ONE of Lake Macquarie's oldest links to the coalmining industry has become a work site for local men once more.
Last January, Lambton Colliery became home to the newly formed Redhead Men's Shed.
Built in 1893, the site was used until 1991 to mine coal, which was taken to the Port of Newcastle.
In recent years, Lake Macquarie council and the state government have spent more than $470,000 to restore the colliery.
With the help of a $48,000 grant from the Newcastle Permanent Charitable Foundation, the Redhead Men's Shed has carried out further renovations.
Redhead Men's Shed president Dave Perkins said he was grateful to have secured a five-year lease on the site, with access to all the buildings.
"It means so much to us that we're not cramped in a small space, because we can now have more members," Mr Perkins said.
The shed has opened its doors to new members from Dudley, Kahibah, Charlestown, Whitebridge and Jewells.
This Sunday, February 2, the community is invited to the official reopening of the Lambton Colliery at the Redhead Men's Shed open day.
From 10am, there will be live music, a sausage sizzle and children's activities.
Local historian Ed Tonks will be there to talk about the colliery's history.
Mr Tonks said it was important these buildings were preserved.
"Do you know where you'll find other buildings like these?
"All the others have been destroyed, built on ... made into parks and playing fields.
"These are the last of their kind."
■ Redhead Men's Shed, cnr Collier Street and Geraldton Drive, Redhead. For more information, phone Dave Perkins on 0418 657 958.