Photo Ref: 5348
To commemorate the 1988 bicentennary of white settlement in Australia, Lake Macquarie City Council invested a grant from the Australian Bicentennial Authority into a project reflecting the early days of settlement in Lake Macquarie. The sites were selected in keeping with Lake Macquarie City Council's Coat of Arms, highlighting the close association with the mining, timber and fishing industries to the area along with recognition of the lake's discoverers and early settlers.
This plaque identifies and commemorates the site of the Dudley Colliery, where in 1898 fifteen miners were killed in an explosion. Arthur Durham, Archibald Mowbray, Cyrus Price, William Rudge, Thomas Young, George Hindmarsh, William Humphreys,Thomas Hetherington, Thomas Jones, James McDougall, Thomas Haddon, Thomas Dorrity, John Benson, George Cook, and Thomas Green went down the pit on Monday 21st March 1898 at 7:15am on their regular shift. Just over two hours later a great explosion rocked the suburb and surrounding areas. Sadly no man survived, with the recovery of the bodies taking more than two weeks to complete.The official inquiries and inquests found there to be an accumulation of a huge volume of gas in the pit to be the major cause of the disaster. The only comfort for the townsfolk at this time was that there were not more men killed as only the shift men and some officials were underground.