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In 1812, William Reid Clanny, a native of Bangor, County Down, invented a safety lamp for use in mines. 

His creation was prompted by the Felling Mine Disaster which had taken place in Sunderland, where he was living, earlier that year. 

The lamp consisted of a candle in a glass casing over a trough of water. 

His invention was a great development in mining safety and he was rewarded with medals and prize money. 

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