Northern France Tourism : official website

Aerial view of the Mining History Centre in Lewarde

Three centuries of history

The Mining History Centre opened in 1984 on the pit head of the former Delloye pit, on site of 8 hectares. Closed in 1971 because it was no longer profitable, the management of the state-owned Houillères du Nord et du Pas-de-Calais decided to create a memorial site to recount the life and culture of 3 centuries of mining activity. Material and documents flooded in from the other pits as they closed one by one. The last pit closed on 21st December 1990. Little by little, the site become an industrial and human memorial. The site includes a mine museum, a documentary resource centre, and a scientific culture centre for energy which explains the stakes for the mining activity, and all the information about energy sources for today and the future.

The Mining History Centre lit up during the Night of Museums
  • The Mining History Centre lit up during the Night of Museums
  • © E Watteau-CHM

France’s largest mining museum

Begin your adventure by passing through the “salle des pendus”, where the miners hung their clothes, by the lamp room, by the reconstituted administrative offices, then finish by descending into the heart of the galleries for a one hour guided visit through the particular universe below. Discover the evolution of the techniques and working conditions at the bottom of the mine, accompanied by the whirring of the coal extraction machinery. Then learn more about the mining world with 7 themed exhibitions such as “The three ages of the mine” or scientific and historical exhibitions.

Guided visit of the galleries at the bottom of the mine
  • Guided visit of the galleries at the bottom of the mine
  • © E. Watteau
To go a step further
Le Briquet … ?

Did you know? “Le Briquet” takes its name from the snack the miner’s took to the bottom of the mine every day. Today it is the name of the museum’s restaurant.

Meet a former miner who shares his experiences

Former miners share memories of their daily life which lasted their whole lives. Genuine, educational, and particularly moving.