Saturday, 1 August 2015


                                                                                                                                                                          Miners,                                        detail from a painting by John Bampfield

I've never worked in a mine.  I can only imagine what it might be like to work underground in dark hazardous conditions on a daily basis.  I think that you'd need to be tough to survive this kind of work.

I've tried to show this in my painting.

Men, and women, have toiled over centuries to improve the lot of ordinary people. For many of us it's better now than it's ever been.  Yet.......we seem to demand more and more.

Some people are working long hours doing jobs that, though not as physically hard as mining, still call for emotional and psychological stamina beyond what was asked for in previous decades.

Many may not be actually going underground all day, hacking away at black rock, crawling along tunnels on hands and knees, breathing damp air and dirt, but at the end of their working day, some will surely feel that they have been!

Fear of losing employment and being unable to find work, keeps many workers on the tread mill, negotiating psychological hazards on a daily basis, and living in a state of constant fear and anxiety.

This perhaps can be as damaging to health as breathing in coal dust.