at the coal face love

at the coal face

Definitions

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • phrase UK, idiomatic To be directly engaged in the operations of a business, rather than in a hands-off, managerial position.

Etymologies

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From being in a coal mine, at the face where the mining is actually occurring, especially in dark, cramped, dirty, hazardous conditions. Compare front line and in the trenches, of similar formation.

Examples

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