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The Trapper - 1. Jimmy's first day

The first of three short dramas set in the north-east of England in the 1840s about a young miner called Jimmy Turton. Jimmy introduces himself. He's eleven years old and he's about to start his first day working in the mine as a trapper. In the mine he'll be working alone in complete darkness, opening and closing trap doors to allow coal carts along the tunnel and to control the flow of air through the mine.

Jimmy is feeling anxious as he enters the cage with his brother Benjamin and an older miner called William. He's been in the mine often enough before, but not since his father died in an explosion about a year previously.

Jimmy tells us about his work as a trapper, but the episode ends on a sombre note with Jimmy imagining the explosion that killed his father.

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7 minutes