Moving visit to Westray display

STELLARTON — Emotions surfaced for visitors recently at the Westray display at the Museum of Industry.

Trevor Boyd — along with Amanda Geddes, Mateo Geddes and Sam Geddes — took time during a visit to the museum to view the display.

The display at the rear of the museum’s main foyer was assembled over the past weekend for its official opening on Tuesday to coincide with events associated with the 25th anniversary of the Westray coal mine explosion in nearby Plymouth.

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“It’s a special time to be here, especially for the kids because they weren’t around then,” Amanda Geddes said.

A commemorative wall of honour features sketches of the 26 minors who were killed in the explosion, white roses for each one and two podiums for people to record tributes to them.

Books containing notes and letters of condolences can be viewed on a table beside a long list of those affected by the mine disaster.

Assorted photos with descriptions and several artifacts adorn the display.

There is also a glass model showing the layout of the mine tunnels that was assembled for use during court proceedings that followed.

“It’s hard to believe it’s 25 years,” Boyd said. “I feel all the pictures of the miners are very moving. I’ve gained a lot more insight into what happened.”


From left, Mateo Geddes, Trevor Boyd, Amanda Geddes and Sam Geddes examine some of the many letters of condolences contained in note books at the Westray display at the Museum of Industry. (Goodwin photo)

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Steve Goodwin
Steve Goodwin was born in Amherst, N.S. and has been a journalist for more than 40 years. He has been a resident of Pictou County for nearly 40 years.