"we all cheer when we see Vince and his marrers spilling out of the cage near the start."

The end of the shift
Permission Granted by Copyright Owner for Use on Book DrumThe end of the shift - Credit: Pete C
At the end of the shift the pitmen would drawn up to the surface in a cage. Each miner had with him a check with his number on. A second check would have been deposited with the 'banksman' before entering the cage at the start of the shift, and hung on a board at the pithead. The returning miner would hand in the check he had kept, which would be matched with the one on the board. This was a simple method of ensuring that no one was lost or trapped at the end of the shift.