Test Borings

  The information on this page was extracted from Bavington Jones (1907)

"To geologists the operations already described were very instructive, but the strata in the various borings seemed to indicate that to the north-east of Dover the best sinking ground and the richest coal beds would be found.  Acting on the geological advice of Dr. Boyd Dawkins, Mr. Arthur Burr secured mining rights over a large area in that direction, and formed the Kent Coal Concessions Company to explore, with the intention, if coal seams were found, to divide and sub-let sections of the proved area to several colliery companies.  Mr. Arthur Burr, Managing Director of the Concessions Company, firmly believed that the area he had secured would be the cream of the Kent Coal Field, but as that belief was largely founded on theory, the first operations were tentative, but so well directed that the first trial was successful.

"Mr. Burr's plan in founding the Kent Coal Concessions Company was to thoroughly test by boring the whole area that he had secured.  The three boreholes, on which progress has been made, define a triangular area, midway between Dover and Canterbury, one point of the triangle being at the north side of Waldershare, one at Fredville (midway between Shepherdswell and Adisham), and one at Goodnestone.  The scheme also includes other borings not yet commenced."


"At the beginning of the year 1905, the first Concessions boring was commenced on the north-west side of Waldershare Park, midway between Coldred and Eythorne.  That boring was remarkably successful, entering the coal measures at a depth of 1,394 feet, and cutting through coal seams of thicknesses and at depths as follows:

1st seam - 1ft. 8in., at 1,818 feet.
2nd    ,,     - 3ft. 4in., at 1,881 feet.
3rd     ,,     - 4ft. 6in., at 1,908 feet.
4th     ,,     - 1ft. 4in., at 1,956 feet.
5th     ,,     - 5ft. 2in., at 2,372 feet.

making a total of 16 feet of good coal, and the strata also includes a bed of iron ore and several beds of valuable fireclay, from which some pretty articles of pottery have been made.  The boring is still in progress."


"A second boring was commenced at Fredville in May, 1905.  This reached the coal measures at 1,363 feet, and has pierced coal seams of good quality at depths and of thickness as follows:

1st seam - 1ft. 6in., at 1,424 feet.
2nd    ,,     - 1ft. 6in., at 1,446 feet.
3rd     ,,     - 4ft. 4in., at 1,505 feet.

The borings also found fireclays and iron ore as at Waldershare.  The important feature of this boring is that the seams are much nearer the surface than at Waldershare or any other seam of a like nature found in Kent.  This boring is still in progress."


"A third boring was started at Goodnestone in December, 1906, at the eastern corner of Goodnestone Park.  For nearly 1000ft. it has been carried down with a diameter if 18 inches, so that it is possible that it may be carried far enough to test the virgin seams of the lower coal measures as deep as 4000ft.  This boring is supposed to be near the coal measures, but has not yet entered them.  The chalk here is 100ft. thinner than at Waldershare.  This is the most northerly boring in Kent, and its geological disclosures cannot fail to be interesting."