This chapter considers the role of the Mines Inspectorate, one of the outcomes of nineteenth-century efforts to mitigate the worst sufferings of the industrial worker without restricting the freedom of the entrepreneur to pursue his private and legitimate aim of making money. Within two years of the inauguration of the Inspectorate it was evident that the size of the task and the workload laid upon the inspectors had been underestimated. With 1,200 collieries to be inspected each man would have to visit 300 mines a year. The inadequacies of the system continued to be shown up at every turn and in 1855, the number of inspectors was doubled, their salaries were increased, and so were their duties, which now included the promulgation of General and Special Rules designed to promote safer working in the pits.
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