Family-owned Banks Mining, part of the Banks Group which was founded in County Durham in 1976, has put forward proposals for a new surface mine, which would be located on agricultural land in Dewley Hill.
Banks Mining is looking to extract around 800,000 tonnes of high quality coal from the site during the project, which would run for a three and a half year period.
The firm will be speaking with local residents over the coming months, to discuss economic, environmental and social factors, and how they can maximise benefit for their communities.
Mark Dowdall, environment and community director at The Banks Group, says: “The Dewley Hill site has the potential to support 50 new, highly skilled jobs, as well as to open up substantial new opportunities for locally-based suppliers, and would extend our long-term record of investing in the communities in which we operate.”
A planning application is expected to be submitted for the scheme later this year, with coaling scheduled to begin during 2018 if the project gets the go ahead.
The firm are also looking for further suggestions from local people about how they think the development could be best utilised.
"All our operations are specifically designed to bring a wide range of economic, employment, social and supply chain benefits to the communities in which they're based, and while we have some ideas on how these benefits might be realised through the Dewley Hill scheme, we're very much open to hearing more from local people,” added Mr Dowdall.