The proposal to hold the 11th International Mining History Congress (IMHC) at Linares was made by our friend and colleague, Robert Vernon. It was while he was attending the 10th Congress at Charters Towers, Queensland, Australia, that he took the opportunity to discuss the proposal with some members of the IMHC committee. The potential of Linares as a suitable Congress venue was also highlighted visually at the Congress in the paper presented by Robert about the mining operations of John Taylor and Sons, who’s operations had made a significant contribution to the mining landscape that surrounds the town. Subsequently, in September 2014, the Colectivo Proyecto Arrayanes agreed to prepare a formal proposal for submission to interested parties, including Linares Town Council. The proposal got unanimous support, so the Colectivo took up the challenge.
The Congress will be a worldwide opportunity to promote the rich mining heritage of Linares and the surrounding area, as a large proportion of Congress delegates are frequently from countries such as Australia and the Americas. Congress delegates come from a mix of mining backgrounds, including professional engineers, technologists, academics, mining historians, and those who just want to learn. The general theme of the Congress “Mines: history and influence in industrial and social development of mining communities”, will give ample opportunity for the exchange of knowledge amongst the delegates.
To secure a successful outcome for the proposal, the Colectivo sought the views for example, of the Andalusian Government (Tourism), the University of Jaén, as well as various local and regional institutions, all of which were eager to support the proposal, and make the 11th IMHC a success. The remains of four thousand years of mining history, the richness of our mining district and metallurgical sites and the mining landscapes, will be an exceptional framework for the conference, and a unique experience never to be forgotten.