Pit village

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Pitfield Street sign, Pit Village, Beamish Museum

A pit village is a term used in parts of the UK for the village serving a deep coal mine.

In these villages many of the workers lived in houses that were provided by the colliery. Many villages have experienced depopulation after colliery closures in the 1980s forced people to move to other towns and cities where there are jobs for them to make a living. This has been more prevalent in remote areas; by contrast some pit villages that border cities, in particularly Leeds and Newcastle upon Tyne, have experienced population growth after colliery closures.[citation needed]

In popular culture[edit]

The 1939 film The Stars Look Down, based on the 1935 novel of the same name by A. J. Cronin and directed by Carol Reed, is set in the fictitious pit village of Sleescale. The movie was partly shot on location at St Helens Siddick Colliery at Workington in Cumberland.

How Green Was My Valley and the subsequent film of the same name were based on a fictional pit village of the South Wales Valleys, as was The Proud Valley starring Paul Robeson.

Billy Elliot is set in the fictitious pit village of Everington during the miners' strike of 1984-1985. It was shot on location in Easington Colliery which went through the events of 1985.

Brassed Off was set in the fictional "Grimley", which was only a thin veil for Grimethorpe.

The depopulation of Fitzwilliam, West Yorkshire which saw around a third of its housing left unoccupied, was brought into culture by a song by Chumbawamba and David Peace's novel Nineteen Seventy Four.