The UK's National Mining Memorabilia Association was formed in 1996 by a group of colliery check and mining badge collectors. Since its conception the Association's membership has grown from an initial 20 to a nominal 80 to 100 individuals, both men and women. The membership is drawn from all age groups and all walks of life although a large percentage are ex-colliers or are still employed in Britain's mining and quarrying industry.
Presently the membership's interests are biased towards coal mining history and related memorabilia. However, the Association is keen to include and promote the interests of those researching and collecting items associated with the fields of metalliferous ore and industrial minerals mining.
NMMA Members on a recent Fieldtrip to Tower Colliery & The Valleys
Still the most popular research and collection theme within the Association remains colliery checks with badges and flame safety lamps running as the next popular favourites. However, since the Association's formation an increasing number of members have joined with much wider interests. These include local colliery history enthusiasts plus collectors and researchers of mining carbide and electric safety lamps, pit pony items, blasting and explosive related equipment, enamelled shaft bell signs, paper ephemera and mining company share certificates, postcards and even items as obscure as colliery manufactured house bricks bearing the names of the pits or coal companies who made them. The list of items collected is becoming ever larger and more diverse!
The Association produces a quarterly newsletter or flyer containing a variety of articles written by members which reflects their wide range of collecting and research interests. A regular updated membership list is also published giving each member's contact details (if agreed) plus details of their various interests. In addition to the newsletter the Association organizes at least four field meetings a year at which members can discuss their common interests, swop items of memorabilia from their collections, take part in quizzes plus get the chance to visit museums and working mines. Some of the Association's regular meeting places include the National Coal Mining Museum for England (Caphouse Colliery) near Wakefield, Tower Colliery in South Wales, Erewash Museum near Ilkeston plus other venues at Elsecar and Pinxton.