for the term coalface -
for example - working at the coalface
i interviewed some people they were all coalfaces. is this correct usage?, if so what does it mean
I have never seen it used of people. The 'coalface' is simply the part of the coal mine that they are digging into at the moment. I see that Oxford also has the idiomatic 'at the coalface', which refers to hands-on rather than theoretical work.