The Hamilton Herald reported on 10th August 1894 of a new colliery in Blantyre. The Priory Colliery (Bairds number 3). Reported as,
“This new colliery now being sunk by the Messrs Bairds’ to the north of Craigknowe (Farm) is being pushed rapidly forward. Last Week the new siding was begun, when Messrs D.K. & H Symington, contractors, Coatbridge, had a squad of 30 men set to the cutting of it. The sinking of the shafts, by Messrs Addie Brothers, is also well on, being down 90 fathoms. The men numbering 60, are worked in three shifts per day, so that the engines are constantly kept going. The work is being steadily pushed forward under the manager, Mr James Thom, of Bothwell.”
This was quite common for the colliery owners. Once a shaft was started (by pilot drillers), it was worked on usually round the clock until the depth was reached. It is difficult to imagine how they did this without modern technology, the dangers that must have existed and the sheer effort.
Priory Colliery is pictured here in this uncommon 1936 photo, the newspaper report transcribed by Wilma Bolton.