WITH great attention to detail, a retired Clacks design engineer has embarked on a project to create a model of Dollar Mine.

The town's Mick Rice, formerly a design engineer with Mercedes, is behind the initiative, having previously produced a model of Dollar Railway Station which aroused much interest around Dollar Museum.

Supported by grant sponsorship by two friends of the museum, Mick is working on the model for Dollar Mine, which operated from the mid 1950s into the early 1970s.

The initial stage of the build will showcase the surface buildings and layout of the coal mine while stage two, to be completed by Easter 2023, will focus on the underground workings.

Mick has been researching the former colliery very thoroughly, obtaining plans and documents from the Scottish Mining Museum as well as interviewing retired miners and examining photographic evidence.

He has already spent many hours constructing the surface buildings, workings and surrounding area.

The mine, which was commissioned by the National Coal Board in 1956 and produced fuel for the power station at Longannet, occupied the area to the west of the recent Gowan Lea housing development and some of the farm buildings featured in the model still exist.

At the height of production, the mine employed more than 500 men and was awarded a second contract to supply the power station near Kincardine during the 1970s.

It is understood the mine was closed in May 1973, in the years leading up the miners hit burnt coal, water ingress was causing issues while poisonous gas was also discovered.

The railway closed shortly afterwards as it had only remained open for transporting the coal.

Already completed in the model, the tracks carrying waggons in and out of the mine are shown, the ventilation system is illustrated and there are a range of buildings including the shower block and administration buildings as well as the brick-built store to house the required explosives.

The locomotive on the line took the coal to Kincardine and there is a bus to show how men were transported into work, giving a sense of the scale of the operation.

The model will be installed at Dollar Museum when the work on the first stage is complete and will be the centrepiece of an exhibition showcasing mining in the area along with extracts from interviews with former workers.