All mines have a lifespan which runs for as long as there is coal to be mined economically and the demand exists.
There are strict guidelines and legislation which will be adhered to as and when the mine reaches the end of its viable lifespan. Depending on the site, some mines can be used for other purposes – for example The Eden Project, a visitor attraction in Cornwall, is a disused clay mine – whilst others are returned to their pre-mining use after closure. The legislation also includes preparing the workforce for moving onto new employment as and when necessary.
The Woodhouse Colliery site including the Rail Loading Facility will be fully protected by a remediation bond as per a specific condition of the Section 106 Agreement. The Section 106 is a legal agreement between Cumbria County Council, WCM and other landowners whose land has a vested interest as part of the project. The remediation bond protects the council and landowners giving them reassurance that when the mine closes there is money put aside to restore the land to its original status.