ha and exceed 140 m in height), coal transport infrastructure, railway stations, workers’ estates and mining villages including social habitat, schools, religious buildings, health and community facilities, company premises, owners and managers’ houses, town halls and more.

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The Nord-Pas de Calais Mining Basin corresponds to the French part of the northwest European coal seam. On a broad open plain, it extends some 120 km, through the two administrative departments of Nord and Pas-de-Calais. It presents a remarkable cultural landscape in terms of its continuity and homogeneity. It provides an important and well preserved example of coal mining and its associated urban planning throughout the two centuries of intensive coal extraction from the end of the 18th century to the last quarter of the 20th century, through industrial methods involving a great many workers.