Soby Lignite Museum

The lignite mines at Soby, 15 km south of the city of Herning contributed to the supply of energy in Denmark for 30 years from 1940, and were especially important during the wartime years of occupation. At their peak the workings employed some five thousand men, and in most years more than 3,500 were employed. Extraction ceased in 1970 leaving a landscape that could not be adapted for agriculture or occupation, and which was positively dangerous for casual visitors. A museum was opened in 1977 to show what happened in the area. The formal sections include three workers’ houses, a grocery store, a community hall, a shed where railway workers ate their meals, a construction office and a transformer. The ways of life of the workers, particularly their fondness for gambling and the means by which they entertained themselves far from their homes, are fully detailed. An area of some 1100 ha is protected as a nature reserve where visitors can see from marked tracks a variety of abandoned machines, winches, excavators, conveyors and narrow gauge locomotives. They can also see how wildlife has colonised some of the waste tips and the shores of the lakes that have filled the deeper excavation pits. The museum holds a large collection of digitised photographs of the lignite workings. There is a memorial to the 57 people killed while working in the lignite mines between 1940 and 1970.

Soby Lignite Museum
Soby Brunkulsmuseum
Brunkulsvej 29
7400 Herning
Denmark
+45 (0) 97 - 147529
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